So do you really want to know what a real tech is worth?

john_gJanuary 7, 2009

How do I say this without bragging about it? Frankly, when you think about the responsibility that this demonstrates, its scary what the potential outcome could have been. More than anything what this really points out is just how important it is to use a shop that employs techs that have the right tools and equipment. Techs that go to schools to stay up to date with the technology, and who take enough pride in their work to make sure that the cars are repaired correctly.

One of my customers just walked in a few minutes ago. He easily is one of my best customers. On December 27th, he had a drunk driver roll through a stop sign and he totaled his van in the accident. Now him and his wife were a little bruised up, but otherwise OK. Not three months ago I had to repair his van for a transmission problem, and I repaired the airbag system at the same time. The EMT actually told him, its a good thing they had their seat belts on, and that they had airbags. The collision occurred while they were traveling at approximately 50mph, he never even had a chance to hit the brakes. His van is gone, they are both here and are OK.

He stopped by to tell me, he was glad I talked him into fixing that part of the car. Sad that his beloved van is gone, but happy that it did the last job that it was truly needed for correctly.

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Hi John. Funny how different laws work. Up here your van
driver could be held 50 percent at fault for the accident.
" He entered an intersection when it wasn't safe to do so ". Don't rag on me, that is what our laws say. If your van driver didn't want his air bag fixed and you knew
there was a problem and you didn't fix it against his wishes you'd go down big time. His van now does not meet the factory crash test safety margin and you knowingly let it back on the street. I have the power to pull the plates on a vehical that i know is not safe.If the owner refuses
to allow me to fix it the D.M.V. sends him a recall notice for another safty inspection after i turn him in. The owner has 48 hours to get it fixed or he loses his drivers licence and the plates are pulled.The vehical is impounded after the 48 hours. This is a serious infraction only. If it was me and your van driver was involved in an accident without a working air bag and i knowingly let it back on the street and he was hurt i get sued, loose my licence and could spend a few months in the crow bar hotel. I'm requiered by law to report this vehical to the D.M.V. My wife was cut off and she hit the rear quarter of a car with her brakes locked up. Her air bag went off. That is it. The car is not drivable. MUST BE TOWED. The car was fine except a broken bumper cover. They wrote it off. As in gone. Sent to the crusher. Front bumper covers are not repairable nor is the front facia. They are replaced. The front bumper cover for her car is $1734.97. Then you have to paint it. Then you have to install it. Then you replace all the crash sencors and body integrity and the 4 wheel alignment then the safety. Who knows maybe you guys will get the same laws we have and people will be safer. Or maybe have safer cars on the road. I guess they're waiting for a 30 percent kill rate before your government does anything. Actually a true story. a friend of mine brought his car in for an oil change and the so called free B.S.
brake inspection. ( not my shop ). His rear brakes were metal to metal. They did the brake job without his consent.
Wasn't safe. He either payed or he didn't get the car back.
There was nothing he could do. It is the law. That is a good tech. We all have to be government safety certified
or we don't work in the trade. We don't have the power of life and death but when you can pull a drivers licence and
the registation plates in 5 mins. it's pretty close. We cut
a lot of slack but don't piss us off.

    Bookmark   January 7, 2009 at 7:59PM
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We don't have a licensing program here in the states. Now some states have a token program of their own, but it basically only regulates the people with the skills, knowledge and intentions of doing things the right way in the first place. I can't prevent someone from taking their car for any reason at all. Now I could call the local police and if they can catch the person and pull them over they can do something about the situation.

Air bag deployed? We have places that sell imitation steering wheel covers, that look like the air bag is operable. They even install a resistor in the circuit to "keep the light off" when possible, otherwise the pull the cluster and remove the bulb.

BTW, here when you are driving down a highway you have the right of way. Its the responsibility of the other driver to cede.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2009 at 8:25AM
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I guess that might be a good thing we have up here. We have
public insurance. One company does all. The only way you can " hide " a crashed vehical is have it towed home and say nothing. Actually that can usually never happen because the other driver will report the claim. Now the insurance comp. will come looking for you. If there is any
body damage other than a wind shield or the air bag deployed the car is red flaged by the insurance comp. and can NEVER be reregistered unless it is fixed. Then body integrity, then 4 wheel alignment, then safety, then inspected, and signed off with a new safety certificate.
Believe me the fist thing they check is if the air bag and
all safety features are reinstalled and working. We had a
couple of cops stealing air bags from auto wreakers and selling them on the black market. One of the insurance
inspectors wanted to see the invoices for the new air bag
the body shop installed. The body shop invoice didn't show
the bag came from a reputable licenced replacement dealer.
The insurance comp. started an investigation and it led to
a sting operation. The cops were caught and got 15 months.
All cars that came out of that shop and any other shop the
stollen air bags were used in were recalled. The car owners had 7 days to get their bags replaced at no cost.
The body shops in question payed for it and were then put out of buiness. Some body shop owners were jailed for fraud. When it comes to cars and the safety thing we don't
screw around up here. Here is another thing you won't believe. If a car is crashed repaired and put back on the road more than twice the insurance comp. evaluates the car
and how much money was payed out in all claims. If they decide they will not pay again to fix the car, after all they fixed it two or three times already they will, after the next accident flag the car as irrepairable even if the car has a broken head light or grill. The car will NEVER be put back on the road by anyone no matter what you do to it. I've seen them do that with a 12 year old car with high mileage and a small amount of rust after a shopping cart crashed into the door. Yes they have been known to
mark a car as irrepairable just because of high mileage and

    Bookmark   January 8, 2009 at 11:29AM
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