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AUTOBODY CT / DE / ME / MD / MA / NH / NJ / NY / PA / RI / VT


Vol. 9 / Issue 2 / May 2018

AASP/NJ’s NORTHEAST 2018, Debut of WMABA’s P.R.E.P. Yield Huge Successes

MSO Drops Use of PartsTrader, Remains on State Farm’s ‘Select Service’ Program

by Chasidy Rae Sisk

by John Yoswick

AASP/NJ hosted its 2018 NORTHEAST Automotive Services Show during the weekend of Friday, March BASF hosted an ‘Industry Innovators Luncheon’ at the 16 through Sunday, March neighboring Embassy Suites, featuring KC Mathieu of 18 at the Meadowlands Ex- KC’s Paint Shop, Jonathan Goolsby of Goolsby Customs, position Center in Secaucus, and Troy Spackman of Legacy Innovations who discussed their careers and experiences with a room filled with NJ. collision repair students This was the first year that the association collaborated with was a huge success, drawing some of the Washington Metropolitan Auto the industry’s favorite speakers and Body Association (WMABA), which seeing a 20 percent increase in attenfacilitated the training portion of the dees compared to last year. See WMABA’s P.R.E.P., Page 18 event: WMABA P.R.E.P. The event

State Farm is allowing Caliber Collision centers participating in the “Select Service” program to remain on the program without using PartsTrader for State Farm claims. Caliber’s corporate office declined to comment on the change, but sources have told CRASH Network that Caliber CEO Steve Grimshaw announced at a company gathering in February that Caliber was curtailing its use of PartsTrader. “We’re now using PartsTrader only for The Hartford,” a source at a Caliber location in North Carolina confirmed. “I’m not sure if it’s a pilot for [State Farm] dropping PartsTrader, or what.” It is unclear whether the change was initiated by State Farm or Caliber. One source within Caliber said

State Farm Responds to Claims of Influencing Non-OEM Auto Repair by Katherine Coig,

A jury recently found Texas-based John Eagle Collision Center liable for injuries sustained by Matthew and Marcia Seebachan following a 2013 crash because a repair was not done according to OEM specifications, according to the verdict. Now, State Farm is in the spotlight for its alleged role in influencing that repair. The couple is suing for negligence and breach of warranty. The lawsuit stems from a non-OEM roof repair, which used an adhesive instead of being welded as Honda’s

specifications outlined. According to John Eagle’s director Boyce Willis, State Farm wouldn’t pay the shop unless the repair was done according to its specifications as opposed to Honda’s. “No insurance company should ever dictate to a collision repair center or body shop how to repair a vehicle. To do so is extremely negligent, and shows a wanton disregard for human life and the safety of others,” said Todd Tracy, attorney for the plaintiffs. “John Eagle did not repair the subject 2010 Honda Fit to Honda’s See State Farm Responds, Page 69

that he expects the company’s use of PartsTrader for The Hartford to end in the near future as well. An estimator at a Caliber location in Georgia said he was happy with the change. “You still have to do your due diligence in searching for alternative parts [for State Farm claims],” he said. “But this saves us a lot of time. I’m not a PartsTrader fan myself. They say there’s some of those out there—PartsTrader fans—but I don’t know any.” Caliber locations in at least three other states also confirmed they are no longer using PartsTrader for State Farm claims, yet remain on the Select Service program. A State Farm spokeswoman said the company considers its agreements with repair facilities to be “confidential and therefore we will not be providing any comment.”

Todd Tracy’s 10 Ways to Avoid a $42 Million Verdict by Gene Bilobram and Todd Tracy

Attorney Todd Tracy’s recent lawsuit against a dealership body shop marks the start of a profound shift for collision repairers. Below is his list of 10 Ways to Avoid a $42 Million Verdict, co-authored by Gene Bilobram, who wrote “The Pre and Post Scan Revolution” featured in Autobody News last spring. 1) Always Follow OEM Repair Specifications Refer to vehicle-specific (year, make, model) and repair-specific OEM repair manual information on every repair. Follow up by seeking any OEM position statement, Technical Service Bulletin (TSB), recall or general procedure applicable to the OEM and its vehicles.

2) Always Follow I-CAR OEM repair procedures do not always exist in a particular vehicle repair situation. In those cases, published I-CAR best practices should be sought out and followed to assure an industry best practices repair. After OEM procedures, always follow I-CAR. 3) Remember Who Your Customer Is The vehicle owner and future owners will live with the consequences of the repairs you make. Keep the customer informed about the high standard of repairs the shop is striving to provide with any insurer resistance to same. It’s the shop’s duty to involve the customer rather than make unilateral decisions which can compromise repairs. The shop’s overriding duty is to provide the safest repair See 10 Ways, Page 12



Change Service Requested

P.O. BOX 1516, CARLSBAD, CA 92018




CONTENTS ABRA Auto Body Repair Opens 1st Location in MD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Barry’s Auto Body in NY Sues Tri-State Consumer Insurance Company, Inc. . . . . . . . 9 CARSTAR Nescar Garage Opens in MD . . . . . . 15 Connecticut Peers Into Driverless Future . . . . . 10 D&V Autobody Gets Top Automakers Recognition. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 63 Fire Destroys Body Shop in West Elizabeth, PA . 15 H&V Collision Center Announces Subaru

Ledoux - OE Shop Certification Programs: Toyota. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28

Party at Albany, NY, Boys & Girls Club . . . . . 12 H&V NY, Announces Honda Certification . . . . . 15 Jeff Tech PA Co-op Students Showcase Achievements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 NORTHEAST 2018 Panel Shares Tips to ‘Take Back Your Business’. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56 NY Auto Collision Students Gain Skills, Work in Local Businesses . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Peruzzi Collision Center Celebrates I-CAR Gold Class Anniversary in PA . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 Sisk - AASP/NJ’s NORTHEAST 2018, Debut of WMABA’s P.R.E.P. Yield Huge Successes . . . . 1 Students Attend PPG Workshop in PA . . . . . . . . 9 Todd Tracy Delivers Updated Presentation at NORTHEAST 2018. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 Waiver Approved for New Auto Repair, Collision Classroom at MA Tech School . . . . 14

Paint Line: Modern Classikk Kindig . . . . . . . 44 Phillips - Following OEM Procedures Will Help Avoid Surprises, Injuries, Delays . . . . . 42 Phillips - WIN Event Highlights Talent Development, Career Management in Collision Industry. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 Yoswick - Problems With Non-OEM Radiators Led to CAPA Certification Program . . . . . . . 34

NATIONAL ACA Joins Trade Groups to Address Tariffs. . . . 47

for Connected Car Drivers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 68

Attanasio - The Amazing Art of Chris Harsh . . . 48 Ledoux - Duke, Dunk and DuPont—Tales from the 1930s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54

Amato Agency . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24

Malouf Chevrolet-Cadillac . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44

Atlantic Hyundai. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38

Mazda Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . . . 64

Audi Fairfield . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51

McGovern Chrysler-Jeep-Dodge-Ram . . . . . 14

Audi Wholesale Parts Dealers. . . . . . . . . . . . 57

Mercedes-Benz . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17

Axalta Coating Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5

Mercedes-Benz of Atlantic City. . . . . . . . . . . 43 Mercedes-Benz of Fairfield . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51 Mercedes-Benz of Fort Washington . . . . . . . 43

ASA ‘Not-Included Operations’ Update . . . . . . 64

Cadillac of Mahwah . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46

Mercedes-Benz of West Chester . . . . . . . . . 43

ASA Endorsement of OEM Service Procedures . 69 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26

Mercedes-Benz of Wilmington . . . . . . . . . . . 47

Can an Insurance Company be Obligated to Pay More Than Expected on a No-Fault

CarcoonAmerica Airflow Systems. . . . . . . . . 15

Mercedes-Benz Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . 62

Central Avenue Chrysler-Jeep-Dodge-Ram . . 27

MINI Wholesale Parts Dealers. . . . . . . . . . . . 69

Cherry Hill Dodge-Chrysler-Jeep-Ram . . . . . . 8

Mitsubishi Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . 68

Policy? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16

Classifieds . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 70

MOPAR Wholesale Parts Dealers. . . . . . . 40-41

FedEx Orders 20 Tesla Semi Electric Trucks . . 69

Collision Equipment Consulting, Inc.. . . . . . . 12

Nissan/Infiniti Wholesale Parts Dealer . . . . . 58

How Did a 2-Vehicle Crash End in Fraud,

Colonial Automotive Group . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45

Nucar. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25

Dent Magic Tools . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22

Ourisman Chrysler-Jeep-Dodge-Ram. . . . . . 20

Forgery Charges? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8

Diamond Standard Parts, LLC. . . . . . . . . . . . 31

Porsche of Fairfield . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51

ECS Automotive Concepts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28

Porsche Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . . 54

Empire Auto Parts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48

PPG . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2, 6

EMS Automotive. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34

Robaina Industries, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29

Equalizer Industries, Inc . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9

SATA Dan-Am Company. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11

Ford Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . . . . . 60

Schultz Ford. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55

Fred Beans Parts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 72

Security Dodge-Chrysler-Jeep-Ram . . . . . . . . 7

Fuccillo Kia of Schenectady . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19

Spanesi Americas . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21

How Self-Driving Car Policy Will Determine Life, Death and Everything In Between . . . . . . . . . 4 James Roach Receives I-CAR Founder’s Award . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60 MSO Drops Use of PartsTrader, Remains on

Tesla Says Autopilot Was Engaged During

Meeting Mixes Business With Fun . . . . . . . . 52

Malco . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32

BMW Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . 66-67

Attanasio - Assured Performance Develops

Attanasio - Mopar Masters Guild Annual

Autobody News P.O. Box 1516, Carlsbad, CA 92018 (800) 699-8251 / (760) 603-3229 Fax editor@autobodynews.comx

BMW of Tenafly . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50

Robot Cars: Safety and Liability. . . . . . . . . . . . 60

Retain Good Employees . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32

Acura of Westchester . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42

Serving New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Northern Virginia, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont and adjacent metro areas. Autobody News is a monthly publication for the autobody industry. Permission to reproduce in any form the material published in Autobody News must be obtained in writing from the publisher. ©2018 Adamantine Media LLC.

Arizona Suspends Uber’s Driverless Car Tests . 68


Attanasio - Fill the Void—How to Find and

Publisher & Editor: Jeremy Hayhurst General Manager: Barbara Davies Contributing Writers: John Yoswick, Janet Chaney, Toby Chess, Ed Attanasio, Chasidy Sisk, David Luehr, Stacey Phillips, Victoria Antonelli, Gary Ledoux Advertising Sales: Joe Momber, Sean Hartman, Bill Doyle, Norman Morano (800) 699-8251 Office Manager: Louise Tedesco Digital Marketing Manager: Bill Pierce Art Director: Rodolfo Garcia Graphic Designer: Michelle Lucas Online and Web Content Editor: Rochelle Beckel Accounting Manager: Heather Priddy Editorial/Sales Assistant: Randi Scholtes

Affectiva Launches Emotion Tracking AI

State Farm’s 'Select Service' Program . . . . . 1

Technology to Provide Shop Accountability. . 38

Phillips - Dave Kindig Fronts New Custom

Certification . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 H&V Collision Sponsors 3rd Annual Easter

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Don’t Miss the Weekly AUTOBODY Industry NEWS Your Shop Needs.

Model X Fatal Crash . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58 Todd Tracy’s 10 Ways to Avoid a $42 Million Verdict . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Toyota Suspends Self-Driving Test Program . . . 58

GM Wholesale Parts Dealers. . . . . . . . . . . . . 65

Subaru Wholesale Parts Dealers. . . . . . . . . . 63

GYS Welding USA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30

Symach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10

H.E.W. And Associates . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16

Tasca Automotive Group. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49

Healey Brothers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35

Toyota Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . . . 58

Honda-Acura Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . 36-37

Valenti Audi . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52

Hyundai Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . . 56

Valenti Volkswagen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52

Infiniti of Norwood . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33

Valspar Automotive . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18

VIP Honda . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39

Kia Motors Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . 61

Volkswagen Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . 59

Launch Tech USA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 71

Westbury Jeep-Chrysler-Dodge-Ram-SRT . . 23

Uber’s Former Self-Driving Chief Still Believes in Dream of Safer Roads . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 62 WAC Signs Association Paperwork, Elects Officers at Recent Meeting . . . . . . . . . . . . . 64

Lynnes Auto Group . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53 / MAY 2018 AUTOBODY NEWS


How Self-Driving Car Policy Will Determine Life, Death and Everything In Between by Brett Frischmann and Evan Selinger, Motherboard

Self-driving cars are here. More are on their way. Major automakers and Silicon Valley giants are clamoring to develop and release fully autonomous cars to safely and efficiently chauffeur us. Some models won’t even include a steering wheel. Along with many challenges, technical and otherwise, there is one fundamental political question that is too easily brushed aside: Who decides on how transportation algorithms will make decisions about life, death and everything in between? The recent fatality involving a self-driving Uber vehicle won’t be the last incident where human life is lost. Indeed, no matter how many lives self-driving cars save, accidents still will happen. Imagine you’re in a self-driving car going down a road when, suddenly, the large propane tanks hauled by the truck in front of you fall out and fly in your direction. A split-second decision needs to be made, and you can’t think through the outcomes and tradeoffs for every possible response. Fortunately, the smart system driving your car can run through tons of scenarios at lightning fast speed. How, then, should it determine moral priority? Consider the following possibilities: 1. Your car should stay in its lane and absorbs the damage, thereby making it likely that you’ll die. 2. Your car should save your life by swerving into the left lane and hitting the car there, sending the passengers to their deaths—passengers known, according to their big data profiles, to have several small children. 3. Your car should save your life by swerving into the right lane and hit the car there, sending the lone passenger to her death—a passenger known, according to her big data profile, to be a scientist who is coming close to finding a cure for cancer. 4. Your car should save the lives worth the most, measured according to amount of money paid into a new form of life assurance insurance. Assume that each person in 4

a vehicle could purchase insurance against these types of rare but inevitable accidents, and then, smart cars would prioritize based on their ability and willingness to pay. 5. Your car should save your life and embrace a neutrality principle in deciding among the means for doing so, perhaps by flipping a simulated coin and swerving to the right if heads comes up and swerving to the left if it’s tails.

Credit: Shutterstock

6. Your car shouldn’t prioritize your life and should embrace a neutrality principle by randomly choosing among the three options. 7. Your car should execute whatever option most closely matches your personal value system and the moral choices you would have made if you were capable of doing so. Assume that when you first purchased your car, you took a self-driving car morality test consisting of a battery of scenarios like this one and that the results “programmed” your vehicle. There’s no value-free way to determine what the autonomous car should do. The choice presented by options 1–7 shouldn’t be seen as a computational problem that can be “solved” by big data, sophisticated algorithms, machine learning, or any form of artificial intelligence. These tools can help evaluate and execute options, but ultimately, someone— some human beings—must choose and have their values baked into the software. Who should get decision-making power? Should it be politicians? The market? Insurance companies? Automotive executives? Technologists? Should consumers be allowed to customize the moral dashboard of their cars so that their vehicles execute moral decisions that are in line with their own preferences? Don’t be fooled when people talk about AI as if it alleviates the


need for human beings to make these moral decisions, as if AI necessarily will take care of everything for us. Sure, AI can be designed to make emergent, non-transparent and even inexplicable decisions. But since the shift from human drivers to passive passengers in self-driving cars shifts decision-making from drivers to designers and programmers, governance remains essential. It’s only a question of which form of governance gets adopted. The scenario we’ve described is based on an old philosophical thought experiment called the trolley problem. In the original experiment, a person is faced with the decision about pulling a level to divert a trolley from one track to another and in doing so, save five lives but take another. MIT developed a modern interactive version called the Moral Machine. It’s not surprising that the trolley problem comes up in virtually every discussion of autonomous vehicles. To date, the debate has primarily focused on death-dealing accidents and raised important questions about who gets to decide who lives and dies. Some insist that the question of who decides must be resolved before autonomous cars are given free rein on the roads. Others argue that such decisions concern edge cases and should be deferred to the future so that innovation won’t be stalled. And some deny that the trolley problem scenarios are even relevant, once super smart braking systems are built into each car. The critical social policy questions need to be addressed proactively while systems are being designed, built, and tested. Otherwise, values become entrenched as they’re embedded in the technology. That may be the aim of denialists pining for perfectly safe systems (unless they’re truly deluded by technoutopian dreams). The edge case argument is more reasonable if you focus exclusively on the trolley problem dilemma. But the trolley problem captures one small, albeit important piece of the puzzle. To see why, we need to consider scenarios that don’t involve life-or-death decisions.

Let’s focus on accidents. Selfdriving cars will reduce the number of accidents, but again, do not be fooled by the siren’s call of perfection. There still will be accidents that cause:

• considerable bodily loss, such as the loss of limbs, but not death;

• considerable bodily damage that disables the injured person for 24 months;

• considerable mental damage that limits the injured person’s ability to ride in an automobile and forces the person to use less efficient modes of transportation;

• considerable damage to the person’s vehicle; or • damage and delays.

Assume that the smart system driving your car is presented with various options that allocate these costs according to the logics reflected in the death-dealing accident scenario. Again, there’s no value-free way to decide, and it’s not an ad hoc decision. Engineers will embed the ethics in decision-making algorithms and code. Again, society must determine how to proceed proactively. Keep in mind that this governance issue is not about assigning fault; it is only about how to determine moral priority and who should bear the social costs. (Of course, as we transition to smart transportation systems over the next few decades, determining fault may be quite important.) Now, put aside accidents, and still, there are many other costs and benefits that smart transportation systems will be asked to manage. Suppose weather causes a disruption and smart traffic management systems kick in. What should the systems optimize? Should the objective be to minimize congestion or the social costs of congestion? Perhaps letting some folks wait for a while on a fully congested road would allow other folks to get to their destination more quickly. Maybe people should be able to pay for higher priority, in which case their vehicles receive See Self-Driving, Page 27 / MAY 2018 AUTOBODY NEWS


NY Auto Collision Students Gain Skills, Work in Local Businesses

Four Ulster BOCES Auto Collision Technology students are gaining realworld, work-based experience by par-

Ulster BOCES Auto Collision Technology students Dylan Brainard, Saugerties Central School District; Jared Fisher, Onteora Central School District; Joseph Decker, Saugerties Central School District; and Christian Mendez, New Paltz Central School District

ticipating in the school’s Capstone work-study program. The students, Joseph Decker and Dylan Brainard, both of the Saugerties Central School District; Christian Mendez of the New Paltz Central School District; and Jared Fischer of the Onteora Central School District spend four of their five Career & Technical Center school days onsite at different automotive repair shops, including H & V Collision Center, Larsen Restoration & Design, and Sawyer Motors automotive dealership. The students agree that working

in a business environment is enhancing the technical skills and related academic lessons they receive in the Auto Collision Technology program. They like that the program allows them to experience working in their chosen career field while earning a paycheck. “The Auto Collision program really sets us up to go to work every day, and Capstone is a great program for kids who aren’t sure if they want to do this as a career,” said Fisher, who is employed at H & V Collision in Kingston, NY.

From left, H & V Collision Center's Senior Auto Body Technician/Auto Body Trainer Shaun Maher runs diagnostics with Ulster BOCES Auto Collision Technology student Joe Decker of the Saugerties Central School District

Decker, who also works at H & V Collision, said working closely with his mentor Shaun Maher, a 2009 Ul-

Jeff Tech PA Co-op Students Showcase Achievements by Matthew Guerry, Courier Express

Jeff Tech students enrolled in the school’s co-operational education program addressed members of the school’s joint-operating committee March 26. Rose Weaver, who oversees the co-op program, said at the JOC meeting that she currently has 42 students working with local businesses through the program. “Of all the shops, I have a representative from each and every shop out there,” she said. “For all the shop teachers to have at least one person representing their shop ... that’s never happened.” Weaver also recognized the school’s cosmetology students, four of whom she said are in the field with local businesses. One student in the collision repair program, Matthew Beck, described to committee members what he does through a co-op with Cataldo’s Collision in DuBois. “I do mostly prep in there right now. I sand new parts and prime body parts, and also sand for blend panels,” he said. “The co-op has changed my life by giving me some 6

real-life work experience out in the field.” Gavin Lingenfelter, a student in the HVACR program, said he works two to three days a week with a local HVACR business. The co-op program, he said, has better suited him because it allows him to focus on school a few days a week and on work the others. “This experience will help me in the future because I’m going to college for my four-year bachelor degree,” he said. “I think almost every job is going to help me a good bit in my future, and to own my own business.” Brookville Area Superintendent Dan Hawkins commended the students, and remarked how far the co-op program has come. Committee Chair Fred Park echoed Hawkins, thanking the students for sharing their accomplishments with the committee. “It puts faces on all these things that we do here on paper,” he said. “You’re what it’s all about.” We thank Courier Express for reprint permission.


ster BOCES Automotive Technology and Kingston City School District graduate, has helped him gain valuable experience and move from entrylevel work—like cleaning and washing cars and marking damaged parts—to more advanced services like filling holes, repairing scratches, dents and dings, and making cars look as good as new. “I learn a lot every day. It’s oneon-one working with Shaun, and I work with him six hours a day,” said Decker, explaining that the atmosphere has shown him how a real business runs. “It’s a work environment, not a classroom with 30 kids.” Rich Tanchyk, assistant vice president at H & V Collision Centers, said the Capstone program has been a win-win partnership for his company and the students in the Ulster BOCES automotive programs. “H & V Collision Center has placed a priority on customer satisfaction and repair excellence during our more than 40 years in business. H&V has been able to forge a solid working partnership with Ulster BOCES because of the level of training and education provided to students in the Capstone program. Through our part-

nership, H & V has hired seven students from Capstone, and we look forward to continuing to work with

Ulster BOCES Auto Collision Technology student Joe Decker of the Saugerties Central School District (left) works on dismantling engine parts with H & V Collision Center's Senior Auto Body Technician/Auto Body Trainer Shaun Maher

Ulster BOCES in the coming years,” said Tanchyk. Automotive Collision Technology instructor Rosenberg said he’s grateful to have H & V, Larsen Restoration & Design and Sawyer Motors working on behalf of the students in his program. “Having a supportive business community that builds positive workbased partnerships allows us to create an educated workforce and secure the next generation of skilled workers,” said Rosenberg. / MAY 2018 AUTOBODY NEWS


How Did a 2-Vehicle Crash End in Fraud, Forgery Charges? by Bret Pallotto, Centre Daily Times

Some auto insurance companies may pride themselves on offering low rates quickly, but one customer tried to go back in time to file a claim, according to the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Insurance Fraud office.

Tyler Hensal, 31, of Philipsburg, PA, purchased a vehicle insurance policy from The General about 9 p.m. on Nov. 8. He filed a claim for a two-vehicle crash on Nov. 13 and said the accident occurred about an hour after he had purchased the insurance policy. The insurance agent contacted Travelers Insurance, the insurance company for the other vehicle, and


discovered the driver had said the accident occurred about 5:30 p.m. Decatur Township police were dispatched to the accident at 5:03 p.m. The General prepared an estimate of the damage and found Hensal’s 2003 Dodge pickup to be totaled, which meant a loss of about $8,000. Damage to the other vehicle, a 2014 Nissan, was estimated by Travelers at more than $12,000. Hensal brought his insurance information to Decatur Township police two or three days after the accident and showed an officer an email that allegedly confirmed he had obtained insurance prior to the accident, according to investigators. The email was time-stamped at 1 p.m. In a follow-up interview with the insurance agent, she told investigators she believed Hensal changed the time at the top of the email in an attempt to strengthen his case. In a separate interview with police, Hensal was confronted about


the Decatur Township police report and phone records from The General, which both showed the policy was purchased after the accident. Hensal admitted he had purchased the policy after the accident and that he told The General the accident occurred after he had purchased the policy. Hensal was charged with felony counts of a making a false insurance claim and theft by deception. He was also charged with a misdemeanor count of forgery. He was arraigned before District Judge Allen Sinclair, who released Hensal on his own recognizance pending his appearance at a preliminary hearing on April 4.

We thank Centre Daily Times for reprint permission.



Autobody News

Abra Auto Body Repair Opens 1st Location in MD

Abra Auto Body Repair of America has announced the addition of a new center in Rising Sun, MD. Rising Sun is Abra’s first location in the state of Maryland. Located at 320 W. Main St. in Rising Sun, the facility opened as Abra on March 12, and came through the acquisition of Harrison MITA Collision earlier in the month. The 16,500square-foot repair center has 14 bays and 13 employees, who were welcomed by Joe Cirelli, Abra’s Chief Real Estate Officer, and other company leaders. “We’ve had a lot of success in the region,” said Jim Kessler, Abra’s Chief Operating Officer. “We’re looking forward to introducing ourselves to the people of Maryland, and continuing to build on our reputation for quality and service.” The center expands Abra’s operations in Eastern Pennsylvania and Northern Maryland, and complements 28 existing centers in the Philadelphia, southern New Jersey and Delaware region. Abra now has 340 repair centers in 27 states across the nation.

Barry’s Auto Body in NY Sues Tri-State Consumer Insurance Company, Inc.

Barry’s Auto Body filed a lawsuit in New York State Supreme Court against Tri-State Consumer Insurance Company, Inc., Gabe Deri, Louis Simo, Basit Irfan and IANET Corporation, alleging that its client’s repair work was delayed or impeded by their insurance company and/or its adjusters. The lawsuit cites: Breach of Contract, Violation of General Business Law §349, Deceptive Business Practices in Violation of General Business Law §349, and Tortious Interference With Business Relationship as the causes of action against the defendants. Barry’s Auto Body alleges that the defendants: “...jointly and severally impeded and delayed fair settlement of the Assignor’s claims by using improper costs schedules, setting arbitrary price caps, refusing to negotiate in good faith on labor rates, refusing to pay appropriate amounts for paint materials and parts, and otherwise failing to inspect or re-inspect the vehicles within the time frames specified by regulation...” in order to steer consumers to auto body shops in their direct repair program and others,

thereby causing damage to both the insured and the auto body shop. The Insurance Information Institute—an independent source of objective information on insur-

ance—defines a direct repair program (DRP) as “a network of auto repair shops and dealerships approved by an insurer.” Its website states, “Consumers have the right to go to the auto shop of their choice and to get their own repair estimate. They are not required to use a direct repair program offered by their insurance company.” The suit also alleges that the defendant “insisted” on using parts that are not original equipment manufacturer parts in its estimates which, according to the Insurance Information Institute website, violates consumers’ rights. According to III’s website, “Insurance companies cannot require a policyholder to use only certain kinds

of auto repair parts.” Barry’s Auto Body owner Barry Crupi said, “Direct repair programs, which can go by many names, were created to keep the cost of vehicle repair down and to make it easier for consumers. However, some insurance companies are pressuring policyholders to use ‘after-market’ or generic parts in vehicle repair, even when those parts are known to be inferior. It’s important that policyholders understand their rights when it comes to auto body claims. They pay their insurance premiums believing that their insurance carrier will protect them. Unfortunately, there are many insurance companies and auto body shops willing to cut corners to preserve their own bottom line at the expense of the consumer. “Insurance companies and auto body shops are regulated to ensure public safety. I am obligated, morally and by law, to restore vehicles to a safe [and operable] condition. This is not the first time an insurance company tried to pressure me into cutting corners on a vehicle repair and it will likely not be the last, which is why it’s important for consumers to know their rights.”

Students Attend PPG Workshop in PA by Kateri Johnston, Indiana Gazette

Indiana County Technology Center’s collision repair juniors attended a workshop held March 22 and 23 at the PPG Training Center in Allison Park, PA. The two-day seminar covered all topics concerning the Deltron/Concept and Waterborne refinishing systems. The workshop provided students with opportunities to learn through real-world industry-led training opportunities. They were able to directly relate their own skill sets to the real-world environment, received advanced training in refinishing systems given by PPG and will have an opportunity to test and earn their PPG Blue Level Refinishing certification their senior year. Attending the training were: Sierra Banks, Kyle Miller, Andrew Steele, Seth Irwin, Levi Karlinsey, William McElhoes, Austin Myers, Michael Naylor and Blake Sherba, chaperoned by. Mr. Mike Miller, collision repair instructor. We thank The Indiana Gazette for reprint permission. / MAY 2018 AUTOBODY NEWS


Connecticut Peers Into Driverless Future by Thomas Breen, New Haven Independent

Seventy-five years from now, when the streets are filled with driverless cars that never speed, how will governments make up for lost traffic ticket revenue? In a world without car crashes, what will happen to auto body shops? And will anyone ride the trains anymore if a comfortable, convenient, affordable rideshare service is just a phone click away? Adam Blank is thinking through those questions over the next few months as he helps usher in the rapidly approaching era of the driverless car to the Nutmeg State. Blank, an attorney, is one of 11 Connecticut residents appointed to a state task force to investigate the future of driverless cars in Connecticut. He came on WNHH’s “The Legal Eagle” program to talk about the mission of the task force, as well as about the technological innovation’s political, economic and environmental consequences. The task force, which includes Commissioner of Motor Vehicles Michael Bzdyra, Commissioner of Transportation James Redeker, and Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management (OPM) Benjamin Barnes, will also make recommendations on how to establish driverless car pilot programs in four Connecticut cities: New Haven, Hartford, Waterbury and Stamford. The state legislature created the task force in June 2017, yet the group has yet to meet. Blank said that the first meetings were delayed because of the state budget crisis last fall. He said he expects that the task force will meet soon. He said that the task force’s recommendations should be ready by the fall. Utopian Promise Driverless cars, also known as “autonomous cars” or “robot cars,” are automobiles that essentially drive themselves. Blank said that driverless cars are ranked from zero to four based on the level of automation. Level 0, he said, applies to cars that are not automated, and are controlled entirely by a human driver. 10

Levels 1 and 2 apply to cars with some automated features, such as adaptive cruise control, automatic breaking assists, blind spot warnings and lane departure warnings. These cars still primarily rely on a human driver. Levels 3 and 4, he said, apply to cars that drive themselves entirely. They don’t need steering wheels or brake pedals. They use a combina-

tion of GPS, lidar (or light detection and ranging), Wi-Fi, infrared cameras and regular cameras to navigate their surroundings without the help of a human driver. But Blank, a personal injury lawyer who spent a decade on Norwalk’s zoning commission, said that his interest in driverless cars extends beyond the technological marvel of it all and more toward their utopian promise, their political and economic ramifications, and the profound social and ethical questions that they raise. “This is an important moment for the [car] industry and for the public,” Blank said. “The promise of these vehicles is that they’re going to very, very substantially reduce motor vehicle crashes and fatalities.” One-third of the country’s motor vehicle-related fatalities are related to alcohol. Motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of death for 15-to-29 year-olds in this country. He said that one of the key hopes for driverless cars is that, without the risk posed by a distracted or impaired or drowsy driver, the number of automobile-related injuries and fatalities will drop significantly. But, he said, there will still be accidents and malfunctioning technology, particularly as society transitions from primarily non-automated to primarily automated vehicles on the road. He noted the death of a woman in Tempe, AZ, who was struck and


killed by a self-driving Uber car in March as one of the industry’s first examples of the dangers inherent to this transitional moment. Whom to Sue? As a personal injury lawyer, Blank said, he is interested in helping Connecticut figure out how the state’s legal system can and should work to make sure that there is a fair and ef-

ficient process for resolving driverless car accidents. He said that one way that the law could handle such issues is by assuming that the owner of the vehicle, whether that owner is an individual or a rideshare service, such as Uber, is always responsible for the vehicle’s actions. If a lawsuit is filed, it would be filed against the

vehicle’s owner. However, he said, he would like to see manufacturers of automated cars provide insurance at a high amount that would cover the vehicle and the owner. When a claim is made against the owner, he said, the auto insurance would come from the manufacturer, not some individual auto policy. He also said that the law should determine responsibility for accidents involving automated cars by assessing which party violated the rules of the road. But the questions posed by a future of driverless cars are not just legal ones, he said. Without the need for a driver, car interiors will come to resemble offices or living rooms, with a higher focus on comfort and “infotainment,” Blank said. Automated cars will be equipped with a suite of functional and recreational technologies that will collect reams of customer data for car manufacturers to mine. “What happens to the data they See Driverless Future, Page 27 / MAY 2018 AUTOBODY NEWS


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10 Ways


4) Up to Date Research Each repair plan should be researched with all available resources in existence, at the time, to achieve the best repair. Because the shop worked on the same or a similar vehicle before doesn’t make the prior repair information necessarily reliable. What was true 6 months ago may be superseded. What works on a 2015 model may not work on the 2016, even if the body style appears identical. 5) Proper Documentation and Record Keeping There is a memorable quote from Alonzo Harris, the detective played by Denzel Washington in the movie Training Day. “It’s not what you know, it’s what you can prove!” It’s crucial to document proper repairs with multiple photos and/or video plus any supporting documentation. If no specific repair information exists, it is prudent to document the at-

tempt. Keep good records! There are no excuses with today’s vast array of digital technology. So, ditch the shoe box of receipts and learn to digitize to back up your hard copies. 6) Reporting A key issue, early on in the John Eagle Collision case, was the omission of the repair on a CARFAX report. You may think, “What does it have to do with me” if an unsuspecting consumer buys a vehicle we repaired which was not picked up by CARFAX or other service? Perhaps these words from Eldridge Cleaver will change your mind, “There is no more neutrality in the world. You either have to be part of the solution, or you’re going to be part of the problem.” Ask yourself, would you rather be the problem shop or the solution shop? 7) Never Put Profits Over Safety Besides the obvious ethical reasons, cutting corners to increase profits is not a sound long-term business strategy. The shop should not agree to repair a part based solely upon the insurer’s repair versus replace cost analysis. As a result, the customer

can suffer compromised safety and vehicle devaluation. Same goes for accepting imitation parts or skipping proper repair methods. 8) Never Overpromise What You Can Deliver The repairer should never overpromise with outlandish statements like our repairs make a vehicle “better than new,” “good as new,” or “perfect,” as examples. The following appeared on the John Eagle Collision website, “....our goal is to achieve ‘better than new.’” Those words came back to bite them. When you overpromise, even a tiny speck of dirt in the paint can be a lawsuit in the making. 9) Never Allow the Insurance Company to Dictate the Repair “The Devil made me do it” is an excuse as old as time. It didn’t work for Eve in the Garden of Eden, it didn’t work for John Eagle Collision and it won’t work for you. We all know the misguided influence exerted on repairers by Insurance Company Bullies. However, you are ultimately enticed by your own desires. Make it your de-

sire to service the “true” customer (#3 above) and you can’t go wrong. 10) Be a HERO and Stand Up to the Insurance Companies Inform the insurance company and the customer in writing that the insurer’s approved repairs violate OEM repair specifications and can cause serious injury or death should the vehicle have another accident. Tell them you will not repair the vehicle in that manner knowing you are placing someone’s life at risk. If the insurance company still refuses to make equitable allowances to repair the vehicle to OEM specifications, tell them that YOU WILL perform the work required by the OEM, take what the insurance company pays and then SUE THE INSURANCE COMPANY FOR THE DIFFERENCE! This list is available in PDF file format at: Courtesy of: www.vehiclesafetyfirm .com ©2018 Todd Tracy and Gene Bilobram - all rights reserved.

H&V Collision Sponsors 3rd Annual Easter Party at Albany, NY, Boys & Girls Club

H&V Collision Center, the largest independent and family-owned collision repair company in the Capital

Region, sponsored the third annual Easter party at the Albany, NY, Boys and Girls Club. The party featured the Easter bunny, who took photos with the


kids present at the event. The party also included a surprise appearance from Tri-City ValleyCats mascot

Southpaw. Each child got a 1 lb. chocolate Easter bunny, additional snacks, an Easter shirt and a pair of Easter bunny ears. Following photos, the kids were treated to a cupcake party. The H&V Albany Easter Party is one of a number of events sponsored by H&V to give back to the community. The locally owned business is also committed to helping veterans, families and individuals facing special challenges.


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Waiver Approved for New Auto Repair, Collision Classroom at MA Tech School by Michael J. Rausch, The Bourne Enterprise

The Bourne Planning Board has granted a waiver of special permit and site plan review to Upper Cape Cod Regional Technical School in Bourne, MA, paving the way for the school to begin construction of a new automobile repair and collision classroom. Upper Cape Tech’s Nolan Leroy requested the waiver during the planning board’s meeting Thursday night, March 8. Leroy oversees the school’s construction division, supervising teachers and programs in such areas as carpentry, plumbing, electrical and environmental technology. Leroy said that the classroom would measure 28 by 30 feet in size, and would be used for two to three class periods each school day. Board chairman Elmer I. Clegg noted that because Upper Cape Tech is an educational institution, a section of Massachusetts state law known as the Dover Amendment applies to the waiver request. The Dover Amendment precludes educational, agricultural and religious institutions from having to meet certain zoning regulations. Under the measure, the use of


a particular facility must have education as its “primary or dominant purpose.” The classroom would be for the specific purpose of teaching students auto repair.

The Dover Amendment states that “no zoning ordinance or by-law shall...prohibit, regulate or restrict the use of land or structures...for educational purposes on land owned or leased by the commonwealth or any of its agencies, subdivisions or bodies politic.” Upper Cape Tech is a state school operating on state-owned land. Clegg said that, given the Dover Amendment’s application, the board was limited in what it could investi-


gate relative to the project. However, height, setback and public safety were within the board’s purview. He asked town planner Coreen V. Moore to confirm that the 830 square feet qualified the building for a waiver. Moore said that if the gross floor area of a building is less than 1,600 square feet, the project does not require review by the board. She said that at 830 square feet, the building had no impact on abutting properties, the neighborhood or the town. She added that there are no drainage or lighting issues. “That’s why I felt it a good recommendation for a waiver,” she said. Clegg asked Leroy about the size of the student population at Upper Cape Tech. Leroy said the current number of students is 764. Clegg then asked about the limit on the school’s wastewater system. Leroy said it was 800 students. He added that the school is discussing with the state Department of Environmental Protection about increasing that capacity. Member Jeanne Azarovitz served as the reviewer on the project. Azarovitz made a motion to grant the waiver request with the conditions

that no building permit for the classroom be issued until the Bourne Fire Department had completed a comprehensive review of the property. She included a second condition that the Bourne Water District first show satisfaction with the school’s existing water line, which would provide water to the new building, prior to issuance of a building permit. The board voted in favor of granting the waiver request. Member Louis R. Gallo recused himself from the vote. A local contractor, Gallo said he occasionally does work at Upper Cape Tech, and wanted to avoid any perceived conflict of interest. Upper Cape Tech superintendent Robert A. Dutch said that construction of the new classroom is expected to begin as soon as the snow from that week’s blizzard cleared. We thank The Bourne Enterprise for reprint permission.


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Fire Destroys Body Shop in West Elizabeth, PA by Staff, WPXI

A fire destroyed an auto body shop in Allegheny County, PA, on Wednesday, April 11. Kendra Lewis said Lewis Auto Body has been in her husband, Troy’s family since the 1940s. The lot once housed a gas station where Troy worked as a child. Now, he and a small staff repair vehicles. They were all out on runs when the fire broke out. “My husband’s dream and his business [are] just gone,” Kendra Lewis said. The fire chief told Channel 11 that it took nine companies to put out the blaze. The building is a total loss, but the Lewis family said their business has been a fixture for decades, and they don’t intend for that to change. “Hey. We will rebuild and we’ll be OK. Things will be OK,” said Kendra Lewis. We thank for reprint permission.

H&V Collision Center Subaru Certification

H&V Collision Center, the largest family-owned-and-operated repair company in the Capital District, announced that it is now Subaru-certified at its Troy, NY, location. In March, Subaru announced its collaboration with Wadsworth International in desire to create an OEM program. H&V Collision is excited to be one of the first shops selected for this program. Assistant Vice President Rich Tanchyk said, “We are very pleased that H&V has been selected to be included in the launch of the Subaru Collision Repair Program. The standards that Subaru has set align [with] the quality care we give all our customers. We look forward to ensuring that all of our Subaru customers’ cars are repaired safely and to the highest standards.” H&V, an industry leader for more than 40 years in upstate New York, currently has seven locations throughout and outside of the Capital District.

H&V NY, Announces Honda Certification

H&V Collision Center recently announced its Queensbury, NY, shop is now Honda ProFirst-certified. This certification means all seven H&V locations are now Honda ProFirst-certified. To earn the Honda ProFirst Certification, H&V Collision facilities had to meet specific criteria and standards set forth by Honda and Acura manufacturers. To meet these standards, H&V Collision uses OEM parts for all automobile repairs. Assistant Vice President Rich Tanchyk said, “We are extremely pleased that our seventh location has been approved by Honda of America. The program demonstrates recognition by Honda of the integrity of H&V Collision as a repair provider and we understand fully the advantage that it gives us in the repair community. We look forward to ensuring that all of our Honda customers’ cars are repaired safely and to the highest standards.” H&V, currently has seven locations throughout and outside of the capital district.

CARSTAR Nescar Garage Opens in MD

CARSTAR Auto Body Repair Experts announced the opening of CARSTAR Nescar Garage, located at 11408 Old Baltimore Pike, Beltsville, MD, owned by Nestor Montoya. CARSTAR Nescar Garage, which has operated as Nescar Garage Body Shop since 2009, offers free collision repair estimates, state-of-the-art laser-precision unibody and frame repair equipment, bumper repair, expert color matching, towing assistance, vehicle pick-up and delivery, a nationwide warranty for most repairs, and rental cars through Enterprise. The certified technicians at CARSTAR Nescar Garage are trained to work on all makes and models and participate in ongoing education programs on the latest vehicle technologies and materials. “We’re honored to have Nestor and his team bring their years of experience and passion to our network. Our second location in Maryland will provide the highest-quality collision repairs and excellent customer service for drivers in the Washington, D.C. and Baltimore regions.”

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Can an Insurance Company be Obligated to Pay More Than Expected on a No-Fault Policy? by Henry R. Guindi, Property Casualty 360

Article 51 of the New York insurance law mandates that injured parties in motor vehicle accidents may be compensated for basic economic loss, which is defined as losses up to $50,000 for certain necessary expenses, such as medical costs. No-fault cases revolve around the same repetitive issues---medical necessity, IME or EUO no-show, fee schedule, the prima facie case, etc. Once in a while, a decision from the appellate courts comes along and has an impact on how different no-fault issues are decided. Currently, there is a pending case waiting to be heard that can alter how cases are currently decided, but even more significantly, it can impact the way insurance companies do business. The no-fault regulations provide that an insurer is required to pay claims in the order the services were rendered. Section 65-3.15 of Regulation 68 states the following: 65-3.15 Computation of basic economic loss. When claims aggregate to more than $50,000, payments for basic economic loss shall be made to the applicant and/or an assignee in the order in which each service was rendered or each expense was incurred, provided claims therefor were made Pay claims in order of services rendered

to the insurer prior to the exhaustion of the $50,000. If the insurer pays the $50,000 before receiving claims for services rendered prior in time to those which were paid, the insurer will not be liable to pay such late claims. If the insurer receives claims of a number of providers of services, at the same time, the payments shall be made in the order of rendition of services. The Appellate Division is slated to hear an appeal in Alleviation Med. Servs., P.C. v. Allstate Ins. Co., 55 Misc.3d 44 (App. Term, 2d Dept., 2d, 11th & 13th Jud. Dists. 2017). In this case, the court ruled that a claim that was denied on medical necessity prior to the exhaustion of the no-fault policy retains its position in the pecking order of priority of payments as a result of the implicit acknowledgment by the insurance company that the claim was fully verified when it issued a denial for that particular bill. Therefore, when the denial was later determined to be unsupported, the insurance company was still obligated to pay the outstanding bill, regardless of the fact that the underlying insurance policy had already been exhausted. In making its decision, the Appellate court reached a conclusion antithetical to that of the other court. Ironically, both courts relied on the same Court of Appeals case of Nyack Hosp. v. General Motors Ac-

Peruzzi Collision Center Celebrates I-CAR Gold Class Anniversary in PA

Drivers who are looking for the most advanced collision repair in the Bensalem, PA, area available can contact Peruzzi Collision Center to learn more about its strict standards for technicians and repairs. After celebrating the anniversary of its I-CAR Gold Class certification, the team at Peruzzi Collision Center is encouraging drivers to choose the most knowledgeable services available to avoid further damage to their vehicle and comprehensive repairs. Only about 10 percent of auto body repair shops in Levittown, PA, can maintain Gold Class certification. I-CAR certification is a rigid and strict standard that very few 16

shops invest the resources and time required to achieve. In order to maintain Gold Class certification, auto body repair shops must take the time to ensure that every one of their technicians is specifically trained in collision repair. Gold Class certification is important because it helps drivers gain peace of mind of knowing that the technicians working on their vehicle have remained up-to-date on training and technology. As technology and systems within vehicles constantly evolve, working with technicians who are educated on the most current models allow drivers to get fast and comprehensive repairs on their vehicles.


ceptance, 8 N.Y.3d 294, 300 (2007) to support their positions.

Exhaustion of the policy In Nyack Hospital, the Court of Appeals was faced with a case where the plaintiff, Nyack Hospital, submitted a claim for reimbursement under the no-fault regulations, but the defendant insurer, General Motors, issued verification requests asking for the patient’s complete hospital records. By the time the hospital’s responses were received by the insurer, the insurer had already paid other claims, causing the exhaustion of the policy. The plaintiff argued “that once it submitted the requisite forms to make a claim that caused aggregate claims to exceed $50,000, the insurer had a duty under 11 NYCRR 653.15, the priority-of-payment regulation, to keep the money that was due the [hospital] in reserve (up to the policy limits),” and therefore the “insurer should have delayed paying no-fault claims subsequently received from other health service providers, pending the hospital’s re-

sponse to the insurer’s request for additional verification.” The Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the insurer and reasoned that “[t]o adopt the priority-of-payment regime advocated by the hospital, we would have to interpret ‘claims’ in section 65-3.15 to encompass claims that have not been verified in accordance with section 65-3.5. This approach runs counter to the no-fault regulatory scheme, which is designed to promote prompt payment of legitimate claims.” The Court of Appeals thus established that an unverified claim does not maintain a right to payment so long as it remains incomplete. Inconsistency between NY courts Inconsistency between the two courts may result in illogical outcomes. The tug of war of values seems to pull both ways and the ultimate decision may very well come from the Court of Appeals. We thank Property Casualty 360 for reprint permission.

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“The amount of traffic that came through the Meadowlands Exposition Center was unprecedented, and the quality of the various seminars and presentations held throughout the weekend far exceeded our greatest expectations,” AASP/NJ President Jerry McNee said. “NORTHEAST gave thousands of people from our industry a chance to get a firsthand look at the latest tools and equipment that will aid them in becoming more efficient, profitable and professional in the future. I had the pleasure of speaking with attendees who flew in from all over the country to take part in everything we had to offer. Every vendor I visited told me how excited and impressed they were, with many of them adding that they want to expand their display space next year!” WMABA Executive Director Jordan Hendler added, “The firstever WMABA-produced Collision P.R.E.P. education series was deemed a success! Partnering with the AASP /NJ and the NORTHEAST Trade Show, there was a tremendous amount of foot traffic, and there were quality people in the industry looking to advance themselves through education

Paul Stern from LIFTNOW discussed the prevalence of ADAS systems in modern vehicles and how many of them must be reset after a collision

or vendor relationships. Overall, our seminars were very well-attended and some were even standing-room-only. The series featured an in-depth ‘OEM Repair Panel: Becoming a Certified Repairer and Understanding the OEM Repair Procedures,’ along with seminars from standouts Mike Anderson (Collision Advice) and Todd Tracy (The Tracy Law Firm), among many other national industry icons who imparted knowledge the entire weekend. 18

All our sessions had very positive feedback, and the entire track of education was very well-received. WMABA couldn’t be more pleased to be a part of it all.” Things kicked off on Friday af-

Mathieu advised, “Don’t be afraid to clean a toilet—Do whatever it takes to get the job done.” Spackman added, “The hardest part is finding people who are willing to do that—Do whatever’s necessary

AASP/NJ held its 40th Annual NORTHEAST Automotive Service Show at the Meadowlands Exposition Center in Secaucus, NJ

ternoon with the NORTHEAST 2018 East Coast Resolution Forum and Leadership Meeting, co-hosted by SCRS and AASP/NJ and moderated by LIABRA’s Ed Kizenberger. This annual roundtable discussion provides an opportunity for industry professionals to share valuable information about their daily challenges and successes. At 2 p.m., Danny Gredinberg of Database Enhancement Gateway discussed how to utilize free resources to document estimates in “The Estimate Toolbox: Using Free Resources to Complete an Accurate Vehicle Damage Repair Plan.” Gredinberg delivered an encore presentation Sunday morning. Also at 2 p.m., BASF hosted an “Industry Innovators Luncheon” at the neighboring Embassy Suites, featuring KC Mathieu of KC’s Paint Shop, Jonathan Goolsby of Goolsby Customs and Troy Spackman of Legacy Innovations, where they discussed their careers and experiences with a room full of collision repair students. Goolsby discussed the importance of setting goals and Spackman encouraged, “In this industry, you’ve got to want it and go for it. You really have to be passionate about it.” Mathieu agreed, saying, “There’s nothing easy about any of this. We all had to fight to get where we’re at, and you have to enjoy the challenge of achieving something no one else has the courage to do.” They all shared their proudest moments and talked about attitude, attendance, work ethic and the importance of humility.


to get the job done. Attendance is important too; you’re useless to me if you’re not there.” Mathieu reminded the students that owning a business is also a huge responsibility. “I get a paycheck like everyone else, but if the clients don’t pay, I’m the last one to get paid,” he said. “I’ve taken money from savings to pay my

guys. I have to take care of my crew because they take care of the business.” At 5 p.m., Dave Gruskos of Reliable Automotive Equipment presented “Riveting and Bonding, and Other Repair Operations and Procedures,” providing insight on properly tooling and educating technicians to better understand the operations required by OEM procedures. Next, “Take Back Your Business: A Legal Guide” was discussed by Attorney Erica Eversman, Larry Montanez of P & L Consultants and Ed Kizenberger from LIABRA. As the legal panel concluded, Montanez and McNee presented the Second Annual James Moy Memorial Award for Dedication to the Automotive Repair Industry, which recognizes individuals who have shown outstanding service and commitment to the success of the automotive repair industry. This year’s award recipient was SCRS Executive Director Aaron Schulenburg. Collision Advice’s Mike Anderson delivered a motivational seminar focused on the importance of accurate estimates and documentation in “Write It


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Right, with Life Nuggets to Live By,” which he repeated on Saturday afternoon. The evening’s final educational opportunity was “I-CAR Training and Welding Technology Today / MIG Brazing & Rivet Bonding,” presented by Allan Smith and Pete Fryzel of I-CAR. The seminar’s goal was to discuss the importance of a safe and proper repair. The instructors also discussed some welding differences, a variety of rivet bonding techniques and I-CAR’s current direction. On Saturday morning, Fryzel and Michael Bonsanto taught an ICAR course on Squeeze-Type Resistance Spot Welding (WCS04). During “Proper and Accurate Blueprinting,” Montanez examined the importance of measuring and scanning with assistance from asTech’s Jake Rodenroth and Anthony Cetani of Metropolitan Car-O-Liner, respectively. They covered preliminary operations, classified damage severity, pre-measured the vehicle, scanned the vehicle, discussed the results and shared some suggested actions. “Becoming a Certified Repairer and Understanding the OEM Repair


Procedures” was a panel discussion moderated by Gary Wano Jr. of GW & Son Auto Body. Panelists included Gruskos, Montanez, Aaron Clark from Assured Performance Network, Barry Dorn from Dorn’s Body & Paint, Bill Hawkins from BMW of Annapolis and Mark Allen from Audi USA. The panel provided in-

Ron Reichen of Precision Body and Paint discussed “Structural Repair Methodology” in a very interactive way, engaging attendees in dialogue throughout his presentation

formation on the process of OEM certification, discussed the benefits and offered tips on how to make the investment benefit attendees’ businesses. LIFTNOW’s Paul Stern dove


into “Safety System Alignment: A New Focus on Body Shop Profitability” at 12:30 p.m. on Saturday. He discussed the prevalence of ADAS systems in modern vehicles and said many of them must be reset after a collision. Shops should be doing a wheel alignment, safety system alignment and steering angle reset. In order to reset these systems, shops need an interface device and possibly other radar adjustment tools. Stern emphasized, “There’s no way you’re getting away from it, so you’ll need to get involved with it.” Regarding alignments, Stern claimed that subletting is a huge loss, costing time and reducing profit while still maintaining liability. Shops should also bill for alignments based on labor hours instead of charging a flat fee. Stern admitted that getting paid will require an explanation to the adjuster, but he quoted State Farm’s Chris Evans as stating, “If you’ve got a technical repair procedure, and it specifies very technically and practically what needs to be done, there are very few and far between instances where we would ignore that.” Stern’s session served as a preview of

Sunday’s full-length seminar on Safety Systems Alignments, which he presented alongside Hunter Engineering’s Michael D’Ercole and Robert Barbieri. At 12:30 p.m., Ron Reichen of Precision Body and Paint discussed “Structural Repair Methodology” in a very interactive way, engaging attendees in dialogue throughout his presentation. Reichen defined damage analysis and structural repair as any repair that requires a dedicated or universal frame bench, any welded part designated as structural by the manufacturer, sacrificial parts related to the installation of the aforementioned and pulling structure realignment when allowed by the manufacturer. Reichen reminded attendees, “When writing the estimate, understand that we need to identify any structural operations. You have to repair the car correctly all the way through the process... We often see a lot of these operations lumped together, but it’s important to itemize each function.” Reichen identified preparation for clamping rocker panels, corro-

sion protection and texture coating as additional areas of lost revenue. “Break it down to one operation per line each time you do this,” he advised. “Each step is part of the process and should be added. We leave a lot of money on the table. Shops frequently charge for only one measure, but you should be measuring at least three times.” “Repairing cars correctly is more imperative now than ever--there’s no wiggle room. Itemize each operation in the repair plan. You are the architect of this repair,” Reichen continued, referencing the John Eagle verdict. “You can restore cars to better than they were before the accident, but you have to have that mindset.” Listing and discussing the steps of creating a repair plan, Reichen stressed the importance of following OEM procedures. “You have to make an effort to do your due diligence and be able to document it,” he said. “Repairing vehicles safely is so important because people’s lives are at stake ... If an insurance company pressures you to do an unsafe repair, the customer

will respect you if you decline the repair because you refuse to compromise your integrity.” Reichen discussed the appraisal clause, shop liability, changes in materials and the fact that glass is an oft-forgotten structural component that still requires that the installation

Lee Rush of Sherwin-Williams discussed the importance of a tactical approach to lean implementation

processes be followed to maintain structural integrity. At the same time, ATI’s Keith Manich taught attendees about “Developing and Delivering Effective Written and Verbal Negotiation Practices.” During “Tactically Lean—Strategic Lean Implementation,” Sherwin-

Williams’ Lee V. Rush began by stating, “One of the most critical things in the industry is trying to change how we think about what we do every day on the production floor. The industry struggles with basic processes, and it’s time to change our approach to better meet the expectations of our customers and insurance carriers. The industry’s challenges require the ability to adapt, and I want to challenge you to analyze how effective your processes are today. We’re trying to connect the dots between high-minded lean concepts and real-world results.” Rush observed that industry trends—such as declines in the number of shops, increases in MSOs and decreases in profits—are not in shops’ favor. “Collision facilities are feeling pressure from all sides,” he said. “Our operating model needs to be improved to yield our desired outcomes. The challenges you face are real, and your approach to those challenges must be tactical. The best approaches to shop profitability are analysis and continuous improvement.” Rush described ways to analyze

and improve processes, suggesting the best areas to start analyzing are blueprinting and parts management. “Process is the biggest challenge in any industry,” he said. “Determine how you’re actually doing it and decide how you can do it better. Don’t assess from the perspective of your history; assess your desired outcome in a perfect world when considering how you can do it better.” From 3–4:30 p.m., NORTHEAST attendees had three seminars from which to select. Tim Ronak of AkzoNobel Coatings discussed “Severity Doesn’t Matter and How to Manage Insurer Expectations,” while John Niechwiadowicz of QLC, Inc. and Jerry McNee of Ultimate Collision covered “Three Keys to Receiving Proper Compensation For a Proper Repair and What To Do When They Say NO: Education, Documentation and Collaboration.” Michael Quinn of AirPro Diagnostics moderated a panel discussion on “Diagnostics, Calibrations and Programming: Understanding Shop Liability in this New Era and How to CYA.” A large crowd gathered at 4:30 See WMABA’s P.R.E.P., Page 26 / MAY 2018 AUTOBODY NEWS


Northeast Associations with Chasidy Rae Sisk

Chasidy Rae Sisk is a freelance technical writer from Wilmington, Delaware, who writes on a variety of fields and subjects, and grew up in a family of NASCAR fans. She can be contacted at

SCRS Executive Director Honored With 2018 James Moy Memorial Award During AASP/NJ’s 2018 NORTHEAST Automotive Service Show, AASP/NJ President Jerry McNee and Larry Montanez of P & L Consultants presented the second annual James Moy Memorial Award for Dedication to the Automotive Repair Industry to Aaron Schulenburg, Executive Director of SCRS.

a difference and want to do a lot more of that. That’s what James wanted as well.

Q: A:

How did you get involved in the industry?

I didn’t grow up in it—I fell into it by chance, but I’ve never worked in another industry. I was an estimator who wanted to be part of something bigger than just what took place in the four walls of our shop. I worked for a shop that understood the importance of associations and the value of nurturing its staff. Dan Hunsaker SCRS Executive Director Aaron Schulenburg was honored of Dan’s Paint and Body, as the recipient of the 2018 James Moy Memorial Award who I worked for, and for Dedication to the Automotive Repair Industry. (l to r) March Taylor of Auto Body Larry Montanez, Aaron Schulenburg, Jerry McNee Hawaii, who encouraged me Schulenburg graciously took to start attending industry events, time from his busy schedule to talk were really my two mentors who helped shape how I looked at the into Autobody News about this honor. dustry and [how] I wanted to be a part What does this award mean to of it. you? What are your proudest proI’m not even sure how to articfessional achievements? ulate it. I thought the world of This certainly ranks up there! James, and it was a tremendous loss I think the day we went live when he left us so early. I’m honestly just humbled to be recognized as part with the Database Enhancement of something that gets to carry on his Gateways, the day we went live with legacy. The reality is the work I get to Repairer Driven News, and the last be a part of is because of a lot of really day of the 2010 SEMA Show when awesome, passionate volunteers who we concluded the first year of our contribute to industry betterment in so Repairer Driven Education series are many meaningful ways. I’m often out probably three of my favorite days front presenting on the hard work, or professionally. They all marked a talking about it in publications, but moment where I think all of us inI’m never alone in accomplishing it. volved knew the industry would be I’m just really grateful to think I’ve better off because of the work that been a part of things that have made led up to that moment. They are all

Q: A:

Q: A:

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tools and resources that continue to make positive contributions to the industry, and I’m really proud to have been part of each.

Q: A:

What are your proudest personal achievements?

Watching the people my kids (Mason and Molly) are growing into. Having kids is easy. Helping kids become good people, and learning from them and offering them what they need along the way are not. I’m really proud of them, the choices they make, and who they are developing into. Like the professional achievements, this isn’t accomplished alone either. My wife, Kim, is an amazing role model for the kids, and she is really the one who holds it all together at home as I spend time away with SCRS, working on the industry.

Can you offer any advice for young industry professionals just starting their careers?


Strive to be a part of something bigger, and to make a difference. It can be nationally, regionally, at your state or in your own community, but there are so many opportunities to be a part of something that can help others. The rewards far outweigh the effort in the relationships you build and the experiences you are exposed to. Other than that, do the right things the right way for the right reasons, and don’t be afraid to make risky decisions if that is what is guiding you. This is an awesome industry, with so much opportunity for people who subscribe to that ideal. Congratulations Aaron and thank you for your dedication to the industry!



Todd Tracy Delivers Updated Presentation at NORTHEAST 2018 by Chasidy Rae Sisk

For several months, Dallas attorney Todd Tracy has been touring the country to present “Anatomy of a Lawsuit,” a discussion on the $42 million John Eagle lawsuit he won in 2017. During NORTHEAST 2018, he delivered an updated version: “Anatomy of a Crisis: Getting Vehicle Safety Professionals Re-Focused on Fighting the Insurance Industry.” He identified his goals as teaching attendees to think like safety professionals, keeping sharks out of their shops and providing details on his recent crash testing and the pushback received. “It’s time to get the insurance companies out of your vehicle repair labs because they’re jeopardizing customers’ safety,” Tracy said. “To make the industry great again will require change and courage. Regarding change, you aren’t repairmen anymore—you’re vehicle safety professionals on the front line of safety, and you don’t get the luxury of a bad day at work.” Tracy suggested a unified mission statement for the industry. “As vehicle safety professionals, we have a moral and legal obligation to ensure that our customers make it home safely because our vehicle repairs were performed properly, responsibly and ethically,” he said. Vehicle safety professionals should be willing to embrace a new philosophy focused on educating them about crash science, engaging the customers to fight with them against the insurance company and letting the insurers know that the collision repair industry is energized, excited and waiting for a fight, according to the presentation. Emphasizing the need for understanding how different parts of a vehicle operate in an accident, Tracy discussed how seat belt buckles are only good for one crash event and said anti-submarining seat features are not as effective after one crash event. Seat cushion airbags are also only good once. All of these items must be evaluated and replaced after an accident. In rear-impact accidents, seats are designed to yield and deflect, so they must be replaced if an occupant over 125 pounds was in the seat. After an accident, head restraint posts and friction locks must also be evaluated to ensure they haven’t been 24

deformed. Tracy observed that GM vehicles have been using thinner head restraint posts that are hollow in the middle, and said he believes that a recall is in order. Turning to objects in the trunk, he pointed out that an object can slam into the rear seat and bend the retention brackets. Tracy told attendees that vehicle

Dallas attorney Todd Tracy discussed the importance of customer safety and proper repairs during NORTHEAST 2018. Vehicle1, 2, 3 – The three Honda Fits that Todd Tracy crashtested in December 2017 were on display on the Pavilion floor during NORTHEAST 2018

safety professionals must always think about and check for damage in areas that may not be so obvious when preparing repair estimates. He also said that when restoring vehicles back to a crashworthy condition, they should always pre- and post-scan vehicles for DTC codes and keep the printouts. “When aftermarket suppliers claim their product is just as safe as OEM parts, never trust them,” he said. “Demand that they verify their claims with actual crash testing. “Insurance companies that bully vehicle repair labs into improper repairs cause you to violate your industry and individual company’s mission statement. When vehicle safety professionals do their jobs right, small cars are just as safe as big vehicles. Do your job right, and families make it home safely, but there are insurance companies who refuse to let you do your job correctly because they hold the money and the power, so they make you choose between who survives—your company or your customer. This should enrage your industry, your company and you as a vehicle safety professional because there’s a legal and moral responsibility to protect your customer’s safety. “Are you going to sit there and take it or, if not, what are you going to do about it? We’re going to pick a fight because we have to get them out of your labs! Teddy Roosevelt once said, ‘There is no effort without error and shortcoming.’ Get off the sidelines and


get in the game. The time is right for an industry revolution following the $42 million John Eagle verdict, and you should be very afraid. The OEMs are getting in the fight too. We finally have the momentum here.” Tracy then moved on to how he won the John Eagle lawsuit. When he began to investigate the Seebachans’ Honda Fit, the vehicle in the lawsuit, he found that something didn’t add up. Ruling out a manufacturer defect, he found that the roof panels were missing 108 welds and found no evidence of a prior accident. When he spoke to the previous owner, he learned that the roof had been replaced due to hail damage and was able to ascertain that John Eagle Collision Center had glued the new roof on instead of welding it, as required by OEM procedures. Tracy shared details about how he won the case by exposing John Eagle’s website claims as false, proving that the 3M glue SOP instructed users to follow OEM welds, and using science and expert witnesses to prove that John Eagle’s attorney was being dishonest and manipulating data.

Tracy then listed 10 ways for shops to avoid a $42 million verdict: 1. Always follow OEM repair specifications. 2. Always follow I-CAR. 3. Know your customer. 4. Use the best resources available and keep documentation. 5. Never overpromise. 6. If you make repairs, report the repairs so future owners know the whole truth. 7. Never put profits over customers’ safety. 8. Never admit you’re letting insurance companies dictate how you do repairs. 9. It’s not always about money. Be willing to walk away from repairs. 10. Stand up to the insurance com panies, and tell them and your customer in writing that the insurer’s approved repairs violate OEM repair specifications and will cause serious injury or death to your customer or any future owner of the vehicle if an accident occurs in the future. “I have high hopes for you beSee Todd Tracy, Page 63

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Continued from Page 21

D&V Autobody Gets Top Automakers Recognition by Staff, LoudounNow

D&V Autobody in Sterling, VA, located at 42789 Trade West Drive near Arcola, has been certified by Assured Performance, a nonprofit consumer advocacy organization, for maintaining the tools, equipment, training and facility necessary to repair the participating automaker brand vehicles according to the manufacturers’ specifications. D&V Autobody is officially recognized by Assured Performance, FCA, Infiniti, Nissan, Hyundai and Kia. Less than 5 percent of body shops across the nation are able to meet requirements to become certified. “This certification supports our reputation for superior customer service serving our is important to provide our customers with peace of mind that their vehicles are being repaired by highly trained professionals that care about them,” stated owner Kevin Maharaj. We thank LoudounNow for reprint permission.



p.m. for “Ready, Set, Go! General Motors’ Collision Repair Network” with GM’s John Eck, Rachel Rodriguez, Rebecca Lauterbach, Mark Szlachta and Joe Villanueva. Eck explained GM’s decision to begin a collision repair network is all about customer safety and empowering customers to make educated decisions about where to have their vehicle repaired. He also announced GM’s partnership with Mitchell International for network management. The group discussed training, communications and more as they prepared attendees for what to expect from the mid-year launch. Saturday evening’s educational seminars concluded with Todd Tracy’s updated “Anatomy of a Crisis: Getting Vehicle Safety Professionals Re-Focused on Fighting the Insurance Industry,” which was presented for only the second time at NORTHEAST 2018. On Sunday morning, Rodenroth presented “The Time is Now! An


Update on Scanning and Calibration,” covering a variety of topics including identifying ADAS, repair procedures, customer interaction, insurer relations and authorizations. Lee Emmons and Brent Betts of AP Media discussed successfully reaching online consumers, identifying the most effective platforms and growing your business with the right digital strategy in “Developing an Effective Digital Marketing Strategy that Will Grow Your Business.” At 12:30 p.m., BASF’s John Shoemaker covered the “Basics of Blueprinting,” while Jim Saeli of Management Success presented an interactive training session on “Social Media Mania.” “WOW! Forty years in the making, and we knocked it out of the park!” McNee said. “I fully agree with Jordon: Our first year partnering with WMABA was well received. In speaking to vendors and attendees during and after the show and reviewing all the emails, we have received nothing but positive feedback. Everyone brought their Agame. The industry is changing— equipment, tools, training, OEMs and Todd Tracy along with our in-

dustry wanting to [make] a difference, all showing up in force ... It doesn’t get any better.” The NORTHEAST 2018 Trade Show was open all weekend and attracted nearly 200 exhibitors, triggering the need for a second level of space—the all-new NORTHEAST Pavilion. BASF’s booth featured industry innovators Mathieu, Goolsby and Spackman during various timeslots, and Paul Jr. of Paul Jr. Designs made an appearance on Saturday at Rogo Fastener Company’s booth. On Friday night, AASP/NJ hosted its Annual Exhibitor Appreciation AfterParty, and on Sunday, the association held its 10th Annual NORTHEAST Family Day. Sponsors of NORTHEAST 2018 included BASF, Ford, ProFirst, Axalta, Flemington Car and Truck Country, Innovative Solutions and Technology, Valspar Automotive, Sherwin-Williams, Lincoln Tech and Harbor Touch. AASP/NJ’s 41st Annual NORTHEAST Automotive Services Show is scheduled for March 15–17, 2019. For more information, visit www

Continued from Page 4

Self-Driving Car

special treatment? Today, police cars, ambulances and buses sometimes get special treatment. But these narrow exceptions aside, our roads are managed without prioritization. First-come, first-served is the default. In the future, however, we will be able to make finer discriminations about the identities, destinations and activities of individual passengers. Armed with this information, would you place some folks in the fast lane and stick others in slower ones? Perhaps a woman on her way to a business meeting should get priority over a woman who is attending her son’s music recital. Or should it be the other way around? The decisions don’t end there. Suppose only one of the drivers is going to make her event on time and the other will arrive too late even if she speeds. Should the smart traffic management system determine who gets to go and inform the other person to stay home? Over time, these sorts of decisions can be

expected to occur frequently. Traffic management is a form of social planning. Decisions that get made in any single instance of solving the trolley problem, or any of the other scenarios we’ve noted, reflect broader governing principles and ethical logics embedded in technology. These decisions aggregate and over time become social patterns. So, don’t be fooled when engineers hide behind technical efficiency and proclaim to be free from moral decisions. “I’m just an engineer” isn’t an acceptable response to ethical questions. When engineered systems allocate life, death and everything in between, the stakes are inevitably moral. Brett M. Frischmann is a Charles Widger Endowed University professor in Law, Business and Economics at Villanova University, and Evan Selinger is a professor of philosophy at Rochester Institute of Technology. They are co-authors of Re-Engineering Humanity, Cambridge University Press: forthcoming in April 2018.

We thank Motherboard for reprint permission.

Continued from Page 10

Driverless Future

compile about where you’re going, or what you’re doing?” he asked. “Will it be made anonymous?” He also said that any technology, no matter how secure, is vulnerable to hackers, and so driverless car advocates need to be wary about privacy and safety concerns that accompany the technology. “Do we wake up one morning where every GM car has been hacked, and they’ve all been hacked so that they crash at 90 miles per hour?” he asked. “Can they hack and kidnap you?” He also asked what the longterm impact would be on government revenue. He said that the computers that drive automated cars will be programmed to not speed, and therefore governments will no longer have access to the estimated $3 to $7 billion in annual speeding ticket revenue. One Word: Plastics In a future with no accidents, Blank

said that driverless cars would be made of light-weight plastic, not heavy steel, which would make the cars much more fuel efficient but would also disrupt the current steel industry. He said that the trucking industry is particularly keen on driverless cars, as they would eliminate the need to employ 3 to 4 million truck drivers, and would result in the faster or more efficient transportation of goods throughout the country. But what about those drivers’ jobs? And what about truck driver license revenue collected by the state? Blank said that semi-automated cars will become more and more popular over the next 10 years, but that the widespread adoption of fully automated cars is still a while away. In the meantime, he said, he and his colleagues on the task force will work to develop recommended guidelines for when, if things go wrong, there’s a fair system in place to protect drivers, cyclists and pedestrians, and to penalize those who violate the rules of the road. We thank New Haven Independent for reprint permission. / MAY 2018 AUTOBODY NEWS


OE Shop Certification with Gary Ledoux

OE Shop Certification Programs: Toyota For this month’s OE certification profile, we spoke with George R. Irving Jr., National Manager for Wholesale Parts and Certified Collision Centers for Toyota USA.

Does your program have a specific name? When was it started?

swer them?

OE parts sales are a by-product of proper repair and proper customer treatment. But the program



The official name is Toyota Certified Collision Centers, or TCCC for short. The program was started back in 1997, so it is 21 years old now.


Back in 1997, certified programs were pretty much limited to European high-line or more exotic cars, and not really considered for mass-produced cars like Toyota and Honda. What was the impetus for starting a certified body shop program back then?


Back in 1992, the “latest thing” with dealerships was “Certified Used Cars.” It started first with Lexus and then migrated to the Toyota side. Dealers liked the concept because they felt it separated them from all other used car places. Dealers felt using the term “certified” gave them more credibility. Dealers eventually felt that if this idea worked well for used cars, it would work well for those dealers with body shops, and the idea became a program.


Q: A:

What is the main purpose of the program?

First and foremost, the program is about having the car fixed safely and properly and the customer having a good experience. We want the Toyota customer to have a good experience when they buy a new or used car, [and] have that car serviced in the dealer’s service shop or body shop. Some in the industry say these programs are all about selling more OE parts. How would you an-



was not founded on, nor does it revolve around, OE parts sales.

What are the program requirements? (Note: Toyota has some of the most comprehensive program requirements of any of the non-luxury brands. Undoubtedly, this is possible because the program includes only Toyota dealer-owned body shops, thus the closer connection.)


The requirements include the following: Customer Satisfaction: Must have a CSI tracking and monitoring system / Must have defined procedures and processes in place to assure repair quality, customer treatment, and to ensure that the vehicle is ready when promised. CSI standards require both a minimum score achievement and minimum response rate as defined by Toyota. Training: Must maintain an ongoing training regimen for all collision center employees, including shop manager, estimators and repair and refinish technicians as defined by Toyota Tools and Equipment: Must maintain latest tools and equipment as defined by Toyota Facility: Must maintain a facility that is attractive, clean and professional in appearance with adequate space for efficient work flow as de-



Gary Ledoux is an industry veteran with 48 years’ experience in the automotive and OEM collision parts industry. His column appears exclusively in Autobody News. He can be reached at

fined by Toyota. Business Plan: The collision center must develop and implement a business plan targeting, profit, performance, and body shop productivity. Parts Performance: The shop must create a marketing strategy to increase the sale of Toyota Genuine Parts. This includes monitoring the shops’ parts to labor ratio, in addition to the ratio of Toyota Genuine Parts to salvage and aftermarket parts. Management Practices: Institute and maintain management systems that support established business goals. Marketing Practices: Develop an ongoing marketing plan and advertising campaign to promote the benefits of the Toyota Certified Collision Center to the public and to insurance companies. Production Process: Institute

quality control procedures through each step of the repair process. Safety and Environmental: Provide a safe and environmentally responsible workplace for employees and customers.

Q: A:

What are the program benefits?

Program benefits include the following: ► Access to a Key Performance Indicator reporting system

► Licensed use of the TCCC identification logo

► TCCC marketing materials

► Marketing funds

► Onsite consultation on best practices / MAY 2018 AUTOBODY NEWS


► Customized vendor support coordination

Every shop is inspected annually by Summit Consulting International and by our Collision Consultants.

► TCCC performance group meetings


► Monthly KPI Financial and metrics reporting

► Training programs are no charge for Certified Shops ► Toyota-dedicated training facilities are used.

Q: A:

What shops are eligible?

Our program is for U.S. dealerowned shops only—no independents.

Q: A:

Are any shops specifically ineligible?

Toyota operations in Hawaii are not controlled by TMNA. Toyota Canada has a separately run program.

Do you have any program partners such as Axalta, VeriFacts, Summit, Assured Performance or other? If so, what role do they play?


Summit Consulting International handles all audits for us and they assist with the follow-up if a shop has a gap item. In addition, we have eight Toyota employees that are dedicated to this program. That includes myself, our manager and two administrative people at the national office, plus four field people who work with our dealers and District and Regional Managers. Each field person handles three of our regions. Our four consultants assist with the onboarding process for certified shops and support their success implementing the program.


What is the fee for the program? Does the program run on an annual basis?


There is an annual fee for the program, but that information is proprietary.

A: Q:


Do you inspect every shop and if so, who does the inspections?


Is there an optimum number of shops you want to have and if so, how close are you to reaching that number?

We are just south of 225 shops. There are about 300 Toyota dealers that have body shops, so an optimum number would be closer to 300.

A: Q: A:

Have you had any shops drop out and if so, why?

The program has been around for 20 years and several program administrators have come and gone in those 20 years. I have been with the program since late 2015, so I can’t really speak to what happened before. I would guess that a few shops left when a dealership buy/sell took place and the new owner either was not interested in the program or closed the body shop altogether. The only shop that has dropped the program on my watch is a dealer in Alaska. They had a very tough time keeping technicians. A tech would no sooner get trained, at great expense to the dealership, and then they would leave and the dealer would have to start all over again. Techs were leaving the shop to work on fishing boats.

Q: A:

How long does it take for a shop to become certified?

That depends on a lot of factors. All Toyota collision shops in a dealer’s market are eligible to earn certification. Once shop location is confirmed, the initial review is conducted. Then the techs need to take the requisite training, the shop may need to buy some equipment and all standards must be achieved. So the whole process can take three to six months.

Does Toyota offer any brandspecific training as part of the certified program?


Yes. We do require repair & refinish technicians at the shop to be Toyota-specific trained at one of



our four training centers in the U.S. where we offer hands-on training. In addition to training the personnel at our certified shops, we also train, at those four centers, any independent shop. An independent shop only has to be sponsored by a Toyota dealer. These would likely be shops that work closely with the dealer, especially those dealers who do not have their own body shop.

Does Toyota do any marketing or promotion to Toyota owners to make them aware of the Toyota-certified shops?


We have several customer communication programs and in almost all cases, we tag-on some sort of message about our certified network. The program has a specific page on the Toyota Owners website: (


Does Toyota have a magazine or some sort of communication piece for the certified network?

Q: A:

For years, we have produced a quarterly magazine called

CollisionPros. It is distributed as a ride-along with ABRN magazine. All industry shops may obtain a free digital subscription by enrolling at Also, our certified dealers can get extra copies if they want.



What is your biggest challenge in maintaining the net-

I see three things. First, making sure shops keep up with their training. Second, having the shops attract, find and keep quality technicians. And third, growing the next generation of technicians. I see many quality technicians aging out of the industry. We need to find others to replace them.


Based on the recent John Eagle verdict, will you make any changes to your program?


I don’t foresee making any changes based on that. However, the John Eagle verdict is certainly a turning point for the auto


See Toyota, Page 69

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Media and Publicity for Shops with Ed Attanasio

Ed Attanasio is an automotive journalist based in San Francisco, California. He can be reached at

Fill the Void—How to Find and Retain Good Employees You’re short a technician and an estimator, and your last painter took a job to paint government vehicles for the city because they’re going to pay his medical insurance and offered him a pension. How can a small independent shop (or even an MSO, for that matter) compete with that? What happens when your business is booming and the cars are lining up to be repaired, and suddenly you don’t have the people in place to do the work? For how long can your existing employees work overtime and weekends to catch up before they suffer from major burnout? Comebacks caused by shoddy work are often performed by overloaded and exhausted techs, and after a while it becomes a vicious cycle. Your DRPs are unhappy and after a while, they will start looking elsewhere.


Don’t feel alone. It’s getting increasingly more difficult to find the best people who can fit into your company culture and contribute to your organization. And once you have them on staff, what do you do to keep them onboard?

cruiting efforts in a big way. So, here are some suggestions on how to find good employees and keep them in the fold, because in the end, you’re only as good as the people who work for you. Loni Amato, the owner of In-

I interview body shop owners all over the country all the time, and their #1 concern is how to find good techs, painters, estimators, front office people and customer service representatives. The shortage of talented and well-trained collision professionals is a problem that isn’t going to get any better, so proactive shops are now investing in marketing and re-

genious Solutions, worked in Silicon Valley for many years and helped a wide range of different companies with their staffing and recruitment. By using several of the techniques listed here, Amato was able to find top talent and keep them onboard. “In any service-oriented, consumer-facing company, the strategies

“In the end, it comes down to identifying your needs and continually working to fill them with the best people you can find” — Loni Amato


are basically the same,” Amato said. “In the end, it comes down to identifying your needs and continually working to fill them with the best people you can find. Many shops find the right people and say, ‘Okay, our work is done.’ But that’s a mistake, because you never know when someone will move, find a better job or retire, for that matter. MSOs have a definite advantage over independent shops when it comes to recruiting and retaining talented people. One of the main reasons is that many chains maintain fully staffed human resources departments that mom-andpop shops can’t compete with.” Assemble your own inventory of candidates Shops that hire new employees based on the candidates who walk in their door or answer an ad in the paper or online are often missing out on the

best candidates. “Some of the best people in the collision industry are likely working for someone else and they may not even be considering a new position elsewhere,” Amato said. “So, here are several simple steps that can help you put more qualified names in your pool of job candidates. By assembling your own inventory of possible candidates, you won’t have to restart the hiring process from scratch every time. The key is to assemble your candidate pool before you need it.” • Invest time in developing relationships with tech school placement offices, recruiters and other organizations that help people find viable careers.

• Enable your current employees to actively participate in industry professional associations and conferences where they are likely to meet candidates you may successfully woo. • Check job boards for potential candidates who may have resumes

online, even if they’re not currently looking.

• Use professional association websites and magazines to advertise for professional staff.

• Look for potential employees on LinkedIn and other social media outlets. Bring in your best prospects to meet them before you need them. “I do not encourage poaching employees from the shop down the street for obvious reasons,” Amato said. “Instead, the goal is for you to be in the right place at the right time when someone starts looking around to make a move.” Stay connected to your local schools Engage with the tech schools in your area and play a role as a mentor. If you can get young people to work at your shop, they will likely attract some of their classmates and/or graduates. “Some shop owners work with local schools through mentoring programs,” Amato said. “If you want to hire fairly inexperienced people and then train them to do the job your

way, this is an ideal strategy.” Establish an employee referral program Human Resources departments at large corporations have strong employee referral systems that have become their bread and butter for attracting and hiring top people. One shop owner told me that one of his technicians had brought him three top estimators and one highly experienced painter through his company’s employee referral program, earning more than $5,000 in bonuses as a result. Some of these programs offer generous bonuses, including things like all-expense paid vacations, tickets to concerts and sporting events, etc. for employees who refer their friends and associates. Instead of conducting “cattle calls” and interviewing semi-qualified people, why not find top candidates through the connections your existing employees already have established? You will quickly find out that good body techs hang out with other good body techs, as do painters, estimators, etc. Build from within and reward


top work Providing promotional and lateral opportunities for current employees positively boosts morale and makes your current staff members feel their talents, capabilities and accomplishments are appreciated. Always post positions internally first. “I always tell shop owners to give potential candidates an interview, even if they are not currently looking for new people,” Amato said. “It’s a chance for you to know them better. They learn more about the goals and needs of the organization.” Be known as a great employer Amato makes a strong case for not just being a great employer, but also letting people know that you are a great employer. “This is how you build your reputation and your company brand,” Amato said. “You’ll want the best prospects seeking you out because they respect and want to work for your brand. Google, which frequently tops Fortune’s Best Companies list, for example, receives around 3,000,000 applications a year.”

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Historical Snapshot with John Yoswick

—John Yoswick is a freelance writer based in Portland, Oregon, has been writing about the automotive industry since 1988. He is the editor of the weekly CRASH Network (for a free 4-week trial subscription, visit Contact him by email at

Problems With Non-OEM Radiators Led to CAPA Certification Program 20 Years Ago in the Collision Repair Industry (May 1998) The Collision Industry Conference (CIC) task force considering alternatives to the current method of calculating shop compensation for paint materials has drawn up a list of proposed guidelines for any new paint materials calculations system. The task force, which includes collision repairs, insurers, auto and paint manufacturers and estimating system providers, has called for a system that: • is based on surface area of the part being refinished, as provided by the manufacturer of that part; • includes no caps; • uses a multiplier for repaired (versus new) panels; • includes as “refinish materials” only those items listed as such in the Mitchell guide; • includes all refinish surfaces or areas with no deduction for overlap of adjacent panels; • includes a blend allowance that averages 50 percent of materials calculated for full painting of a panel; and • offers different allowances based on the use of different VOC-content products.

Representatives of CIC and the task force said some members of the industry have voiced concerns about changing the current system. But Phil Cunningham of Motor Information Systems pointed out that the changes are inevitable. His company’s customers, he said, have asked Motor to create a refinish materials estimate system, just as Mitchell International has. “So we are going to develop one,” Cunningham said. “We [have] also been told that the current method that takes a rate multiplied by an hourly refinish allowance is not preferred. The method that is preferred is a rate times the surface area. They’re going to be competing refinish materials estimating products out there. The question to the industry is: Does the industry want to be involved in developing the methodology on 34

which material estimating is predicated, or do they prefer the three information providers go off and each develop their own methodology?” – As reported in The Golden Eagle. A wide variety of alternative methods of calculating refinish materials have been proposed over the years, but no single one has gained widespread usage; only about 1-in-4 shops, for example, report using an alternative materials calculator / invoicing system.

15 Years Ago in the Collision Repair Industry (May 2003) The Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) last month gathered industry leaders from around the country to discuss what they see as key issues facing the industry, and to draft “position statements” based on those discussions. About 80 people, including shop owners and representatives of SCRS state and regional affiliate associations, attended the National Industry Issues Forum and voiced support for five “resolutions” created during the meeting. Perceived problems associated with third-party claims auditing, sometimes referred to as “desk audits” or “remote audits,” were among the issues generating the most discussion during the meeting. The group agreed that a starting point in addressing the problem would be for the CIC to develop some definitions of such terms as “desk audit” and “third-party administrator,” which are often used interchangeably. Shop owners pointed out that “remote auditing” may actually violate some state laws, which can require physical inspection of the vehicle or licensing of claims adjusters, appraisers or estimates. Among the practices of some third-party claims auditors that the group listed to be addressed were: taking of arbitrary discounts without explanations; sending payment without explanation of what was charged on the estimate; not using one estimating system, but “cherry-picking” labor times or procedures from multiple systems; and seeking shop


agreement prior to providing paperwork to the shop. Shops at the event said they are again more frequently being told certain items are part of their “shop overhead” and thus not billable; again, the group felt CIC could assist by revisiting its definition or explanation of “overhead.” – As reported in Autobody News. 10 Years Ago in the Collision Repair Industry (May 2008) Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty last week signed into law legislation backed by the Alliance of Automotive Service Providers of Minnesota (AASP-MN) that prohibits an insurer from “unilaterally and arbitrarily disregard(ing) a repair operation or cost identified by an estimating system (that) an insurer and collision repair facility have agreed to utilize in determining the cost of repair.”

The language was not as strong as that originally proposed which, without using the term “arbitrarily,”

In 2008, Judell Anderson of the Alliance of Automotive Service Providers of Minnesota helped enact a state law prohibiting an insurer from “unilaterally and arbitrarily disregard(ing) a repair operation or cost identified by an estimating system.”

prohibited failure to use an estimating system in its entirety or refusing to compensate a shop for documented paint and materials charges identified through industry-recognized systems. Still, AASP-MN Executive DiSee Non-OEM Radiators, Page 47


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National News with Ed Attanasio

Ed Attanasio is an automotive journalist based in San Francisco, California. He can be reached at

Assured Performance Develops Technology to Provide Shop Accountability Scott Biggs, CEO of the Assured Performance Network, recently responded to our article from last month (OE Certifications, John Eagle Case Raise Questions of Accountability) to share what his company is doing for its member shops to help ensure they don’t end up like John Eagle Collision. Assured Performance is a nonprofit consumer advocacy organization that was created specifically to assist consumers identify certified collision repair providers that meet OEM requirements to properly and safely repair the next generation of vehicles using advanced materials and technology.

Q: A:


What did you think about the article?

Your article was a good callto-action, but it really didn’t

offer a viable solution. Well, we have made huge strides in that regard and that’s why I wanted to respond to the piece. We’ve made a significant investment in technology to try and give our shops the ability to control and deliver a better quality output. Tell us about the technology you’ve developed to add accountability and transparency for your network members.


Five years ago, we approached several IP companies and other tech companies to build something, and they all said no. So, years later, we decided to build it ourselves, actually hoping that some other companies would predictably try to build something better once they saw it. This year, we are finally seeing some other companies coming up with pieces of the puzzle in an attempt to emulate or



improve what we’re doing, and that’s fine because it just feeds the need. There are three main reasons and benefits for having this app, which we call our Quality Assurance and Control System (OE-OC). For one, if you think about the John Eagle case, how does a shop mitigate their liability exposure and avoid it from happening to them? There are shops out there right now that are scared by this landmark case and are looking around for a solution. By law, you want to make sure as a shop owner that certain things take place. First, that all your technicians are following OE repair procedures and second, that everything is documented so that you have some sort of proof if you ever end up in court. Third, shops obviously don’t want re-dos, because that can cost them a fortune. If you have shoddy work going out the back of the shop, you’ll have a lot of un-

happy customers and DRPs as a result, so shops are already motivated to do quality work for obvious reasons. The response from shops about the OE-QC system has been very positive, but now the challenge is to get their technicians to use it. It’s an integration process that will probably take a year or even more to get shops to use it on an everyday basis. As other companies come out with their own versions of this system, we have no issues with that. If someone has a better product in this space, we’re happy for them. We did it because it was desperately needed at the time, but we know it’s not going to be the only solution. We now require our member shops to adopt this tool or another tool that is functionally equivalent to cover them with documentation and prove that their technicians are following and using OE repair procedures. As a shop owner, you want to

cover your act. [You want to] have accountability from your technicians and produce a better quality product—it is really that simple. So we built this tool and tried to keep it as simple as we could, because we know that if it’s too complex, no one will use it. [We decided to build] something that could allow the shop to quickly and easily identify what their technicians are doing through a limited number of clicks and by taking a few photos of the repair process. We also decided to create a quality checklist for all jobs based on the vehicle and the OE procedures that were used in the repair. We made it easy for technicians to be assigned to a repair then document it all right in their hands. It’s very seamless and feeds to the smart app easily, plus it’s all electronic and based on the shop’s data available to them through their management or estimating system. We built it, and then we streamlined it and finally realized that we needed to develop a system where specific technicians can be assigned to specific jobs based on their skill sets. So we created that part of the app and released it two days after the John

Eagle case was announced during our annual conference in Scottsdale, AZ. It was just serendipity, but the timing is indeed significant. If we wanted to charge shops for this app, it would cost them thousands of dollars every year. But because we internalized the cost of it and made it part of our certification, we’re able to give it to our certified shops at no cost. So now the shops will have the tools they need as OEs and insurers begin to jump onboard. As an example, General Motors recently announced that output quality documentation is fundamental to its future certification program. Our shops now have access to at least one tool to help them.

Q: A:

Tell us more about your repair compliance app?

This app transforms the shop’s estimate repair line information into an interactive checklist on the technician’s smart phone, tablet or desktop. Then in just seconds, the technician can use simple touch commands to take photos and provide other documentation as they follow

OEM repair procedures in the proper and safe repair of any vehicle. It allows management to review and approve the technician documentation and see alerts when no documentation is provided. This provides the shops with an efficient and cost effective ability to conduct robust quality assurance programs and build quality into the repair process based upon following OEM repair procedures where they exist. [The program’s simple touch-screen functionality only takes seconds for the technicians to properly document so as to not put quality control at risk or leave it to an unlikely third-party and after-the-fact spot check.]

Q: A:

What is ShopOps?

ShopOps is like a business toolbox. Inside of the program, shops will find many critical tools they need to help run their business. The Quality Assurance Program is one, but there are others too. For example, every shop should have a skills inventory based on the staff they have employed, but how many

shops actually know which of their technicians have what skills and are trained to repair what types of vehicles? That’s a pretty tall order for your average shop to do, so we’re working with I-CAR to give another tool to our shops as part of ShopOps. Inside this application there is a human resources feature functionality that enables the user to assemble and maintain a skills inventory for every employee they have. This way, they can keep track of each technician’s skills based on training or assessments they have, including I-CAR classes, OEM courses, ASE testing, and paint and equipment training classes. It becomes part of that particular shop’s skills inventory, which allows them to have the right mix of skills to accomplish the types of repairs they perform. That way, they can assign only the right technician to the job they’re trained to do and in the future, they can hire techs who can bolster their skills inventory while getting training for those who need more or specific knowledge and skills. This part of our efforts is focused on the foundation of this industry—employees and quality!

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Following OEM Procedures Will Help Avoid Surprises, Injuries, Delays by Stacey Phillips

Now more than ever, it is crucial to follow OEM procedures and focus on the operations of every vehicle during the repair process so there are no surprises, according to Jake Rodenroth, director of industry relations for asTech. “If certain procedures aren’t followed, you could either injure the person working on the vehicle or cause additional damage, which can lead to bill payer friction and delays,” Rodenroth said during a Guild 21 podcast in March, sponsored by Verifacts Automotive. During the podcast, Rodenroth, along with Doug Kelly, CEO of Repairify, and Bram Paris, director of calibration at asTech, shared information about some of the new vehicles and technology being introduced to the market. Kelly and Rodenroth spoke about pre- and post-scanning and recalibration during a prior Guild 21 podcast in January. “There are things that I think as repairers, we’re missing the boat on—fundamental skills that we’ve overlooked throughout the years,” said Rodenroth. “This is not going to get any easier. It’s going to get more complex.” He mentioned common repair procedures such as battery disconnects, changing a headlight and taking off a mirror. “These are all steps that we do every day, but what we fail to realize is that in the last couple of years, those steps have changed,” he explained. “Scanning is the precursor to something much bigger and more complex on the calibration front,” said Kelly. “Cars produced today need this activity done and many people don’t understand it.” Paris highlighted Mazda’s Blind Spot Monitoring (BSM) system to demonstrate the importance of doing the necessary research to ensure a proper repair. “Even though the system is described the same way and, from a vehicle owner’s perspective, behaves the same way, actually Mazda has three different variations of the same BSM system,” he said. “However, it wouldn’t be obvious to anyone look42

ing at the vehicle.” All three versions are part of Mazda’s I-Activsense package and use the same icons and indicators; however, the vehicle detection pattern is different between version one and versions two and three. Although the three systems don’t outwardly look any different to consumers, Paris said they work dif-

very similar to Version 2 in the way it functions. It has the same detection area and technical benefits and uses Doppler radar. The difference is the way in which it calibrates. Version 3 uses the same reflector as Version 1. Paris said that with all three versions, there are detailed procedures required to set the reflector or Doppler simulator in a very specific

ferently, react to the environment differently and are calibrated differently. BSM Version 1, mainly on Mazda’s models prior to 2016, uses radar-based detection. The sensing area on these early builds is small, approximately 23 feet, which Paris said isn’t a lot of space to pick out a car in a blind spot. “Because BSM is subjective to a person’s blind spot, 23 feet may or may not detect a vehicle in that person’s blind spot,” he said. A vehicle with Version 1 cannot detect a car coming into the blind spot or leaving, and only senses a vehicle in its detection area. It is unable to detect speed or distance. One of the most important differences between this version and Version 2 is that a reflector is required to calibrate the system. BSM Version 2 is only applicable to 2016–2018 Mazda XC-3 and MX-5 vehicles and uses Doppler radar. Another difference between Versions 1 and 2 is that the detection area is significantly larger—about 164 feet. “The system is much more intelligent,” he said. “It can actually detect a vehicle entering and exiting that zone.” This version can monitor the speed of the Mazda and detect the speed and distance of a vehicle entering the blind spot. Rather than using a reflector, Version 2 requires a Doppler simulator for a radar test to determine if the sensors are mounted correctly and working as designed. This device is specific to these types of vehicles. BSM Version 3, used on 2016 CX-9 Mazdas and future models, is

place to test the vehicle and know it is within OEM specifications and calibrated correctly. “It’s very important that the OEM procedures get followed and OEM equipment is used to do that,” he added. Rodenroth then shared examples of three new vehicles with complex technology: the 2018 Cadillac CT6, the 2018 Audi 8 and the 2018 Buick Regal.

“Scanning is the precursor to something much bigger and more complex on the calibration front. Cars produced today need this activity done and many people don’t understand it.” — Doug Kelly


2018 Cadillac CT6 With multiple substrates on this vehicle, Rodenroth said joining methods need to be followed correctly, or else a repairer will fail to have electrical continuity throughout the car. A fully loaded CT6 is equipped with a Bose Panaray sound system, which includes 34 speakers in the vehicle. “I think about collision repairers and the amount of interior trim that we take out for protection and welding operations,” said Rodenroth. “Did we plug them all in? These are things that can easily be missed that will cause heartburn when we deliver that vehicle.” The CT6 also includes a Super Cruise capability, which allows for hands-free driving on “approved” highways. “It’s a very intelligent system and uses a concert of sensors in the car to make sure the system is working properly,” he added. 2018 Audi 8

See OEM Procedures, Page 46

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Product Innovation with Stacey Phillips

Stacey Phillips is a freelance writer and editor for the automotive industry. She has 20 years of experience writing for a variety of publications, and is co-author of “The Secrets of America’s Greatest Body Shops.” She can be reached at

Dave Kindig Fronts New Custom Paint Line: Modern Classikk Kindig by Stacey Phillips

Dave Kindig launched a new custom paint line, Modern Classikk Kindig, in April, with Akzo Nobel. Kindig, the owner of Kindig-It Design in Salt Lake City, UT, and star of the hit Velocity show “Bitchin’ Rides,” collaborated with the automotive refinish company to share their passion for color and paint. Autobody News sat down with Kindig to discuss the development of the paint line and what automotive professionals can expect. “A renowned master craftsman, Dave Kindig is a visionary who truly understands the endless hours of hard work that go into turning a unique vision into a reality,” said Darlene Eilenberger, North American marketing manager of AkzoNobel vehicle refinishes. “He’s spent years honing his skills in the art of restoration and knows that nothing less than perfection will do when it comes to choosing the right color for a ride.” Congratulations on the launch of Modern Classikk. Can you tell us about the collaboration with AkzoNobel?


Thank you very much. It has been a great partnership and it’s very exciting to introduce Modern Classikk to the market. It all started when I met a gentleman at the SEMA show in Las Vegas, Nevada, a few years ago who worked at AkzoNobel. He introduced me to some of the executives at the company and they flew out to talk to me about creating a custom paint line. It was exactly what I wanted to do.


What were some of the important criteria when creating Modern Classikk?


I had always wanted to create a high-end, good Europeanbased paint system, so it was a perfect match. It was amazing to be able to work with the guys who do pigment development in Troy, Michi-



gan, to create custom colors. Having a company that has a chemical system that actually works and has been proven was the most important thing for me right out of the gate.

team and I really connected, and they immediately understood what I was saying and my vision. I felt that we were able to speak the same lingo. Most designers and custom builders want to show off the shape of the vehicle. We call that flop, color shift or Chroma. Basically, we wanted those aspects to add to the work that goes underneath the paint so it brings out all the shape and the work of the car. By having that color shift, you are able to identify the sharp lines of the body and the different angles of the body down the side, which adds a Modern Classikk Kindig’s “Teal Later” was used on a 1958 lot of depth. When shops are Lincoln Continental named “Maybellene,” which was showcased during the Los Angeles Classic Car Show in going to be spraying our February paint, they’re going to be able to show off the shapes of the clasCan you tell us about the sic cars, or whatever they are painting, process involved to create the to really amplify and direct the eye to new paint line?


I had so many colors in mind. It’s very easy for me to come up with colors and imagine what they will look like based on my experience. I’ve been drawing cars since I was a little kid and of course still do it professionally now. I had

the car and see the depth, shape and characteristics of the vehicle. I think that’s really the biggest thing for us, is having that depth—the ability to get the depth where it looks like a candy paint job but it’s something that can be touched up easily. We currently have four reducers and depending on the technology, up to 25 Basecoat colors, such as Sweet and Sour, Ruby Slippers and one of my favorites, Teal Later. There will be additional colors launching throughout the year and beyond.

Can you tell us about the color ‘Teal Later’ and how you came up with that name?


It was actually really funny. We were in a large meeting room and going over the final colors we had developed together. I remember standing next to the window and I looked at



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these ideas of how pigments could look and how you could have shift and depth. Working with the color lab at AkzoNobel, [which does] a lot of the color development for cars such as McLaren, was a really natural fit. The




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the spray card of Teal Later and I couldn’t let it go. I was just blown away. It was everything I had envisioned. I looked over at everyone at the table and they had a big smile on their faces, and I had a big smile on my face. They asked me what I wanted to name it. I didn’t know right then, but later the name Teal Later just clicked. You can see how the color flops. On the highlights, the color looks violet-blue and on the lower lights it looks teal. I thought, ‘It’s violet-blue now and will be teal later.’ That’s why we called it Teal Later. The name is so awesome. We had a blast coming up with the colors. The creative juices were really flowing. I’ve enjoyed my experience every time I’ve been there, but that is one of the days that stood out the most. What are some of the characteristics of the paint that make it unique?


I think it’s a combination of the vision of the colors I had— I’m very passionate about that—and that they are timeless. It’s also a high quality of paint. The actual liquid it-


self is composed properly, it’s easy to use and the results are great. I’m extremely excited about it.

What has the reaction been from your employees at KindigIt Design?


At the shop, everyone is very excited about it. Bryce Green, the body shop manager, is very passionate about Modern Classik and he is very quality-minded. He has told me, ‘You’re making my job easier because I have a great product that works and it’s exciting because it’s new and different from everyone else’s.’ We’re filming season five of ‘Bitchin’ Rides’ right now and we’ll be featuring a lot of the colors from Modern Classikk. We’re currently working on a fantastic vehicle. I can’t divulge anything about it until the show is aired but I think it’s going to blow a lot of people’s socks off! For more information, visit https: //


Continued from Page 42

OEM Procedures

Considered a mild-hybrid vehicle, the 2018 Audi 8 has a 48-volt electrical system onboard. Historically, it has been an aluminum vehicle since 1992, but a hybrid construction is expected in 2019, which Rodenroth said will change how the vehicle is repaired. The Audi A8 uses a nine-and-a-half horsepower electrical supercharger, which he said is the first engine of its kind in a production vehicle. “This is where those fundamental skills that we have to research play such a big role,” he said. “Things like battery disconnect and making sure our employees aren’t electrocuted when they are servicing a vehicle like this.” 2018 Buick Regal The Buick Regal uses a “rope” impact sensor, which is embedded inside of the absorber ahead of the rebar behind the bumper cover. “When you look at it, you need to treat these systems very much like a live airbag system,” said Rodenroth. The vehicle requires a very spe-

cific enable-and-disable procedure similar to airbags. The front bumper cover on the Buick Regal is not repairable. If damage is found, the bumper fascia or sensor system will need to be replaced. In addition, the hood, hinges and two actuators will need to be replaced if there is a deployment. “Think about a technician who happens to be leaning on a bumper cover and the system is not disabled,” said Rodenroth. “There could be a deployment and cause damage to the car.” Although very few people will have the opportunity to work on some of the more complex vehicles being introduced, Rodenroth said it gives repairers some insight about what they can most likely expect to be included in the mainstream cars of the future. “All of this technology is coming out like a fire hose and affects us in the repair center when we are trying to repair-plan around all of this,” he said. “This will change the entire repair cycle, claims process and even the customers shops interface with on a daily basis,” he said.

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Non-OEM Radiators

ACA Joins Trade Groups to Address Tariffs

The Auto Care Association joined with more than 100 trade groups April 11 to express concern to Congress regarding the Trump Administration’s decision to use tariffs to address China’s unfair trade practices. In the letter addressed to the Chair and ranking member of the House Ways and Means Committee, the groups stated China’s “ongoing intellectual property rights violations, forced technology transfers and state intervention harm U.S. companies, workers, consumers and our competitiveness.”... “the proposed tariff list, and escalating tariff threats made by the administration, however, will not effectively advance our shared goal of changing these harmful Chinese practices.” “We are pleased to stand together with this broad range of industries in order to demonstrate our shared concerns to Congress and the Trump Administration over the possible imposition of tariffs that are already having a negative impact, Bill Hanvey, president and CEO, Auto Care Association.

rector Judell Anderson views the legislation as a win for the industry. “Under this bill, insurers will no longer be able to selectively use these estimating systems,” she said. – As reported in CRASH Network (, May 12, 2008. CRASH Network in 2009 interviewed Minnesota shops about the impact of the law six months after it went into effect. “It’s still all over the board who is paying what, but we’re seeing changes,” one shop owner said. “It’s improved the awareness and understanding of the P-pages.” More insurers, he said, are paying for feather, prime and block operations, and for de-nib and polish. Another shop owner said, “Where it’s helped us is with wheel alignments and mechanical labor. Some insurance companies like to pay a flat price for wheel alignments or say that procedures designated in the (estimating system) as mechanical labor are body labor. Now I hold up the book and say we use the whole book and nothing

but the book.” He pointed out the law allows for deviations from an estimating system if agreed to by the insurer and shop, so thought it probably hadn’t helped shops on DRP programs. “But it has helped shops that are not on the programs do a lot better in quite a few areas,” he said. “It allows me to say, ‘We’ve got a law, and we only deal with law-abiding companies.’” Montana lawmakers passed similar legislation in 2011. 5 Years Ago in the Collision Repair Industry (May 2013) Speaking at the Automotive Body Parts Association (ABPA) convention this month, Jack Gillis of the Certified Automotive Parts Association (CAPA) said his organization is working on certification requirements for air conditioning condensers and radiators. “We did some preliminary testing on very popular radiators, and we found there are some problems,” Gillis said. “There are great radiators out there and there are not-so-great radiators out there. One of the issues is that radiator failures generally occur six to 18 months down the road when the consumer has forgotten they even

had the radiator put into their vehicle.” Gillis said CAPA compared nine non-OEM radiators to their OEM counterparts for the 2004–07 Chevrolet Silverado, the 2005–07 Honda Accord and the 2000–07 Ford Taurus.

In 2013, Jack Gillis of the Certified Automotive Parts Association (CAPA) said his organization found problems with non-certified non-OEM radiators

Seven of the nine, Gillis said, failed to match the OEM part. Problems found, he said, included radiator caps that failed pressure testing, premature corrosion issues, leaks dues to poor welding and tube fractures. – As reported in CRASH Network (, May 27, 2013. Two years later, CAPA began certifying non-OEM radiators. Gillis retired from CAPA this year after nearly three decades leading the organization.

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Day Job/Night Job with Ed Attanasio

The Amazing Art of Chris Harsh

lucky to meet Bryan Hilleary, who was willing to teach me how to paint. He told me that he would teach me everything he knows and pay me while I was learning, so it was a perfect situation. Over the years, we’ve worked together a few times at different shops, so we’ve been friends for a long time now.” Looking back on his career as a painter, there were a few obstacles along the way, but Harsh always stayed positive and focused on doing a good job wherever he worked. “I was painting camper shells for a while, and that’s definitely a completely different way of working,” Harsh said. “They prepped the shells and loaded them in the booth and I was spraying like a robot. It wasn’t challenging at all, but I could work fast and log eight hours after working only 4–5 hours.” A technical instructor at the AkzoNobel training facility in Always looking for a silver Orange, CA, Chris Harsh is also a highly talented artist lining in every cloud, Harsh Harsh, 41, who is married with used the camper shell job to learn anthree children, started painting cars other valuable skill that would later in high school back in the 1990s, but help him in his current position as a can still vividly remember his very teacher. first body/paint job. “Most of the preppers there “My grandfather left me an old were Hispanic, so I took the oppor1970 Chevelle,” he said. “He was the tunity to learn Spanish,” he said. original owner, so it needed some “Talking to them every day really work. But I got it running, so once I helped, and now I am completely got my license, I was ready to drive. I proficient in Spanish. I am officially worked on the car one summer in my friend’s garage and he showed me how to mix up some body filler. I started sanding the car, fixing dents and applying the primer, and eventually I painted it yellow. People to this day still remember that big yellow car.” Once he realized that he Harsh’s creations are hanging on walls all over the world liked painting cars, Harsh landed a job working for a collision a bilingual instructor, and recently I center in Huntington Beach, CA, was in Mexico City training the Akwhere he met his first mentor. zoNobel technical crew there. I have “I started working there the day met Spanish-speaking painters from I turned 18, so yes—I was ready to all over the country, and connecting work and learn,” Harsh said. “I was with them through language is very When he isn’t working as a technical instructor at the AkzoNobel training facility in Orange, CA, Chris Harsh is pursuing his passions—skateboarding, surfing and art. Thanks to his unique style and integration of different aspects of his background into his paintings, Harsh is getting rave reviews for his seascapes, tree images and even some abstract work that he’s been experimenting with recently.



Ed Attanasio is an automotive journalist based in San Francisco, California. He can be reached at

rookie or a veteran,” he said. “If I can make them better painters and teach them something they didn’t know in one of our three-day classes or by coming to their shop, [that is] even more gratifying.” Back in 2002, Harsh was working at a Buick, Pontiac and Mazda dealership, where he became interested in pinstriping. “On the Buicks at that time, they featured handpainted pinstripes, so I started watching their pinstripper in action,” he said. “He gave me Some of his creations use AkzoNobel paint, which is applied some tips and some of his to paint can lids oldest brushes. I got a kit and AkzoNobel products was immedi- practiced, and after a while I got pretty good at it. That kind of fueled my art ately attractive to him. “I really enjoy what I’m doing career.” Seven years later, Harsh began because I am able to share my knowledge and experience with so many working with ink markers and penSee Chris Harsh, Page 64 different people, whether they’re a satisfying.” After 23 years on the body shop side, Harsh was ready to enter a new chapter. Teaching people how to use / MAY 2018 AUTOBODY NEWS


WIN Event Highlights Talent Development, Career Management in Collision Industry by Stacey Phillips

The Women’s Industry Network (WIN) held an industry networking event in March at Pacific Elite Collision in Downey, California. During the event, attendees had the opportunity to learn more about WIN, listen to an interactive panel discussion about talent development and career management in collision repair, as well as network with others in the industry. “This was a great opportunity to not only network with local females in the collision repair segment, but also to learn more about WIN and the WIN mission,” said Denise Kingstrom, the

5 how-to’s for women in the collision repair industry based on the panel discussion: How to communicate effectively with male counterparts: Panelists discussed female communication styles in the workplace and offered tips on how to better communicate. These included communicating logically and in a linear fashion as well as avoiding emotion and understanding that everyone has a prejudice of some sort. “We are there to do a job and to stay laser-focused on what the goals of our position are,” said Wagner,

During the WIN event, attendees had the opportunity to learn more about WIN and listen to an interactive panel discussion

North American refinish distribution director for BASF Corporation. Industry panelists represented a cross-section of experience and included Nicole Wagner, Group Talent Acquisition manager at Enterprise Holdings of Southern California; Liz Stein, VP of Business Development & Marketing at Assured Performance Network; and Andie Rittinger, sales representative for BASF Corporation. During the panel discussion, the representatives talked about some of the challenges they have faced and why they decided to join the industry. Panelists also provided advice for those looking to work in collision repair. “I think as women, building credibility is much more difficult and it can be constantly exhausting to have to prove yourself,” said Rittinger. “I think if you are persistent, consistent and can add value, you can get anywhere.”



who has 23 years of experience in the auto rental industry and represented the HR/talent acquisition perspective.

How to be viewed as an expert: Attendees talked about the issue of women who feel they need to “prove themselves” in the industry, both externally with customers and internally with male co-workers and supervisors. After sharing stories of their own, the panelists stressed the importance of demanding to show expertise by demonstrating knowledge with customers and coworkers and ignoring overt biases at times.

How networking can make a difference: “Being part of professional associations and networking with organizations like WIN can help both professionally and personally. It is a great way to learn more about the industry and get outside your comfort zone,” said Kingstrom.



Wagner shared information about two professional organizations she belongs to outside of her company and how that participation is valuable.

“It has helped me navigate situations and network with people in my field,” she said. “Have a no-fear attitude about approaching women you respect in the field and never underestimate the value of a mentor.”

How to deal with work-life balance: Each of the panelists talked about work-life balance and what it meant to them personally, then reminded attendees to define their own balance as well. “Working mothers tend to shoulder a lot of guilt and feel like we are never good enough at home or on the job because time is so limited,” said

Wagner. “We have to release the guilt and focus on the example we are setting for our children by being mothers and providing for our families.”

How to manage others: Rittinger said that as a millennial, it’s important for her to have a purpose. “That doesn’t mean someone has to give me one. I want my manager to explain the ‘why’ to me, which allows me to find my purpose,” she said. She said rather than receiving “marching orders,” it is more motivating to understand why a decision was made. WIN is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to encouraging, developing and cultivating opportunities to attract women to collision repair while recognizing excellence, promoting leadership and fostering a network among the women who are shaping the industry. To join WIN or renew membership, visit https://thewomensindustry and click on “Join WIN” at the top of the page.



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Mopar Masters Guild Annual Meeting Mixes Business With Fun With the ultimate goal of becoming better managers in order to During this year’s NADA Show in deliver the best service to its cusLas Vegas, held March 22–25, 35 tomers, MMG is always promoting members of the Mopar Masters Guild open communication. This year, they (MMG) converged to network, attend focused even more intently on the meetings, elect its officers for 2018 topic. and enjoy a little fun along the way. Some of the highlights during the annual meeting included presentations from FCA/Mopar executives and supporting vendors. “Our vendors play an important role and we are always anxious to meet with them and find out how they can help us as members and as an organization,” McDaniel said. “With six tier-one and seven tier(l to r) MMG Secretary Mike Opperman, President Susan two vendors on our roster, McDaniel, Barbara Davies from Autobody News, Vice they make us stronger and President Joe McBeth and Treasurer Don Cushing at more effective through their MMG’s annual meeting in Las Vegas, March 22–25 efforts and that’s why we MMG President Susan Mc- greatly value their participation.” Daniel was re-elected for another Subjects that MMG members two years, along with several other discussed at the meeting included a officers who represent top dealership wide range of marketing and effiparts departments nationwide. ciency strategies and systems to do a McDaniel is encouraged by what better job. MMG was able to achieve during the annual four-day meeting. “When we get together, we’re able to share ideas about best practices. That’s invaluable because we can take what we’ve discussed and use it to improve our departments,” said McDaniel, who is the parts director at Bill Luke The formula for every MMG annual meeting is to work hard Dealerships in Phoenix, and share ideas, but also have a little fun too! The week AZ. “Networking is a huge ended with a party at Drai’s After Hours, located in the part of every year’s annual Cromwell Hotel in Las Vegas meeting and this year was surely no exception.” “We talked about a new tire Mopar is the parts, service and marketing program that’s designed customer care organization that sup- to sell more tires; customer strategies ports Fiat Chrysler Automobiles for recalls; the wiADVISOR™ and (FCA). Established in 1992, MMG’s how to use it to process customers motto is “The exchange of informa- quickly and accurately and how to tion by like-size dealers in a non- get more customers to fill out surcompetitive environment.” veys and get better feedback from by Ed Attanasio

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them,” McDaniel said. “In addition, we discovered phone techniques that can be used to more effectively get back to customers more promptly, especially when departments are

the year. “Currently, Don Cushing is working on our database and soon we will be making a big push to build membership,” McDaniel said. “We will reach out to eligible candidates through our members to let them know that joining MMG will benefit them on many levels. It all starts with our members reaching out to their colleagues and associates and getting the word out to the right people.” During the meeting, the following individuals started their two-year terms:

(l to r) Marvin Windham (longtime member of MMG and Executive Committee), President Susan McDaniel and Laura Windham network at MMG’s annual meeting

busy and backed up. These types of presentations foster better communication, and that is one of the main advantages of being a member of the MMG.” Another goal that the organization discussed at its annual meeting was a member drive to add 30 active members to the group by the end of

President: Susan McDaniel, Bill Luke CJDR

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Secretary: Mike Opperman, Baxter Auto Group

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In Reverse

Gary Ledoux is an industry veteran with 48 years’ experience in the automotive and OEM collision parts industry. His column appears exclusively in Autobody News. He can be reached at

with Gary Ledoux

Duke, Dunk and DuPont—Tales from the 1930s Duke Norman Unless you happen to be a student of the collision repair industry, you’ve probably never heard of Duke Norman. But if you are a shop owner, estimator or adjuster, you likely use or benefit every day from the product he helped create. In 1938, Norman began his career in the body shop at Robertson Buick in Chicago. He knew little about the business at the time, but became a fast study. At that time, the only reference for collision repair times were factory bulletins—times based on removing and replacing undamaged parts on undamaged cars—an operation performed with considerably more effort when the car was damaged. Shop managers were making estimates based on common sense and their own experience. When the insurance adjuster came in to review the car, the shop manager and esti-

mator would both sit down and negotiate, in good faith, what was required to properly repair the car. Norman quickly saw that there was a need for some standardized times. Others in the industry had the same idea—but Norman did something about it. He began keeping track of the time it took to do a particular operation. He also noted that some technicians took longer or shorter times to do the same operation. After documenting the same operation 10 times, he calculated what the average time was to do that particular operation. At that time there were “a few” companies who began publishing repair data. National was one such company. Periodically, someone from National would stop by the shop, take Norman to lunch and pick his brain about what he was doing … and how he was doing it. Eventually,

in 1950, National offered him a job and thus, Duke Norman, Body Man became Duke Norman, Editor. But coming up with proper times was not enough. Norman had an idea that the books he produced needed exploding drawings. National didn’t want to change—and Norman felt frustrated. Then he met Glen Mitchell. Mitchell had a competing product to Norman’s—and hired him. In January 1958, Norman went to work for what would become Mitchell International. The Mitchell estimating books at that time were sold regionally, and Mitchell wanted to go national. Norman’s job was to build a sales force and figure out how to put illustrations in the manuals. With the proliferation of cars’ models in the late ‘50s and the need for more and better data, Norman’s

former employer could not keep up and was ready to fold. Mitchell stepped in, picking up the National subscribers—and Mitchell was off and running as a nationwide collision industry provider of repair information. To ensure the times Mitchell was using were fair and equitable for all parties, Norman organized meetings all over the country for shop owners, technicians, dealer associations and insurance companies to review repair times and operations. These meetings continued from 1963 to 1968. By the mid-1960s, the team of Duke Norman and Glen Mitchell had grown to 130 people. In 1972, the company was sold to Cordura, a technology-based company, with the intention of bringing Mitchell into the 20th century with new technology.

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In 1973, Norman suffered a stroke. The travel and long hours had caught up to him. He returned to work later that year and retired in 1976. Alfred Dunk Alfred Dunk died of pneumonia in California on March 6, 1936. He was only 61 years old. Few, if anyone, remember Dunk today, but if it had not been for him providing replacement parts to mechanical and body shops for early model vehicles, more cars would have hit the scrap heap at a much earlier age. Dunk was a pioneer in the replacement auto parts field and single-handedly responsible for helping keep probably tens of thousands of cars on the road. No doubt, many mechanics and body men praised him for his simple but visionary idea. During the earliest years of the automotive industry, scores of car companies were founded, lasted a few years, sold a few cars, then went bankrupt or otherwise disappeared. This left thousands of “orphaned” vehicle owners and repair shops with no way to get parts for repair and maintenance. Enter Alfred Dunk.

In 1908, two car manufacturers approached Dunk to set up a parts distribution system for them. The two companies would merge into a company called E-M-F and Dunk would handle parts distribution. Dunk then founded a company called Auto Parts Company and made himself president. By 1910, Dunk was doing such a good job, another car maker, Blomstrom, asked Dunk to distribute parts for them, which he did. Over time, and as more and more car manufacturers went out of business, Dunk found it advantageous to not only buy the manufacturer’s parts inventory, but also the blueprints and drawings so additional parts could be made. Dunk then formed another company called The Puritan Machine Company and began to manufacture parts as his inventory exhausted itself. A magazine article of the time touted that Dunk had parts or could make parts for 196 obsolete automobiles. In 1929, Dunk turned over to the National Automobile Chamber of Commerce, records for parts for 756 companies. Many early auto repairers and early body men certainly

knew and depended on his parts companies. Consider also that this pioneer of the auto parts business was born in 1875, the height of the cattle-drive era of the old west. DuPont Before it was known for its automotive refinish materials and a multitude of other diverse products, DuPont’s main product was gunpowder. In April 1801 (yes, that’s 1801, not long after the American Revolutionary War), the DuPont company was born. In the summer of 1803, its gunpowder factories in America were ready. E.I. DuPont himself sent word to President Thomas Jefferson that his company stood ready to provide gunpowder to the U.S. military as needed. The company called its product “Brandywine Powder.” In the ensuing years, DuPont was a major supplier of gunpowder for the U.S. military as well as other purposes. Through the War of 1812, WWI and other skirmishes, DuPont was there to help defend America. But in December 1934, things turned ugly. DuPont was called before the U.S. Senate Munitions In-

vestigating Committee to answer allegations of profiteering during WWI. Senator Gerald Nye, a Republican from North Dakota, chaired the committee. Ironically, between the end of WWI and 1935, DuPont had changed its product mix from 97 percent explosives to 95 percent non-explosives with a growing number of products aimed directly at consumers. DuPont had been, in a word, “burned” during WWI. They ramped up gunpowder production to a phenomenal level, expecting the war to last longer than it did. When it didn’t, DuPont executives decided they had better diversify. But the newspaper headlines didn’t see that part of DuPont’s business, and the company was viewed as a “merchant of death”—a public relations nightmare. Although some members of DuPont’s upper management still did not see the value in a positive corporate image, others did, and it was decided that something had to be done. In 1926, DuPont got into the sprayable lacquer business for auto See Tales from the 30’s, Page 68 / MAY 2018 AUTOBODY NEWS


NORTHEAST 2018 Panel Shares Tips to ‘Take Back Your Business’ by Chasidy Rae Sisk

On the first night of AASP/NJ’s NORTHEAST 2018, collision repair industry attorney Erica Eversman participated in a panel discussion titled “Take Back Your Business: A Legal Guide” alongside Larry Montanez of P & L Consultants and LIABRA Executive Director Ed Kizenberger. Examining the industry’s focus on proper repairs and following OEM procedures, these industry experts discussed navigating a shop owner’s legal responsibilities while balancing financial requirements. Starting with the Right to Appraisal (RTA) and the Assignment of Proceeds (AOP), Montanez stressed that these are first-party documents only and cannot be utilized as thirdparty documents. He also emphasized the importance of proper documentation in a very clean, organized file. Eversman said, “There is an appropriate time for various documents or various procedures to be pursued. You wouldn’t paint the car before you fixed it. You don’t necessarily want to do something like an AOP on the very first day someone walks in the door. “Part of the reason I say that is because your contract with your customer is to repair the vehicle and to be paid for the repair. The AOP is a separate contract in which your customer is giving you the right to stand in their shoes to collect what has not been properly paid by the customer’s insurance company in exchange for allowing the customer to not have to pay in full at that moment, so you will release the lien you properly have for repairing the vehicle. You’re allowed to keep that car until you’re paid in full. It’s like an IOU. It’s different; it’s a separate contract from the obligation the customer has, that they agreed to pay you. That timing issue is very important to understand.” According to Montanez, “You need a well-written Authorization to Repair and other documents that cover your liabilities. You need to explain the paperwork to the customer before they sign it, and you need to keep it organized because it could be evidence.” Montanez explained that in an RTA, both the customer and the shop 56

hire appraisers, and if the two parties can’t agree, the customer can elect to choose a third-party independent ad-

resort,” she said. Responding to an attendee’s question, Eversman advised that it’s rare to

During NORTHEAST 2018, a panel of industry experts discussed a legal guide to taking back your industry (pictured left to right: Erica Eversman, Kizenberger, Larry Montanez)

juster. If there’s still dissent, the judge will appoint an umpire to make the call. This prevents shops from needing to go to court and saves those expenses. An added benefit is that these situations can be useful for their precedential value. Eversman explained, “If you have positive umpire decisions that your customer has won, you can use those in later umpire scenarios. But you can also use those to submit to whatever respective DOI in your state to demonstrate this is an ongoing pattern or practice of this particular insurance company, [and] that they force their customers to go to these extreme lengths to get what they were entitled to under the insurance policy. So that could be an added advantage of going through the whole ugly process.” The RTA was started by the DOIs because they were tired of insurer/insured disputes over claim valuations. They created a mini-arbitration process to resolve issues without the court’s involvement, Eversman explained. “Some courts look at the RTA clause and want to know you made an attempt to resolve the conflict before you came to them, so always be in the position where you can assure the judge that you came to court as a last


successfully recover legal fees on a shortpay lawsuit. However, Montanez noted, “It’s not always about winning financially.

Sometimes, it’s about proving a point to the insurance companies and setting a precedent so they don’t want to fight with you. You’re not winning THAT case; you’re winning every one after it.” Eversman agreed. “Through multiple RTAs, you can establish your labor rate,” she said. “You get into something we call issue preclusion, which just says ‘We’ve already dealt with this exact issue, and you don’t get to bring it up and fight me on it every single time.’ That can be very helpful in court when you have that precedent, even if it’s just in small claims. This issue has been repeatedly decided and shouldn’t have to be continuously litigated just because the insurance company wants to argue about it over and over again.” The panelists discussed how liability for a proper repair falls solely on the shop and, in some cases, the technician. There are situations where it’s necessary to total a car because they’re meant to save people, but See Take Back Business, Page 69



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Tesla Says Autopilot Was Engaged During Model X Fatal Crash by Simon Alvarez, Teslarati

Tesla recently released an update confirming that Autopilot was activated on the ill-fated Model X when the SUV crashed into a concrete barrier in March near Mountain View, CA. According to the company’s update, the Model X’s Autopilot was engaged with the car’s adaptive cruise control set to minimum in the moments leading up to the crash. Tesla also noted that the Model X’s driver received several visual and

The aftermath of a fatal Tesla Model X accident. Credit: ABC News Radio/Twitter

one audible hands-on warning earlier on in the drive. The driver’s hands were not detected on the steering wheel for six seconds before the accident occurred as well. Ultimately, Tesla stated that the driver of the ill-fated Model X had about five seconds and 150 meters of unobstructed view of the concrete divider before the accident took place. Logs from the electric SUV, however, revealed that no action from the driver was taken. Tesla also highlighted that the absence of a crash attenuator—a highway safety device designed to absorb the impact of a collision— was a key reason why the fatal Model X crash was so severe. Tesla noted that it has “never seen this

level of damage to a Model X in any other crash.” As Teslarati noted in a previous report, the crash attenuator, better known as a crash cushion, was destroyed in a vehicular accident 11 days before the fatal Model X crash. This is in line with an image that Tesla provided on its first blog post about the incident, when the company showed a picture of the damaged crash cushion a day before the Model X’s collision. Local news agency ABC7 News was able to get in touch with the driver of the vehicle that collided with the crash cushion 11 days before the Tesla accident. According to the news agency, the previous crash involved James Barboza, who was driving a 2010 Toyota Prius at 70 mph. Barboza walked away from the crash with lacerations on his face and complaints of pain all over his body. The Toyota Prius driver was eventually arrested for driving under the influence. In a statement to ABC7, Steven Lawrence, a lawyer who specializes in highway safety, stated that the crash cushion, which could have saved the Model X driver’s life, should have been repaired long before the accident. According to Lawrence, 11 days is far too long to fix a crash cushion, especially in areas where the Model X accident took place. “Some states have as short as a three-day repair time for high traffic locations. And if you look at the material in California, this thing should have been repaired within a week. Again, there are a lot of questions about what happened and what went wrong, but it should have been re-

Toyota Suspends Self-Driving Test Program by Brandy Betz, Seeking Alpha

Toyota Motor Corp. has halted its Chauffeur self-driving system test program after the fatal pedestrian accident involving an Uber autonomous vehicle. Toyota’s statement to Bloomberg: “Because we feel the incident may have an emotional effect on our test drivers, we have decided to tem58

porarily pause our Chauffeur mode testing on public roads.” Toyota was doing on-road testing in Michigan and California and, before the accident, was discussing plans to team with Uber on autonomous driving. Toyota shares are up 1 percent to $129.12. We thank Seeking Alpha for reprint permission.


paired in under 11 days,” Lawrence said. On March 29, CalTrans issued a statement to the local news agency

The aftermath of a fatal Tesla Model X accident. Credit: ABC News Radio/Twitter

addressing the delay in its repair of the road safety device. While CalTrans admitted that the crash cushion should have been repaired within seven days after the 2010 Prius collided with the crash attenuator, the agency noted that storms in the area delayed the repair. “Once our maintenance team has been notified, the department’s goal is to repair or replace damaged guardrail or crash attenuators within seven days or five business days,

depending on weather. These are guidelines that our maintenance staff follows. “However, as in this case, storms can delay the fix. In this incident, as soon as maintenance was aware of the damaged attenuator, efforts were made to place cones or safety barricades at the site, and the replacement work was scheduled.” As noted in a previous report, the Tesla Model X has a 5-star safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) because of its safety features, such as its 12-airbag system and its huge crumple zone. Roughly 85,000 successful autopilot trips have been done by Tesla owners in the same stretch of road as the illfated Model X since the driver-assist feature was introduced in 2015, with around 200 trips being conducted every day. We thank Teslarati for reprint permission.

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Robot Cars: Safety and Liability

tems can be easily tricked or hacked. Virtually every automaker has The robots are coming—robotic cars, embarked on some sort of authat is. Are they safe? Will they be an tonomous driving program, scrambling to resolve technological issues economic boon or bust? According to the National High- to get to market. To date, little has way Traffic Safety Administration, in been done on the regulatory side to 2015, the last year for which it had ensure that these vehicles will not final statistics, car accidents were the crash when, say, a sensor fails or a dense fog rolls in. Some leading cause of death in the players in the car industry U.S. for 16- to 23-year-olds. have lobbied intensely to That year, 2.44 million peoavoid responsibility for ple were injured in car their vehicles on the road, crashes. In nearly one-third seemingly hiding defects in of all motor vehicle fatal actheir system by failing to cidents, alcohol played a comply with reporting rerole. Automated driving veAdam Blank quirements and fighting efhicles are being pitched to the public, legislators and regulators forts that would allow consumers to by industry groups on the premise, but hold them accountable for collisions not yet on the promise, that if we take they cause. Legislation must be crafted to away the drunk, drowsy and distracted human element and shift to automated allow these manufacturers to bring automated cars to the masses while driving, crashes will be eliminated. Vehicles equipped with auto- ensuring that manufacturers are remated driving systems will come in sponsible when their vehicles fail. many varieties. Some will need a Safety depends on accountability. If human driver, either to get to where manufacturers are allowed to evade the automation can take over or as a accountability, they have incentive to fallback in case the automated system create a potentially dangerous vehifails. Others are being designed never cle. This is a fraught time for the auto to allow human intervention by phys- industry—fortunes will be made and ically removing the steering wheel lost in automated driving, and withand pedals. However, all of these ve- out proper rules the public may be the hicles will share one defining charac- greatest victim. But, if we can get the teristic—when the automated driving rules right, this technology has the system is engaged, any human being potential to save millions of lives. Even if robotic cars can be in the vehicle is no longer in control. Removing humans from the wheel made safe, the question of their ecodoes not necessarily guarantee safety. nomic impact still looms. Business Today, we already see stories about and government must consider the the trouble automated vehicles have impact these cars will likely have on with bridges, turning left, bicycles or them, their employees and their conanimals in the road. Their vision sys- stituents. If, as anticipated, this techby Adam Blank, Westfair Online

James Roach Receives I-CAR Founder’s Award

James Roach, Immediate Past Chairman of the I-CAR® International Board of Directors, was awarded the Founder’s Award for his dedication and service to I-CAR at the 2018 I-CAR Volunteer & Instructor Conference held recently in San Antonio, TX. Roach was on the I-CAR International Board of Directors from 2011 to 2018. During that time, he served in various roles, including the I-CAR Executive Committee. Roach’s term as Chairman ran from 2016 to 2018. 60

“This is a wonderful surprise,” Roach stated, “I am personally humbled to have invested my time in I-CAR, working with so many industry people committed to helping I-CAR meet its vision that every person in the collision repair industry has the information, knowledge and skills required to perform complete, safe and quality repairs for the ultimate benefit of the consumer.”


nology can avoid all car crashes, it likely will alter insurance—potentially changing the profit structure of insurance companies and putting a dent into the business of auto body shops, insurance adjusters, medical professionals and attorneys. Theoretically, these vehicles will not violate traffic safety laws, so the $3 billion to $6 billion of revenue that governments receive annually from traffic tickets will evaporate and the police officers who write tickets will no longer be necessary. About 300,000 taxi drivers and upwards of 2 million truck drivers could be made jobless. Driverless cars coupled with ride-sharing systems, such as Uber and Lyft, may mean fewer privately owned vehicles and more fleets, hurting local car dealers and lessening demand for urban parking—a substantial revenue stream for municipalities and private businesses who have invested in costly parking structures. Automated driving vehicles also should have many positive economic benefits. Traffic congestion should


lessen substantially; this, coupled with a decline in travel costs, should make it easier for employers to hire employees from a wider geographic area. Shipping costs should decrease with the elimination of human drivers and the ability of robotic trucks to communicate with one another and travel in a “train” formation. An entirely new market will emerge for technology, entertainment and data companies as they compete to improve the car-riding experience by harvesting data on occupants and advertising to them, providing an “office” or “living room” on the road. The robots are coming. Whether they are safe or not, and how we maximize their economic potential, remains to be seen. Adam Blank serves on the State of Connecticut Task Force to Study Fully Autonomous Vehicles and is an attorney at Wofsey, Rosen, Kweskin & Kuriansky, where he practices in the areas of land use and personal injury law.

We thank Westfair Online for reprint permission.



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Uber’s Former Self-Driving Chief Still Believes in Dream of Safer Roads by Aaron Aupperlee,

The former head of Uber’s self-driving car operations urged the entire industry to keep working through what he called a “tough moment” to achieve safer streets and roads for all. John Bares, who left Uber in August and returned to Carnegie Robotics, said he has not lost faith in Uber or the promise of autonomous vehicles. “The company and the dream of the employees is a mode of transportation that is safer and more efficient for everyone, and clearly events like this are a huge step back, but the dream is still there,” Bares said. “And we’re going to get there.” Elaine Herzberg was killed March 18 when a self-driving Uber crashed into her as she walked her bike across a street in Tempe, AZ. Herzberg, 49, is believed to be the first pedestrian killed by a self-driving car. Uber suspended its testing of self-driving cars in Tempe, Pittsburgh, San Francisco and Toronto

ics asking whether development of autonomous vehicles is worth the risk it poses to pedestrians, cyclists and other motorists as these cars are tested on city streets. Bares said the crash caused pain and difficult conversations not just at Uber, but across the many companies working in the field. More than 40,000 people died in traffic crashes in 2017. It’s a statistic that nearly anyone involved in self-driving cars knows by heart and is working to John Bares, director of the new Uber Advanced Technologies lower. Center in Lawrenceville, speaks during a panel discussion of the closing plenary June 3, 2015, at the ITS (Intelligent “It’s going to be tough on Transportation Systems) America’s 25th Annual Meeting people emotionally,” Bares and Expo at the David Lawrence Convention Center. said. “As an industry, we Credit: James Knox, Trib Total Media have to pull through. For the Tempe police and officials from longer good of humanity, we have to the National Highway Traffic Safety pull through.” Toyota announced the week of Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board are in- March 18 that it was halting its selfvestigating. Uber has said it is coop- driving operations in the wake of the crash. Boston’s mayor last year asked erating with the investigation. The crash threw the self-driving nuTonomy and Optimus Ride, two car industry into a tailspin with crit- self-driving car companies testing in

following the crash. The fleets remained grounded March 26, more than a week later, as the investigation into the crash continued.

the city, to pause testing. Hyundai, which partnered with Aurora Innovation this year to develop self-driving cars, said it is cautious about mass producing autonomous vehicles, according to Reuters. Aptiv, which bought nuTonomy last year and has a large engineering center in Pittsburgh where it is developing self-driving technology, did not stop tests in Las Vegas and elsewhere, a company spokesman said. Argo AI, which is testing cars in Pittsburgh for Ford, has also continued testing, a Ford spokesman said. Waymo CEO John Krafcik, talking about the Tempe crash at the National Automobile Dealers Association in Las Vegas, said its self-driving car could have “handled that situation,” according to Forbes. Waymo, Google’s self-driving car company, is planning to begin an autonomous car service with no driver behind the wheel in the Phoenix area this year. Raj Rajkumar, a long-time autonomous vehicles researcher at Carnegie Mellon University, told USA Today that the Uber’s lidar and



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sensors should have picked up the woman long before the car hit her. “Clearly there’s a problem,” Rajkumar said. “Maybe it’s the sensors not working correctly or the hardware that processes it, or the software.” In an email to Bloomberg, Marta Thoma Hall, the president of Velodyne, which makes the lidar sensors used by Uber, wrote the crash “baffled” the company. “Certainly, our lidar is capable of clearly imaging Elaine and her bicycle in this situation. However, our lidar doesn’t make the decision to put on the brakes or get out of her way,” Hall said. The New York Times reported that Uber’s tests in Arizona were struggling and the team was scrambling to prepare for an upcoming visit from new CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, who at first wanted to shutter the self-driving car project. The safety driver inside an Uber had to take control more often than the company would like. Bares said he was not concerned about Uber’s self-driving program when he left. Uber lured Bares away from

Carnegie Robotics, a company he helped found, to start its Advanced Technologies Group. Improving safety and saving lives has been at the core of Bares’ nearly 40 years of work in robotics. In the early 1980s, Bares worked on robots that went into Three Mile Island Nuclear Generating Station after its partial meltdown. Carnegie Robotics designed robots to detect land mines and improvised explosive devices. At Uber, Bares wanted to prevent traffic deaths and injuries. “Can we make our roads safer?” Bares asked in a 2016 interview. “That’s the thing that tugs me, and I think we can do that over time.” Bares left Uber in August and returned to Carnegie Robotics. He said he was thrilled with his time at Uber. He said Uber’s operation grew to the point where he wanted to return to the small company he helped start. We thank for reprint permission.

Think Genuine Subaru Parts.

Continued from Page 24

Todd Tracy

cause you’re here, because you care, because you want to do something,” Tracy said. “How can you sleep at night knowing you didn’t do it right? Insurance companies have been saying their way is safe for decades, but now we have them in a trap. Science, engineering and physics have now emboldened your vehicle repair labs to stand up to these insurance bullies because you have a new friend: crash data proof.” Turning to the three Honda Fits that he crash-tested in December, Tracy noted, “I ran those crash tests because your industry needed answers. The aftermarket car experienced structural failures that the other two vehicles did not. OEMs know that aftermarket parts are unsafe.” Tracy then revealed that Ford commissioned an independent test of two frequently replaced F-150 aftermarket crash parts to determine if they would meet the automaker’s dimensional design specifications. Graphics revealed that the aftermarket parts showed a degree of deviation several millimeters

outside the Ford specification. Front bumper brackets show significant deviations from Ford specifications. Ford commented, “The results remind of the importance of repairers researching and using OEM repair procedures every time, and that even slight changes in materials or deviation from proper procedures can have bad consequences.” “We’re in the game. The OEMs are in the game. We need to get the consumers in the game,” Tracy noted. “Now you’re empowered with proof that aftermarket parts and non-OEM methods destroy safety and increase the likelihood of injury. The IIHS jumped into the fight and sided with the insurance industry, but they said the replacement parts must exactly replicate the original parts to preserve crashworthiness, and they even admitted that they don’t know how LKQ is judged. “I’m going to drain the swamp and stop insurance companies from getting involved in safety issues. The people I’ve met in your industry—they care about what they do for a living. As vehicle safety professionals, you’re heroes because you’re responsible for people’s lives.”



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ASA ‘Not-Included Operations’ Update

The Automotive Service Association (ASA) has released the latest updates to its “Not-Included Operations” charts. The resources are available for free to the industry and are designed to ensure collision repairers consider all of the possible operations when they write an estimate. These new resources, “Reference Chart of Not-Included Operations When Installing New Replacement Parts” and “Reference Chart of Not-Included Operations When Installing LKQ Parts” are available on the ASA website and serve as a quick summary of general, not-included operations. They should be used in addition to procedure pages supplied by individual information providers.“...I find that one of the best tools for me to improve the quality of my estimates are the ASA Not Included Charts for New and Recycled Parts,” said Mike Anderson, AAM, of Collision Advice. “In addition, I find the ASA Not-Included charts to be a great tool for training entry-level estimators.” Continued from Page 48

Chris Harsh

cils to create images, but quickly gravitated to paint. “I reached the point where I thought buying a set of oil paints or acrylics and a bunch of canvases might be my next move,” he said. “But then I thought, ‘Why don’t I just use the same paint I use at my job every day?’ So I started working with Sikkens Autowave, one of our waterborne products, and I loved how it worked. Then I discovered that I needed something to paint on, and for whatever reason, I started doing it on paint lids. I was around all of these paint cans, so why not put these lids to use? That’s how it began, and since then I’ve painted more than 400 images using automotive paint on paint lids.” After a while, Harsh’s art gained some local recognition, which fueled him to do even more of it, he said. “I have been a skateboarder my entire life, so one day I was at a local skate park and I ran into Steve Caballero, a pro skater,” he said. “We 64

WAC Signs Association Paperwork, Elects Officers at Recent Meeting by Chasidy Rae Sisk

During the March 13 meeting of Women in Automotive and Collision (WAC), the association signed the documents required to make the group official and elected officers. According to WAC President Shelly Jones, “The main purpose of this meeting was to elect officers, finalize the organization’s structure, discuss marketing/branding and vote on membership dues. I’m very excited to see how much trouble we can stir up on behalf of the automotive industry. And by trouble, I mean career awareness!” In addition to electing Jones as WAC’s President, members chose Jess Crump as Vice President, Peggy Vorwald as Secretary and Julie Hemann as Treasurer. Tricia Belz will fill the role of Social Media Manager, while Suzie Collum will be WAC’s Marketing Coordinator. WAC’s meeting began by thanking everyone who has supported them, talking about their rules of engagement and recapping their previous meetings. The group revised its mission statement to be

started talking and I showed him some of my work, and he liked it. He then referred me to some of his friends and they liked it too, so they invited me to display my artwork at the Ventura Nationals, an annual car show. They gave me a booth and I sold a lot of art that day, including some art I created right on the spot. It was great to see that people wanted to purchase my stuff, and that inspired me to keep going.” Since then, Harsh’s art has appeared in art shows and other events. Many people have his images on their walls, but he still wants it to be a passion as opposed to a profession, he said. “I do it for the love of it, so I don’t ever want it to be like painting those camper shells,” he said. “I want to work on it at my pace and keep it a hobby, so that I won’t lose that great feeling every time I create a new piece.”


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simpler and less limiting: “Passionate women in the automotive industry collaborating and leading members to create industry career awareness.” Jones said, “Everyone participated by sharing ideas, asking questions and electing officers. I was so

WAC members gathered on March 13 to sign official association documents, elect members and much more

impressed with the group. I absolutely love that we have dialogue and share ideas like we have known each other for years. Some of us met just that night, and others have met throughout the group’s creation. We got a lot accomplished.” After creating bylaws and setting up a bank account, WAC agreed on a membership fee and discussed branding and marketing initiatives. Jones explained, “During the meeting, we discussed having mem-

bership dues of $100/year. I didn’t know what to expect, but it was unanimous that we should have dues. Most wrote a check or paid cash on the spot. This money will give WAC the opportunity to promote industry career awareness at April events. We will get our swag, collateral, and table cloth made. Members will buy WAC shirts to promote the group. Without membership dues, we would have to wait for the execution of our fundraiser over the summer.” Two new faces joined WAC at its March 13 meeting and joined the group. Jones noted, “This group is growing. We will keep reminding people that it is never too late to join. Too many people fall into this industry vs. seeking it out as a student— including myself, my sister and a lot of women in our group! You should become one of the rock stars that are going to have fun changing that.” WAC’s next meeting will be held on April 17 at 5:30 p.m. at Gateway Motorsports. Dinner will be sponsored by ABRA.

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Continued from Page 55

Arizona Suspends Uber’s Driverless Car Tests by Mark Huffman, Consumer Affairs

Arizona Governor Doug Ducey has ordered an indefinite suspension of Uber’s public road testing of driverless cars. The decision comes in the wake of a fatal accident involving one of the cars. Uber voluntarily suspended its tests a day after the accident, but the ride-sharing company will not be able to resume its tests until Ducey lifts his suspension. A 49-year-old female pedestrian was struck and killed as she pushed her bicycle across a four-lane highway at night in Tempe, AZ. Tempe Police Chief Sylvia Moir said her initial investigation, based on the Uber car’s video, showed the woman abruptly step in front of the autonomous vehicle. A different view Apparently, Ducey had a decidedly different impression after viewing the video. In a letter to Uber, released to the media, the governor called the accident “an unquestionable failure” on the part of the technology. “In the best interests of the people of my state, I have directed the

Arizona Department of Transportation to suspend Uber’s ability to test and operate autonomous vehicles on Arizona’s public roadways,” Ducey wrote.

Credit: JasonDoiy, Getty Images

Arizona initially welcomed Uber with open arms in 2016 when the company ended road tests in California because of a disagreement over regulations. Uber issued a statement March 26 saying it hoped to work with the governor’s office to clear up any issues. Consumers aren’t asking for selfdriving cars The automotive and technology industries have collaborated to push development of self-driving cars, despite public opinion surveys that consis-

tently show consumers aren’t asking for them. In fact, many surveys suggest consumers have qualms about their safety. In February, a survey conducted by Solace found nearly 60 percent of consumers who drive “connected cars” featuring smart technology said they wouldn’t buy a self-driving car, even if money weren’t an object (these cars cost around $250,000). Consumer and highway safety groups charge autonomous vehicles are being rushed onto America’s roads without adequate testing. In June 2017, Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety issued a statement urging lawmakers to slow down. “As the proverbial way is paved for AV (autonomous vehicles), it is critical to ensure public safety and that industry not be given free rein on our roads and highways without a system of basic safeguards and oversight in place,” the group said in a statement. “Also, states should not be preempted from taking action to protect their motorists in the absence of federal oversight and regulation.” We thank Consumer Affairs for reprint permission.

Affectiva Launches Emotion Tracking AI for Connected Car Drivers by Sooraj Shah, Internet of Business

Affectiva, an MIT Media Lab startup, has launched the Automotive AI service. The service enables the manufacturers of connected vehicles and in-car systems to track drivers’ and passengers’ emotional responses. The system is designed to boost road safety. Affectiva said that its AI model offers a deep understanding of driver and occupant emotions, cognitive states and reactions to the driving experience, including joy, surprise, fear and anger. More significantly for road safety, it can also identify drowsiness, yawning and other signs of fatigue. It does this by measuring facial expressions and voice tones in real time. The system tracks heads, faces, emotions and eye movements to understand the states of mind of both drivers and passengers. Affectiva said it is working with the likes of Porsche, Daimler, BMW, robotaxi startup Renovo and vehicle safety system providers such as Autoliv, as well as hardware providers NVIDIA and Intel. This suggests that new connected cars will come 68

equipped with the AI in the near future. Affectiva’s aim is to combine its software with other onboard systems to make for a more connected drive. For example, the AI could trigger au-

Credit: JasonDoiy, Getty Images

diovisual alerts or seat belt vibrations to ensure that the driver remains engaged, or intervene in dangerous driving situations that may stem from fatigue or distractions. By sensing fatigue, anger or frustration, the AI can determine if an autonomous car should take control from its driver—and when it is safe to pass back that control. The software could also call upon a virtual assistant to guide drivers through alternative “road ragefree” routes if they seem angry, or play a soothing playlist to calm them down.


The system isn’t just focused on drivers: passengers are equally important, said Affectiva. Passenger reactions could be used to personalize music or video playlists, or adjust heating and lighting, while the autonomous driving style could be altered if passengers seem anxious or uncomfortable. Affectiva used a database of 6 million faces from 87 countries to build its AI model. The startup has also developed a voice analysis tool for the makers of AI assistants and social robots. Internet of Business says: This innovative mix of AI, incar systems, connected cars and autonomy holds great promise for the future of safer motoring for all—if these systems are designed and deployed sensitively. Too intrusive or insistent a presence in cars may trigger some of the problems that AI is designed to solve. At heart, both driving and personal transport are about people; too machine-like an experience, and many car owners or users may begin to feel that the humanity is being taken out of the picture. We thank Internet of Business for reprint permission

Tales from the 30’s

refinishers with its Duco brand, followed by Dulux alkyd resin enamel and Lucite Acrylic lacquer. In early 1935, a positive public relations campaign was launched. One of the main initiatives was an entertainment program developed and sponsored by DuPont called Cavalcade of America. It started as a radio show and eventually went to television in 1952, lasting until 1957. The show advertised DuPont non-explosive, consumer-oriented products and made a point to promote ingenuity and patriotism. Out of this PR campaign came the now-familiar motto, “Better Things for Better Living—Through Chemistry.” But despite all the positive messages and slogans, perhaps nothing did more to rejuvenate DuPont’s image than the development of nylon hosiery for women.

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Continued from Cover

State Farm Responds

body repair specifications due to State Farm’s instructions, threats and/or coercion.” State Farm attorneys have responded to the allegations, denying the insurer had any influence over the repair. “To the extent alleged, Defendant denies that it coerced or enticed any body shop to not follow vehicle manufacturer’s procedures, cut corners, take safety shortcuts, or do anything that jeopardizes members of the motoring public,” the response reads. “Defendant denies that it forced John Eagle to use deadly, dangerous, unproven, and untested adhesive rather than welds. Defendant also denies that it forced John Eagle to do anything in violation of OEM requirements.” State Farm is motioned to have the lawsuits dismissed, claiming the defense of unconstitutionality. A scheduling order for the case has yet to be filed. We thank for reprint permission.

Continued from Page 30

ASA Endorsement of OEM Service Procedures

In January 2018, Indiana Sen. Mark Messmer, R-48, introduced Senate Bill (SB) 164 which unanimously passed the Senate Jan. 30 and moved quickly through the House Committee on Insurance. It returned to the Senate with amendments by a vote of 83–13 Feb. 28. The Senate balked and filed a motion to dissent in early March .An amendment, adopted by the House Insurance Committee, would allow a work-around for insurers by recommending adherence to “industry standards” as an alternative to the vehicle manufacturer’s repair procedures. The CDOC of the Automotive Service Association has reaffirmed ASA’s position endorsing the use of required OEM service procedures when such procedures are available. COC members recently discussed several legislative initiatives being monitored. Language in one such initiative in Indiana would have endorsed the use of vaguely defined “industry standards” over the recommended OEM service procedures in the course of collision repair.


repair industry in general and the collision industry in particular. What do you see for the future of OE certification programs?


We see this as a growth area. Customers like the confidence of having their car repaired at a certified shop. And dealers know they can run a better operation as a certified shop. There is still plenty of profit in collision repair and we want our dealers to understand that.



AUTOBODY Continued from Page 56

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they’ve been damaged to the point that that’s no longer possible. Montanez stressed, “Keep in mind there’s only one way to repair a vehicle. ‘Recommended by manufacturer’ means you have to do it their way because they’ve invested to ensure their way means safety. The insurance company has no say in the matter, and no one cares about your opinion either.” “Vehicles are designed to be safe, and as professional repairers, that’s your fundamental task,” Eversman said. Eversman discouraged attendees from taking a hold harmless or indemnification agreement, explaining that they allow a shop to sue the assignee if the shop is sued. “It basically means, ‘I know this is the wrong way to repair the vehicle, but I’ll do it anyway if you indemnify,’” she said. Montanez agreed. “Never take a hold harmless,” he said. “It’s an issue in court because

FedEx Orders 20 Tesla Semi Electric Trucks

FedEx Corp. recently announced it has placed a reservation for 20 Tesla Semi trucks. The fully electric trucks, which are scheduled to begin production in 2019, will be operated by FedEx Freight, its less-than-truckload unit. “FedEx has a long history of innovation and incorporating sustainability efforts throughout its global network,” said FedEx Freight President and CEO Mike Ducker. “Our investment in these trucks is part of our commitment to improving road safety while also reducing our environmental impact.” Tesla said its new big rig will deliver a far better experience for truck drivers while increasing safety and significantly reducing the cost of cargo transport. Its advanced technologies, such as surround cameras and onboard sensors, help aid object detection while also enabling Enhanced Autopilot for automatic emergency braking, automatic lane keeping and lane departure warning. The company also touts electric energy cost savings that are half that of diesel.

you’re the professional and should have done it right.” “If it’s a safety issue, there’s no question that you shouldn’t do it, but in cosmetic cases, such as painting with a bad color, you could possibly use a hold harmless,” Eversman added. “However, both the customer and the insurance company have to sign the hold harmless, and the insurer will almost never agree to that.” Eversman and Montanez returned to the topic of total losses, pointing out that the customer could be prevented from transferring ownership until the shop is paid in full due to the signed authorization to repair. Therefore, if the insurance company tries to avoid paying for the repairs performed before deeming the vehicle a total loss, the consumer needs to file a complaint with the DOI. Eversman and Montanez answered a few questions from the audience as their time concluded.


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