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SO U THEASTEDITION

AUTOBODY AL / FL / GA / MS / NC / SC / TN / VA / WV

AL Senator Jones’ Legislation Would Delay Auto Tariffs by Adam Powell, Selma Times-Journal

U.S. Sen. Doug Jones, D-AL, along with Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-TN, reintroduced the Automotive Jobs Act Jan. 15, which would delay the 25 percent tariff on imported vehicles and auto parts proposed by President Donald Trump, according to a press release from Jones’ office. In May of 2018, Trump directed the U.S. Department of Commerce to investigate if imported automobiles and parts pose a national security threat to the United States and, subsequently, to levy tariffs. The investigation is slated to be complete in February, when a recommendation

will be presented to the president. The bipartisan legislation proposed by Jones would require the International Trade Commission (ITC) to conduct a study on the “well-being, health and vitality” of the nation’s automotive industry before tariffs could be implemented. “Automobile tariffs are nothing but new taxes on American consumers and only serve to threaten an industry that is vital to Alabama’s economy and supports 57,000 good jobs,” Jones said in the press release, noting that he recently met with representatives from Alabama’s four major automakers. “As the son of a steelworker, I know See AL Senator Jones’, Page 6

2,200 Attendees Hit the City by the Bay for 2019 NADA Show by Ed Attanasio

This year, more than 2,200 industry professionals attended the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) Show from Jan. 24–27 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, CA. U.S. and international new car dealers, commercial truck dealers, automaker executives and allied industry professionals from 37 countries converged in the City by the Bay for four days of work and fun. At the start of the show, NADA forecasted sales of 16.8 million new

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AUTOBODYNEWS.COM Vol. 10 / Issue 1 / March 2019

9 Indicted for Racketeering, 1 for Theft After Dealership, Collision Center Break-Ins in GA by Amanda LaBrot, WTOC 11

A Chatham County, GA, grand jury indicted nine people accused of violating the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act and one person accused of theft by receiving stolen property after 41 cars were stolen from eight Savannah, GA, dealerships and collision centers in 2017. “Starting in December 2017, the gang unit began an investigation into several auto thefts and car dealership burglaries, and through a year-long investigation in collaboration with the DA’s office, we were able to bring forth an indictment last week,” said Savannah Police Sgt. Jonathan Puhala. “It was 71 counts involving nine defendants.” Jarquail Dixon, Saviaya Robinson, Nayquan McFarlin, Brandon

Jenkins, Ricardo Ferguson, Kaiwan Grant, James Hill, Lonzell Chisholm and Jamie Ellis are accused of violating the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act. Each faces additional charges ranging from burglary, entering auto, financial transaction card fraud and theft by taking. “These defendants worked together to further their criminal enterprise of stealing cars and breaking into cars,” Sgt. Puhala said. “They weren’t necessarily gang members, but at the beginning of the investigation, we didn’t know that. We went where the investigation led us, and that led us to a RICO indictment.” A tenth person, Larry Young, isn’t included in the RICO charge, but is accused in the indictment of See 9 Indicted, Page 12

New ASA Executive Director Ray Fisher Shares His Goals for the Industry by Chasidy Rae Sisk

UpdatePromise was on hand in full force to unveil new products and meet with current clients. (l to r) Owner/CEO Curtis Nixon, merchant services manager Krista Lucchino, product specialist Bridgette Amador, product specialist Taylor Su, marketing manager Jennifer Marmolejo and sales rep Adam Guizado See 2019 NADA Show, Page 26

Recently appointed Automotive Service Association (ASA) Executive Director Ray Fisher held a press conference on Thursday, Jan. 10 to provide some information on his plans and goals as he transitions into his new leadership responsibilities. “I’m excited to bring my background into this role, and I’m very grateful for the opportunity,” Fisher stated. “We definitely want to engage our membership more. We want to listen to our members and provide venues for quicker availability. All facets of the industry across the globe are caught in different demographics and attempting to reach their constituents. We plan to utilize different mediums and platforms to reach ASA’s membership. My main goal is to represent my customer; our memberships are

our customers, and it’s important that we represent them well.” Fisher emphasized the association’s focus on its mission statement: to enhance the professionalism of the industry.

“I believe our industry is made up of a bunch of professionals, and ASA represents that professional group,” he said. “That was our foundation in 1951 and continues to be today. We plan to take that into 2019 and listen to our membership, enhancing our interactions and commuSee ASA Executive Director, Page 22

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MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com


CONTENTS

Aftermarket Crash Parts Legislation On Fast Track in WY Legislature

REGIONAL

NATIONAL

9 Indicted for Racketeering, 1 for Theft After

2,200 Attendees Hit the City by the Bay

Dealership, Collision Center Break-Ins in GA . . 1

for 2019 NADA Show . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

AAAS Kicks Off 2019 Capitol Days . . . . . . . . . . 6

Accountable Estimating Joins CIECA . . . . . . . . 26

AL Senator Jones’ Legislation Would Delay

Aftermarket Crash Parts Legislation On

Alabama Auto Plants Brace for Tariffs . . . . . . . 20 GICCA Hosts Regional SkillsUSA Competition in Brunswick, GA. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 Morgan County Auto Body Program Gets State Recognition in AL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 SCACAR Hosts Its 1st Meeting of 2019 in Greeneville, SC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 WIN Opens Registration for 2019 WIN Educational Conference in FL . . . . . . . . . . . 10

Fast Track in WY Legislature . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 APU Solutions Renews Commitment to CIECA Standards . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 67 ASA Northwest’s 2019 ATE Gearing Up To Be Another Successful Event. . . . . . . . . . . . 28

Anderson - It’s Time to End Shops’ Accounting,

BirdEye Joins CIECA as Corporate Member . . . 60 Caliber Collision, ABRA Auto Body Repair of America Announce the Closing of

Car Accident Total Loss Lawsuits Allege Insurance Company Violations. . . . . . . . . . . 70

Scorecard Nightmares by Creating New

CARSTAR Celebrates 30 Years of Business . . . 35

Parts Code . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34

CARSTAR Expands Dealership-Based

Attanasio - Fledgling Auto Body Technician is Well-Known, Dedicated Bagpiper. . . . . . . 48 Attanasio - Team-Building Events Make Your Business Better on Many Levels . . . . . 62 Ledoux - Denver Body Shop Manager Discusses Position Statement on OEM Repair Procedures . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56 Ledoux - Does the Collision Industry Have a Crisis of Opportunity?. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52 Ledoux - The 1960s – The Collision Repair Industry Gets a Voice. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 New ASA Executive Director Ray Fisher Shares His Goals for the Industry . . . . . . . . . 1 Phillips - Celebrity Car Enthusiast Courtney Hansen Helps Reunite Car Lovers With ‘The Ride That Got Away’ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 Phillips - Solving the Tech Shortage: AR Collision Repair Instructor Calls Out to Industry: ‘Please Employ My Students’ . . . . . . . . . . . 50 Sisk - ASA Presents ‘The Even Better I-CAR’ Webinar . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38 Sisk - Women in Auto and Collision Holds 1st Meeting of 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60 Yoswick - Committee Seeks to Build Industry Consensus Around Part-Type Definitions . . . 30

See Parts Legislation, Page 6

to Build Competitive Websites . . . . . . . . . . . 59

Merger Transaction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 COLUMNISTS

dards for the use of aftermarket parts in automobile damage repairs; requiring disclosure when any use is proposed of a non-original manufacturer part; requiring that all aftermarket parts be identified and be of the same quality as the original part; and providing for an effective date. The bill was introduced Jan. 15 and, in a very brief period of time, is on its way to potentially becoming state law. This legislation has been attempted in other states and numerous legislatures have rejected

ASA Partners With Kukui to Enable Shops

Facilities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66 Deaths From Exploding Airbags, Shrapnel Force 2.7 Million More Car Recalls . . . . . . . 64 Enterprise Holdings Foundation Contributes $75,000 to CREF. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 67 Fantastic Finishes Gifts Dodge Caravan to Hometown Foundation for Dream Rider in FL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 GEICO Wins Appeal in Case Filed by Miracle Body & Paint Over Labor Rates in TX . . . . . . 46 Is Trump About To Clobber the Auto Industry?. . 68 Join CIECA for Webinar on March 19 . . . . . . . . 12 New Training Model Helps Autonomous Cars See AI’s Blind Spots . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Self-Driving Vehicles To Make Traffic Even More Miserable, Says New Study . . . . . . . . . 4 Symach To Sponsor IBIS USA 2019 . . . . . . . . . 70 Toyota Works With Carma Project to Encourage Drivers to Check Vehicle Recall Status. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66 Volvo Releases Statement for Repair Shops . . 46 Waymo To Build Self-Driving Car Factory in Michigan. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59 WIN Calls for Board of Director Candidates . . . 66 Winter Weather Keeps MN Body Shops Busy. . 60

INDEX OF ADVERTISERS

Auto Tariffs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

The Wyoming legislature is considering legislation that would negatively impact collision repairers and consumers relative to aftermarket crash parts. The legislation, SF0095, has passed the Wyoming state senate and is now being reviewed by the Wyoming House of Representatives. The bill is sponsored by state Sen. Tara Nethercott. The Senate summarizes the legislation as follows: AN ACT relating to insurance; providing stan-

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: Vicki Sitarz Online and Web Content Editor: Rochelle Beckel Accounting Manager: Heather Priddy Editorial/Sales Assistant: Randi Scholtes

Serving Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Virginia, West Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina 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. ©2019 Adamantine Media LLC.

Accuvision-3D . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 AzkoNobel Coatings Inc . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29 Alloy Wheel Repair Specialists, LLC. . . . . . 25 Audi Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . . . 63 AutobodyLaw.com . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Axalta Coating Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5,8 Benchmark Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep-Ram. . . 21 Blowtherm USA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 BMW Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . . 54 Braman Honda Miami . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 Braman Honda of Palm Beach. . . . . . . . . . 17 Braman Miami . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 72 Car-O-Liner . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Certified Automotive Parts Association . . . 38 Classifieds . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 70 Coggin Deland Honda . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Chevrolet . . . . . . . . . . . 46 Daytona Dodge-Chrysler. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 Dent Fix Equipment. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47 Dent Magic Tools . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Diamond Standard Parts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41 Eckler’s Automotive . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55 ECS Automotive Concepts . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 Equalizer Industries, Inc . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 Ford Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . . . 62 GM Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . . . . 65 Gus Machado Ford . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59 GYS Welding USA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Hendrick Automotive Group. . . . . . . . . . . . 57 Hendrick BMW/MINI . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58 Hendrick Honda Pompano Beach . . . . . . . 44 Hendrick Kia Cary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 Hendrick Kia Concord . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 Honda-Acura Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31, 32-33 Hyundai Motor America . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53

Hyundai Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . 64 Jim Cogdill Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep-Ram . . . 22 Jon Hiester Automotive . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59 Kernersville Lexus-CDJR-GM . . . . . . . . . . 51 Kia Motors Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . 69 Killer Tools & Equipment Corp . . . . . . . . . . 34 Launch Tech USA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 71 Lexus Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . . 66 Malco . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 Matrix Automotive Finishes . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Matrix Electronic Measuring . . . . . . . . . . . 27 Mercedes-Benz . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11, 36-37 Mercedes-Benz Wholesale Parts Dealers. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 68 MINI Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . . . 54 MOPAR Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . 45 O’Reilly Auto Parts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39 Porsche Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . 68 PPG Refinish. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Radley Chevrolet. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 RBL Products . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49 Rick Hendrick Chevrolet Naples . . . . . . . . 52 Rick Hendrick MOPAR Southeast Wholesalers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18-19 Riverside Ford-Lincoln . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56 SATA Dan-Am Company . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 Smith Kia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61 Southside Kia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43 Spanesi Americas . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 Spartanburg Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram. . . 15 Subaru Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . 67 Symach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Tameron Hyundai . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 Volkswagen Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . 66 West Broad Hyundai . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 YesterWreck . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10

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Self-Driving Vehicles To Make Traffic Even More Miserable, Says New Study by Taylor Donovan Barnett, Interesting Engineering

Whether you like it or not, self-driving cars will be hitting the road in fullforce in the coming years. Thanks to new technology developed by companies such as Tesla and even Uber, autonomous vehicles will become a staple of modern culture, with nearly 10 million self-driving cars expected to hit the road by 2020. Yet, not all is well across the autonomous landscape. Like any new

Credit: Waymo

technology, there have literally been speed bumps in the world of self-driving cars. From accidents to malfunctioning AI, self-driving vehicles are still very much in their infancy.

However, new research in the world of autonomous vehicles has uncovered another potential issue down the line: parking. Anyone living in a metropolitan area will tell you that parking is always a long-winded adventure. According to a new study, autonomous vehicles could create a problematic parking issue. Parking in 2020 and Beyond Imagine a scenario: You and your family are dropped off by your electric car in the center of the city. However, like most already know, parking in the city is expensive, so rather than park, your vehicle cruises around the city until you’re done. Though this may sound like a sweet set-up and a potential perk of owning an autonomous vehicle, this could be detrimental to transportation in the near future. “Parking prices are what get people out of their cars and on to public transit, but autonomous vehicles have no need to park at all. They can get around paying for parking by cruising. They will have every incen-

tive to create havoc,” said Adam Millard-Ball, an associate professor of environmental studies at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Robotfilled gridlock is a real potential issue if something is not done. The Autonomous Vehicle Parking Problem Professor Millard breaks down his concerns further in his published paper

and congestion pricing may ease the transition into the driverless world. Self-driving owners might be charged just a flat fee upon entering a city, or more sophisticated models could charge by miles driven or assign different fees to particular streets. Though Millard’s proposed idea does tackle the issue at large, there are other potential solutions to the gridlock issue. The emergence of the smart city

“...autonomous vehicles have no need to park at all. They can get around paying for parking by cruising. They will have every incentive to create havoc,” — Adam Millard-Ball “The Autonomous Vehicle Problem.” In his paper, he estimates that just the presence of the relatively small amount of 2,000 self-driving vehicles in the San Francisco area will slow traffic to less than 2 miles per hour. Considering where the autonomous vehicle market is headed, imagine what would happen if tens of thousands of vehicles were to hit the road. What’s Millard’s solution? Regulation

could be equally important to the rise of self-driving cars. In a smart city, cars could be monitored and controlled, optimizing traffic pattern via an IoT ecosystem. Properly addressing the challenges of this inevitable automotive change will lay the framework of how this technology will evolve. We thank Interesting Engineering for reprint permission.

New Training Model Helps Autonomous Cars See AI’s Blind Spots by John Loeffler, Interesting Engineering

Since their introduction several years ago, autonomous vehicles have slowly been making their way onto the road in greater and greater numbers. However, the public remains wary of them despite the undeniable safety advantages they offer the public. Autonomous vehicle companies are fully aware of the public’s skepticism. Every crash makes it more difficult to gain public trust. The fear is that if companies do not manage the autonomous vehicle roll-out properly, the backlash might close the door on self-driving car technology the way the Three Mile Island accident shut down the growth of nuclear power plants in the United States in the 1970s. Making autonomous vehicles safer than they already are means identifying those cases that programmers might never have thought of and to which the AI will fail to respond appropriately but that a human driver will understand intuitively as a potentially dangerous situation. 4

New research from a joint effort by MIT and Microsoft may help bridge this gap between machine learning and human intuition to produce the safest autonomous vehicles yet. Reassuring a Wary Public Were public hesitancy not a factor, every car on the road would be re-

Credit: Tesla

placed with an autonomous vehicle within a couple of years. Every truck would be fully autonomous by now and there would be no Uber or Lyft drivers, only shuttle cabs that you would order by phone. They would pull up smoothly to the curb in a cou-

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

ple of minutes without a driver in sight. Accidents would happen and people would still die as a result, but by some estimates, 90 percent of traffic fatalities around the world could be prevented with autonomous vehicles. Autonomous cars may need to recharge, but they don’t need to sleep or take breaks, and they are singlemindedly concerned with carrying out the instructions in their programming. For companies that rely on transportation to move goods and people from point A to point B, replacing drivers with self-driving cars saves on labor, insurance and other ancillary costs that come with having a large human workforce. The cost savings and the safety gains are simply too great to keep humans on the road behind the wheel. We fall asleep; we drive drunk; we get distracted; sometimes we are simply bad at driving, and the consequences are both costly and deadly.

A little more than a million people die every year on the roads around the world, and the move to autonomous commercial trucking alone could cut transportation costs for some companies in half. Yet, the public is not convinced, and they become more skeptical with each report of an accident involving a self-driving car. Edge Cases: The Achilles Heel of SelfDriving Cars? Whether it is fair or not, the burden of demonstrating autonomous vehicle safety is on those advocating for selfdriving vehicle technology. In order to do this, companies must work to identify and address those edge cases that can cause high-profile accidents that reduce public confidence in the otherwise safe technology. What happens when a vehicle is driving down the road and it spots a weather-beaten, bent, misshapen, faded stop sign? Though an obviously rare situation—transportation departments would have likely reSee New Training Model, Page 16


autobodynews.com / MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS

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AAAS Kicks Off 2019 Capitol Days by Chasidy Rae Sisk

The Automotive Aftermarket Association Southeast (AAAS) kicked off its annual Capitol Day visits on Jan. 30 with Georgia Capitol Day. A group of association members and staff traveled to Atlanta, GA, to meet with members of the Georgia General Assembly to discuss the aftermarket industry and its challenges. Throughout the years that AAAS members have made these visits, they have established relationships with their state legislators. Matt Ward, director of government relations, said, “We must continue to tell our story both at the state and federal level to help ensure the aftermarket remains healthy and viable into the future. We want our legislators to know they have a resource for information when legislation comes along that could positively or negatively impact the aftermarket.” Attendees focused their conversations with legislators on some of the challenges they face, including the impact of tariffs on the automotive sector, technological changes to the industry through telematics and embedded software, and the indus-

Continued from Cover

AL Senator Jones’ well that there is a need to address the bad actors like China who’ve taken advantage of us on trade, and I share the president’s goal of reviving our domestic manufacturing industry. However, that should be done in a way that doesn’t hurt other major job-creating industries and increase costs for American consumers. By having a deeper look at the state of the auto industry, an ITC study would shed light on the impacts that tariffs would have and would make it undeniably clear to the president that this industry is not a national security threat.” The legislation would require, among other things, that the ITC assess the number of automobiles assembled in the U.S. and exported to other countries annually; the percentage of component parts of automobiles assembled in the U.S. that are imported; the number of component parts for automobiles not produced in the U.S. that would, if not imported, be unavailable to the U.S.; and the effect an increase in automotive manufacturing would have on U.S. jobs. The issue of auto tariffs was first raised by Jones and Alexander in a letter sent to U.S. Department of Com6

Continued from Page 3

and explain the value we bring to the economy is a great service to our industry.” While the 2019 Georgia Capitol Day was a major success, AAAS is just getting started. The 2019 Mississippi Capitol Day will take place on Feb. 13; the Florida Capitol Day will take place from March 26–27; and the AL Capitol Day will take place in Montgomery on April 17. Ward added, “AAAS seeks to preserve an open and competitive market for businesses in the aftermarket, and these annual CapiPictured L to R: Rudy Rosenmayer (LKQ), Matt Ward tol Day events are an (AAAS), Representative Jeff Jones (R-Brunswick), Bobby important part of achieving Brannon (PSKB, Inc.), Keith West (Auto Supply Company), that goal. Please consider Jacob Smith (LKQ) joining your colleagues in sents more than 80,000 jobs in Geor- their efforts to promote the aftermargia and more than 4.6 million in the ket by attending Capitol Day in your state! These events would not be sucUnited States. One of the event’s attendees, cessful without member participation, Bobby Brannon of PSKB, Inc. and AAAS is thankful to those who stated, “I really enjoyed visiting with have participated this year and in past my representatives and am apprecia- years.” tive of the opportunity to participate in this year’s Capitol Day event. For more information about AAAS Having the chance to tell our story and its events, visit aaas.us. try’s skilled labor shortage. They also emphasized the importance of the industry’s role in Georgia’s economy as well as the country’s, noting that the aftermarket industry repre-

merce Secretary Wilbur Ross in June 2018. “Auto manufacturers and suppliers employ nearly 200,000 of our constituents, and that number is growing,” the letter stated. “These are good jobs employing American workers. “However, as a result of the Department’s investigation, automotive companies are currently facing the threat of direct and retaliatory tariffs, which could mean hundreds of millions of dollars of additional costs. To absorb these costs, automotive companies in our state could be forced to either raise prices or cut costs. Either scenario directly translates into lost jobs for our constituents.” Under the legislation proposed by Jones and Alexander, the ITC would be required to present its report to Congress and make policy recommendations based on the study—tariffs could not be applied until the final report is delivered. We thank Selma Times-Journal for reprint permission

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MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

Parts Legislation this policy, as it dramatically changes the consumer-collision shop marketplace. ASA opposes SF0095. There are numerous questions that SF0095 raises, including: • Who is to determine that parts meet OEM standards? • What state agency is equipped to evaluate certification standards? • How does this protect the consumer? Any discussion about automotive crash parts invokes an examination of quality issues. More importantly, what has been the policy dialogue about vehicle safety as impacted by SF0095? These are important issues that should require more than two weeks of policy debate. ASA encourages Wyoming collision repairers to contact their state legislators and ask that they oppose Aftermarket Parts Bill SF0095.

www.autobodynews.com


autobodynews.com / MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS

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Regional Association Event Announcements: March 2019 by Chasidy Rae Sisk

See below for a list of regional automotive association events coming up in March: IACA To Host Meetings With Collision Safety Consultants & Mike Anderson On March 8, the Idaho Autobody Craftsman Association (IACA) will host an educational seminar with Billy Walkowiak of Collision Safety Consultants at the Oxford Suites in Boise, ID, from 6 p.m.–9 p.m. Topics during this presentation will include: • The importance of following OEM repair procedures to avoid liability • Quality control via post-repair inspections • Why corrosion protection is so important • Diminished value The cost to attend is $50 per person, which includes appetizers and drinks. This fee is included in the cost for attendees registered for the next day’s seminar.

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On March 9, IACA will host “A Day with Mike Anderson and Friends” from 8 a.m.–4 p.m. at the Oxford Suites in Boise, ID. Several presentations will be delivered during this event, including “Positioning Yourself in the Collision Repair Industry,” “Body Shop Booster”, and “PODIUM – Customers Demand Convenience and Trust.” The day will also include a special appearance by Scott Saal of Auto Data Labels and possibly others. The cost to attend this full-day event is $50 for IACA members or $100 for non-members. The fee includes the seminar as well as a continental breakfast and lunch. For more information about IACA and its events, visit idahocraftsman.org or call (208) 344-3582. AASP-MO Gateway Collision Chapter Meeting To Focus on How to Benefit Most From I-CAR’s Website On March 13, the Gateway Collision Chapter of AASP-MO will hold a meeting to introduce members to ICAR’s new website. Robbie Sal-

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

adino, south central business development manager for I-CAR, will teach attendees about what is available to them on the website and how to benefit most from its use. The meeting will be sponsored by Enterprise Rent-A-Car. For more information about AASP-MO, visit aasp-mo.org.

• The Whatcom/Skagit chapter will meet on March 12 at Park Bowl Restaurant in Bellingham, WA. • The North Sno-King meeting will be held on March 14 at Alfy’s Pizza in Everett, WA • The South Sno-King chapter will meet on March 21 at Renton Technical College in Renton, WA.

ASA To Host 2019 Legislative Update Webinar On March 20, ASA will host a webinar featuring an update on the 2019 legislative sessions with Robert L. Redding Jr., legislative representative for ASA’s Washington, D.C. office. Attendees will also learn about legislation that will impact shop owners. To register, visit bit.ly/ASAWebinarWedmar19

The SW Washington chapter meeting will be held on March 25 at South Puget Sound Community College in Olympia, WA. For more information on ASA Northwest, visit asanorthwest.com.

ASA Northwest To Host March Chapter Meetings • On March 7, the Pierce County chapter of ASA Northwest will host a meeting at the LaQuinta in Tacoma, WA.

ASA-AZ To Host March Meetings ASA-AZ will host a Tucson Automotive Roundtable on March 5 at El Corral Restaurant in Tucson, AZ. The board of directors will meet on March 14 via GoTo Meeting. For more information on ASAAZ, visit asaaz.org. AAAS To Host March Events The Automotive Aftermarket Association Southeast (AAAS) will host


its annual Florida Capitol Days from March 26–27 in Tallahassee, FL. Additionally, the association’s Educational Foundation is accepting scholarship applications through March 31. For more information on AAAS, visit aaas.us. DRIVE Expo Scheduled for March 22−24 From March 22—24, DRIVE (aka Management Success) will host its semi-annual shop owner’s expo at the Savannah Riverfront Marriott in Savannah, GA. Offering innovative training and management solutions with state-of-the-art technology, the DRIVE Expo promises a unique learning experience for shop owners. DRIVE CEO Bill Kilpatrick noted, “We seek to improve not only every independent repair business, but the community and the industry as a whole. “The DRIVE Expo provides opportunities to network with likeminded shop owners and industry influencers. Workshops provide a valuable and unique leadership expe-

rience and an opportunity to work with other shops. By implementing cutting-edge software and technical resources, DRIVE embraces the necessity of strong automation.” Friday will kick off a weekend of training with a highly anticipated general session, followed by breakout training specific to each segment—general repair, collision and heavy-duty truck. The EXPO hall will be open on Friday from noon–6 p.m., and the evening will conclude with an awards banquet. Saturday from 8 a.m.–5 p.m. will offer a variety of management topics with expert guest speakers from companies such as Meritor, asTech and SCRS, to name a few. The expo hall will be open from 10:30 a.m.–6 p.m. Attendees will participate in theme night activities on Saturday night. Sunday will offer a high-energy, interactive workshop that will equip attendees with actionable takeaways on team-building and communication skills. DRIVE is running a limited-time offer in which shop owners can receive this weekend of training for FREE. For more information, call

818.500.9631 or visit drive-expo.com. Greater Midwest Automotive Recycler Expo To Be Held in Lincoln, NE The Greater Midwest Automotive Recycler Expo will be held from March 29—30 at the Graduate Hotel in Lincoln, NE. For more information, visit ari-ne.org. Colorado Automotive Recyclers To Sponsor Rocky Mountain Summit & Expo On March 15 and 16, the Colorado Automotive Recyclers (CAR) will sponsor the Rocky Mountain Summit and Expo held at Cheyenne Mountain Colorado Springs. CAR welcomes recyclers from Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, Utah and Idaho to gather for an informative program with speakers covering topics including regulatory compliance, increasing sales, running a self-service yard and more. The expo portion of the event will include top industry vendors that will demonstrate their newest technology and help attendees discover new uses for existing products.

Friday’s offerings include Pinnacle training, a Car-Part World Tour and Hollander Training Summit. The evening will feature an Exhibitor Appreciation Reception. On Saturday morning, Richard Murr will welcome attendees with a presentation on “Increasing Your Sales and Presence on eBay,” delivered by eBay’s Garff Fitzgerald. Next, Theresa Colbert will facilitate a Recyclers Hot Topic Roundtable. After a short break, there will be a presentation by the Department of Labor and Department of Revenue preceding Scott Vollero of ScrapCATapp.com’s presentation titled “A Practical Approach to Leading Change in Your Organization.” Following lunch on Saturday when the expo will be open, the educational offerings will be broken into three categories: Management, Employee and Self-Serve. The Management session will include: • “How to Monitor the Value of My Operations” presented by George Metos of GM Consulting See Association Event, Page 24

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Fantastic Finishes Gifts Dodge Caravan to Hometown Foundation for Dream Rider in FL [who were] in need of reliable transportation to accommodate Sebastian On Jan. 19, Russ Swift of Fantastic and his wheelchair.” “Sebastian was diagnosed with a Finishes, a luxury collision repair center, partnered with Sheriff Ric Brad- rare form of epilepsy at 8 years old. Up shaw of the Palm Beach County, FL, until age 8, he was a normal, happy, energetic young boy. Each year that passed, he lost more control of his body, yet his mind stays intact,” Swift explained. “When you meet the Castano family, they are so loving and kind; you would never know the burden they carry on their shoulders.” After Russ and Joann Swift heard that the Castano family’s van frequently Russ Swift of Fantastic Finishes partnered with Sheriff broke down, it weighed Ric Bradshaw of the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s heavy on them to find a way Office to refurbish and gift a 2018 Dodge Caravan to to help the family. Swift obThe Hometown Foundation for one of its Dream Riders, tained the 2018 Dodge CarSebastian Castano avan in the fall and spent Sheriff’s Office to refurbish and gift a several months giving it a complete 2018 Dodge Caravan to The Home- makeover for the Jan. 19th unveiling. “We are so excited to see the look town Foundation for Sebastian Castano, one of the organization’s Dream on Sebastian’s face as Dream Ride friends and family and VIP guests surRiders. Swift called the donation “a de- round him when he’s presented with cision made purely from our hearts to this life-changing gift,” Swift shared. The celebration included appehelp a young man and his parents,

by Chasidy Rae Sisk

WIN Opens Registration for 2019 WIN Educational Conference in FL The Women’s Industry Network (WIN®) is pleased to announce that registration for the 2019 Educational Conference is now open.

Members registering before March 13 will receive a discounted rate of $300. Member registration on or after March 13 is $475. Non-members may attend at a rate of $650. Attendance at the Most Influential Women and Scholarship Winners Gala only is $80 per person. As previously announced, this year’s conference will be held May 6–8 in Fort Lauderdale, FL. “Navigating Tomorrow Together,” the conference theme, will be reflected throughout the agenda with presentations focused on navigat10

ing through ever-changing professional and personal landscapes. WIN is thrilled to announce that executive coach and author Connie Dieken will present this year’s keynote address. “We are fortunate to have Connie presenting for our entire Tuesday morning session,” stated Wendy Rogers, one of the 2019 conference cochairs. “Her recognition as a leading executive coach is unsurpassed, and her presentation and workshop are being tailored specifically for our attendees.” To register for the conference and view the agenda, please visit https://thewomensindustrynetwork.site-ym.com/event/2019WINConference. For more information on WIN, please, visit the WIN website at www.womensindustrynetwork .com.

www.autobodynews.com

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

tizers from Carmines Palm Beach Cars and Cocktails, The Hometown Gardens, entertainment by Lovelock Foundation has raised more than $7.7 million for Special Music Group, an exotic Olympics and other charcar show and a live artist. ities. The Hometown FounSwift noted, “These indation, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) credible acts of kindness charitable foundation are what Dream Ride is founded in 2002 that supall about when it comes ports six core community to helping those in need. needs: military, children in Amazing things happen need, intellectual disabiliwhen organizations such ties, life-threatening illas Dream Ride come toness, emergency response personnel and animal wel- Sebastian Castano was gether with the community. fare. Through its signature excited to receive the “It was a big surprise events, The Dream Ride gifted Dodge Caravan to the family because they Experience and Dream had no idea what this was about. [This family] is a family that basically has not much to be thankful for but is thankful for everything, and those people are very few and far between. We do the best for our community and the best for our friends and family. You make a living by what you make. You make a life out of what you give.” Fantastic Finishes obtained the 2018 Dodge Caravan in the fall and spent several months giving it a complete makeover for the Jan. 19th unveiling.”

For more information about Dream Ride, visit dreamride.org. For more information about Fantastic Finishes, visit ffpalmbeach.com.


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SCACAR Hosts Its 1st Meeting of 2019 in Greeneville, SC by Chasidy Rae Sisk

On Jan. 10, the South Carolina Association of Collision and Autobody Repair (SCACAR) hosted its first meeting of 2019 at the McKinney Automotive Center in Greeneville, SC.

The meeting featured a presentation by Mike Choma of Mitchell and a discussion on supplemental restraint systems with Keith Glasgow of GM. According to Josh Kent, SCACAR director of membership, “We had about 35 people at our meeting in upstate South Carolina. This meeting was our third meeting since we began, and it was great to see some new faces, whether it was a vendor or a new shop. As long as the people who come take some new information home with them, then we have succeeded.” After Kent welcomed attendees to

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9 Indicted theft by receiving a stolen 2017 Infiniti SUV taken from Chatham Parkway Toyota. Christa Rader is one of the theft victims. She dropped off her SUV to Chatham Parkway Collision Center for a repair at the end of the summer in 2017. When she called to check if it was ready to be picked up, she heard something she had never expected. “‘We have some good news and some bad news. Your car got fixed, but it was stolen,’” Rader recalled of her phone call with someone at the collision center. “So I thought he was teasing, and then when he told me that he wasn’t, I was like, ‘Goodness, I’ve only had that car since February; now what do I do?’” It turns out Rader wasn’t the only person who had a car stolen, and that wasn’t the only dealership that had this problem. The indictment lists burglaries at Fairway Lincoln Mazda, Chatham Parkway Collision Center, Gerber Collision, Savannah Hyundai, Kia 12

plained] its capabilities, and he also spoke about the new GM certification program.” Glasgow then presented “Supplement Restraint: Service and Repair.” Kent concluded, “Our main purpose is to help bring shops together so they can make new friends and have someone to call on when they run into something they cannot figure out or just want to ask an opinion on something. I would like to see us get some new members, as we need to increase our numbers. We just want everyone to understand that we are NOT anti-DRP or anti-insurance company. We just want to help educate shops on the new trends [and] better business practices to help them succeed and help to make sure they On Jan. 10, the South Carolina Association of Collision are fixing vehicles safely. and Autobody Repair (SCACAR) hosted its first meeting The collision industry goal of 2019 at the McKinney Automotive Center in is to repair vehicles to preGreeneville, SC existing condition and make Kent recalled, “[Choma] briefly them safe.” showed the new Mitchell Estimating software and answered questions. For more information on SCACAR, He then showed its scanner and [ex- visit scacar.com. the meeting, he showed video clips of Mike Anderson’s panel on scanning at NACE. He then introduced vendor members and the association’s board before turning the stage over to SCACAR President Sarah Daniels, who provided an update on the association. Next, Choma presented “The Future Starts Now! General Motors Collision Repair Network – Proper and Safe Repairs.”

Country of Savannah, Grainger Nissan, Volvo of Savannah and Vaden Nissan in Savannah. The indictment also says a car from Mike Reichenbach Chevrolet in Okatie, SC, was stolen and brought into Georgia. “We’re talking about an investigation that’s a multi-state investigation, actually crossed state lines and also involved several other law enforcement agencies in this area,” said Savannah Police Chief Roy Minter. In all, eight dealerships and collision centers in Savannah were broken into and about 40 cars were taken. “It was a big deal, much bigger than I even could imagine,” Rader said. Chief Minter said an indictment of this size shows the commitment and collaboration of law enforcement to keep the community safe. “But it also shows that we’re going to be relentless about going after criminals in our community who are committing crimes of this nature,” he said. We thank WTOC 11 for reprint permission.

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

Join CIECA for Webinar on March 19 Dawn Mortimer, assistant vice president of IoT/Telematics Product Management at Verisk/ISO, will host the next CIECAst webinar on Tuesday, March 19 at 11 a.m. CST. During the one-hour live broadcast, Mortimer will discuss how to build a roadmap to righttouch claims and proactive loss mitigation. She will also talk about solving the “many-to-many” problem by utilizing the exchange model framework to collect data from the OEMs, TSPs and other providers in order to streamline operations and efficiency. With 30 years of experience in insurance, Mortimer has served the industry in many capacities, including strategy, marketing, I/S, claims, agency and product lines. She is currently responsible for leading personal auto product development around IoT/telematics with suppliers and insurance companies to develop new products, services and business opportunities.


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Morgan County Auto Body Program Gets State Recognition in AL by Deangelo McDaniel, The Decatur Daily

A program that Morgan County Schools wants to turn into an employment pipeline for the planned Mazda Toyota plant in Greenbrier has been recognized as an educational model. The auto body collision repair program—which is located at the Morgan County Schools Technology Park at Brewer High in Somerville, AL, and serves every student in the district’s five high schools and students at Hartselle City—was one of three singled out by the Council for Leaders in Alabama Schools. “This award recognizes schools that serve as outstanding educational models for other schools in Alabama,” CLAS Executive Director Vic Wilson said.

Morgan County students paint car panels during collision repair technology class at Brewer High School on Jan. 14. Credit: Jeronimo Nisa, Decatur Daily

The auto body program has been at the school since the early 1970s and “has always been outstanding” and prepared students for a job, Morgan County Superintendent Bill Hopkins Jr. said. “It’s nice to see that it’s finally getting the recognition the program deserves,” he said. Jeremy Childers, career tech and workforce development director for Morgan County, said the announcement made by Mazda and Toyota a year ago saying that they’d construct a $1.6 billion plant in the Huntsville-annexed Greenbrier part of Limestone County is putting pressure on career tech programs countywide to produce more skilled workers. “We’ve accepted that challenge,” he said. The Japanese automakers have said the facility could generate as many as 4,000 jobs with an average salary of $50,000 annually. Logan Cannon, a junior at West Morgan High, has been tracking the 14

plant’s development. He’s one of 46 students in the auto body collision repair program. “This is a profession I want to get into,” Cannon said, adding that he developed an interest in painting cars after watching an uncle paint a Chevrolet El Camino.

Collision instructor Glenn Winton talks to Danville High School student Dakota McCaghren during class at Brewer High School on Jan. 14. Credit: Jeronimo Nisa, Decatur Daily

Teacher Glenn Winton is a 2001 Brewer graduate who was in the auto body collision repair program when he was a student. Between his junior and senior years, he got a job in a body shop and is aware of the opportunities for students. “Three businesses called me last semester looking for advanced students, and I didn’t have them ready,” Winton said. “There is a big demand.” He said the Mazda Toyota Manufacturing USA plant will have robots that paint most of the vehicles, but every auto production plant has an onsite area that repaints about 5 percent of vehicles that robots mess up.

Brewer High School student Dalton McIntosh prepares a panel for painting in the auto body collision repair program. Credit: Jeronimo Nisa, Decatur Daily

“This is where I want this program to be a pipeline for the Mazda Toyota plant,” Winton said. Chris Mason, a senior at Brewer, said he enrolled in the program this year to “get skills I’ll need to land a good job” when he graduates in May. “I’ve learned a lot, and this will

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

help,” he said Jan. 14 as he prepared to paint a car door. When he took over the program eight years ago, Winton said he polled 15 to 20 Morgan County auto body shops about what they needed from high school graduates. He said they wanted students with entry-level skills, meaning they need to know how to do things such as car door disassembly, painting prep, sanding and parts removal. “The shops will provide specialized training,” Winton said. Body shop pay can range from $14 per hour for entry-level employees to $28 for workers with experience. Childers and Winton said students are not limited to just preparing and painting vehicles. Students in the program recently repainted some light fixtures that are in the International Space Station. Both Childers and Winston said a school that is in NASA’s HUNCH (High schools United with NASA to Create Hardware) program designed and built the fixtures, but they were painted by Morgan County students.

“We want to make sure these students are not just exposed to cars and trucks,” Childers said. “Somebody has to paint the rockets and parts for the rockets. They can be trained here at our technology park.”

Danville High student Dakota McCaghren works on a panel during collision repair technology class. Credit: Jeronimo Nisa, Decatur Daily

Wilson said the CLAS Banner School program was created in 2001 to recognize model school programs, and the auto body collision repair program in Morgan County was selected from 160 entries. We thank The Decatur Daily for reprint permission.


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New Training Model moved such a sign long before it got to this awful state—edge cases are exactly this kind of situation. An edge case is a low-probability event that should not happen but does happen in the real world—exactly the kinds of cases that programmers and machine learning processes might not consider. In a real-world scenario, the autonomous vehicle might detect the sign and have no idea that it’s a stop sign. It doesn’t treat it as such and could decide to proceed through the intersection at speed and cause an accident. A human driver may have a hard time identifying the stop sign too, but that is much less likely for experienced drivers. We know what a stop sign is, and if it’s in anything other than complete ruin, we’ll know to stop at the intersection rather than proceed through it. This kind of situation is exactly what researchers at MIT and Microsoft have come together to identify and solve, which could improve

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autonomous vehicle safety and, hopefully, reduce the kinds of accidents that might slow or prevent the adoption of autonomous vehicles on our roads. Modeling at the Edge In two papers presented at last year’s Autonomous Agents and Multiagent Systems conference and the upcoming Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence conference, researchers explain a new model for training autonomous systems such as self-driving cars that use human input to identify and fix these “blind spots” in AI systems. The researchers run the AI through simulated training exercises like traditional systems go through, but in this case, a human observes the machine’s actions and identifies when the machine is about to make or has made a mistake. The researchers then take the machine’s training data and synthesize it with the human observer’s feedback and put it through a machine-learning system. This system will then create a model that researchers can use to identify situa-

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

tions where the AI is missing critical information about how it should behave, especially in edge cases. “The model helps autonomous systems better know what they don’t know,” according to Ramya Ramakrishnan, a graduate student in the computer science and artificial intelligence laboratory at MIT and the lead author of the study. “Many times, when these systems are deployed, their trained simulations don’t match the real-world setting [and] they could make mistakes, such as getting into accidents. The idea is to use humans to bridge that gap between simulation and the real world, in a safe way, so we can reduce some of those errors,” Ramakrishnan said. The problem arises when a situation occurs, such as the distorted stop sign, in which the majority of cases the AI has been trained on does not reflect the real-world condition that it should have been trained to recognize. In this case, it has been trained that stop signs have a certain shape, color, etc. It could even have created a list of shapes that could be stop signs and would know to stop for

those, but if it cannot identify a stop sign properly, the situation could end in disaster. “Because unacceptable actions are far rarer than acceptable actions, the system will eventually learn to predict all situations as safe, which can be extremely dangerous,” said Ramakrishnan. Meeting the Highest Standards for Safety By showing researchers where the AI has incomplete data, autonomous systems can be made safer at the edge where high-profile accidents can occur. If they can do this, we may get to the point where public trust in autonomous systems can start growing and the rollout of autonomous vehicles can begin in earnest, making us all safer as a result. We thank Interesting Engineering for reprint permission.

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GICCA Hosts Regional SkillsUSA Competition in Brunswick, GA of eyes watched him. Hales was one of 93 students registered from 12 schools who participated Feb. 1 in the regional SkillsUSA competition, hosted by GICCA. The students competed in a variety of competitions and were judged by local industry representatives as they completed activities such as car body repair, home electrical wiring, welding and more. Competition categories included construction, auto mechanics, early childhood education, extemporaneous speaking, graphic design and more. “It showcases their skills,” said Jeff Lavinder, collision repair and refinishing instructor at the Career Academy. Eighteen local GICCA students competed in the SkillsUSA competition. The first and second-place winners Feb. 1 will move on to the state contest in Atlanta in March. Those winners will go up against the best in the country at a national competition later this year. “We’ve had a lot of success here in the collision repair program,” Lavinder said. “… We’ve had many top 15s in the country. If you win that, there’s an international contest

by Lauren McDonald, The Brunswick News

Brandon Hales stood alone in the collision repair lab, preparing a car fender to be spray-painted with primer.

A student works on his welding test during the SkillsUSA competition at the Golden Isles College and Career Academy Feb. 1. Credit: Bobby Haven, The Brunswick News

The sophomore, a student at the Golden Isles College and Career Academy in Brunswick, GA, worked quietly and diligently, calm despite the pressure. Twenty feet away, about 10 pairs

McDowell, that judge told me the exact same thing that you told me.’” The high-stakes environment of the contest is also a good experience for the students, McDowell said. “It puts them under pressure, and it gets them to see how they work under pressure because everybody knows there’s going to be times that you work under pressure,” he said. “And we would rather them mess up here to get a taste of that pressure than mess up in the real world.” The day ended Feb. 1 with the announcement of the winners who will move on to the next level of the competition. A student paints a car panel during the Skills USA SkillsUSA aims to let competition at the Golden Isles College and Career dedicated students demonAcademy Feb. 1. Credit: Bobby Haven, The Brunswick strate the skills they’ve acNews quired, Lavinder said. “It’s just a continuation of the “They hear it from us all the time—it’s kind of like a kid hearing it lessons we’ve been going over since from their parents, and they kind of the first semester,” he said. “It’s just roll their eyes after a while,” said Roy showing some skills that they’ve McDowell, automotive services in- learned.” structor at the Career Academy and a SkillsUSA advisor. “But I’ve had kids We thank The Brunswick News for come up to me before and say ‘Mr. reprint permission. with the best in the world.” Students prepare for the SkillsUSA competition through the practice they receive in class at the Career Academy. The contest also connects them with employers in the industries for which they may hope to work.

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Alabama Auto Plants Brace for Tariffs by Brad Harper, Montgomery Advertiser

Alabama’s automakers just want to know which business plan to use. They’d prefer the plan that keeps sticker prices lower and workers busy. But they may need the other ones. The U.S. Department of Commerce is investigating whether foreign-made vehicles and auto parts are a threat to national security. A decision is weeks away and could inject steep tariffs into the pricing structure

Workers assembled vehicles in the weld shop at the Hyundai plant in Montgomery, AL, on Jan. 18. Credit: Jake Crandall, Montgomery Advertiser

for Alabama assembly plants and their vast network of suppliers. Meanwhile, a revised North American trade deal waits to be ratified by a fiercely divided Congress, and more could change depending on that deal’s fate. The details are still up in the air as the government struggles to simply stay open. “We’re looking at all angles,” said Chris Susock, vice president of production operations at Hyundai’s assembly plant in Montgomery, which employs more than 3,000 people. “We don’t know what’s going to happen. I don’t think anybody can predict what’s going to happen at this point. But we have to be prepared.” One of the few certainties is that tariffs would make car prices jump, and not just for imports. An analysis by the nonprofit Center for Automotive Research found tariffs and quotas on imported vehicles and parts could cause new car prices to rise by an average of $4,400, an increase that would also hit American-made vehicles. A study by the nonprofit Peterson Institute for International Economics predicted similar price increases. That’s because every car company uses components that are built in different countries before being installed in finished vehicles at assembly 20

plants in America. Those networks are set up to keep car prices as low as possible. “There is no 100 percent American-built automobile, and people wouldn’t be able to afford it if there was,” said Kristin Dzizcek, one of the authors of the CAR study. The Hyundai, Honda, Toyota and Mercedes plants in Alabama— and their suppliers—would all have to find the least expensive way to absorb the tariffs. Some suppliers could move closer to the plant, but that’s also costly and takes a while, and there’s no guarantee how long the tariffs would last. Others may just pay the tariff and pass along the cost to consumers. “That’s all these hypotheticals that they’re evaluating to see the plan once that’s ratified,” said Robert Burns, vice president of human resources and administration at Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama. “People just see the car there. They don’t think about how it all comes together.” The South’s Global Engine For the first time in 2018, more foreign vehicles were assembled in the United States than American vehicles. The South has played a huge role in that change. Of 15 major assembly plants across the Southeast, only two assemble vehicles for American companies. U.S. manufacturers stick mostly above the Mason-Dixon line, while the Southeast—from Mississippi, to South Carolina, to Tennessee—is dominated by the likes of BMW, Nissan, Toyota, Volvo and Volkswagen. Alabama got its start in the auto industry in 1993, when MercedesBenz opened its first U.S. assembly plant in Vance. More than 57,000 people now work in auto manufacturing statewide, according to the governor’s office. That’s not including the expected 4,000 workers at the $1.6 billion Toyota-Mazda joint plant that was announced for the Huntsville area last year. Dziczek said that announcement and Hyundai’s plan to invest another $388 million in its Montgomery plant stood out because auto industry investment has been thin elsewhere across the country.

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

Some who lost out on those investments have pointed to the South’s labor laws. After the Toyota-Mazda plant announcement, Illinois Chamber of Commerce President Todd Maisch told The Associated Press that he believes the companies chose Alabama because it has “right to work” laws, which limit the power of labor unions by banning mandatory union dues. Every state in the Southeast has similar laws. Now, they’re all competing for a smaller pie in a time of industry uncertainty. “Overall, automaker investment has gone down to nothing,” Dziczek said. “They’re kind of sitting on the sidelines saying, ‘Are we playing football or baseball. We don’t know, but once we figure [it] out, we’ll get in the game.’” Dire Warnings HMMA maintenance worker John Hall went to Washington last summer to plead with the administration to reject import tariffs.

“This would force us to raise prices and cut production,” Hall said at a U.S. Commerce Department hearing. “A lot of Alabamians, my friends and neighbors, could lose their jobs.” It wasn’t the first warning or the last. Throughout 2018, business organizations, lawmakers and others warned against enacting auto import tariffs. Most of Alabama’s major auto manufacturers, including Hyundai, joined a lobbying group to try to make their case. Even Alabama’s Republican governor, Kay Ivey, warned against the Trump administration’s tariff plan. “Import tariffs, and any retaliatory tariffs on American-made goods, will harm Alabama, the companies that have invested billions of dollars in our state, and the thousands of households [that] are dependent upon those companies for a good-paying job,” Ivey said in a statement last year. “I strongly oppose any efforts See Brace for Tariffs, Page 25


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ASA Executive Director nications through various platforms.” Looking at the long-term plans for the association, Fisher acknowledged that ASA’s board of directors has developed a strategic plan that will be reviewed over the first quarter of this year. “The board works very hard for the association,” Fisher praised. “I cannot say enough about how hard these volunteers work and all they’ve done over the past months to fill the role I’m transitioning into.” Fisher then discussed some of the experiences that took place during his 20+ years working in dealerships and management roles before joining ASA-Michigan in 2004 and becoming its executive director in 2010. He recounted some of the successes that the affiliate saw under his leadership, especially on the legislative front. As Fisher transitions into his role in Texas, he will also be representing ASA-MI for the next several months while the group figures out how to restructure some of its affiliates. Expressing gratitude for the support he has received, Fisher explained, “I plan to carry that passion and challenge forward for the national group. We are only going to be successful if we engage our membership. Joining a country club doesn’t make you a better tennis player, but it gives you an opportunity to get involved and improve your game. We need member shops to get involved and improve their game. “ASA is focused on giving back to the industry. Everything we do will be based on our membership’s drive and needs. I like to be proactive and use the windshield, not the rearview mirror. Education and training are what make us all better.”

Fisher elaborated on how his that we have legislative representarole with the affiliate chapter led to tion for our industry, and Bob is inhis involvement with the national or- valuable in D.C.” ganization. In addition to legislation, training “The affiliates represent the local is a vital component to ASA providmembers and work hard to bring local ing members with what they need to programs to their region, chapter or be successful. While the details have state,” he said. “They are vital to de- not been completely ironed out yet, livering our message because the Fisher plans to deliver more content quicker we get the message going forward that will hit out, the better we all are. We every aspect of the automoplan to revisit the affiliate tive business. ASA will also model to determine how to continue to host monthly best help them succeed and webinars. enhance that for everyone. Fisher stressed, “I am all ASA’s success is based on about training. As a manaffiliates representing their Ray Fisher stepped ager, I was one of the first areas well, and we also plan into the role of ASA dealers in my area to have Ito explore how we can reach executive director in CAR Gold [status], certified January 2019 areas where we don’t curwelding techs and more. I rently have affiliates.” don’t like to be a follower; I like to When asked about changes ASA be a leader, and that will carry forth may see under his leadership, Fisher in my new role.” stated, “We are working diligently to Noting the importance of change be more interactive and more time- in the industry, Fisher identified one friendly. We plan to utilize Facebook of the industry’s biggest challenges as Live going forward and to constantly “making sure we don’t bury our heads make sure our feeds are available to in the sand. We need to look for the members and the industry. We repre- opportunity of what’s next. Our mesent our members, and in turn, we chanical operations and collision oprepresent the industry. I’m really ex- erations committees do a great job of cited about the things we have coming and like to use my passion and background to ask the challenging questions, look at the future and prepare for it.” Turning to ASA’s legislative initiatives, Fisher discussed Washington, DC Representative Bob Redding’s work to ensure OEM procedures are used as a proper source of information. There will also be legislative focus on telematics and who owns that information. Fisher stressed, “We have to make sure we have access for different technologies and also that we look at OEM procedures. We have to make sure we are at the table and having conversations with manufacturers and legislators. It’s important

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bringing important issues to us, and we want to utilize these volunteer committees much more through polls and surveys. The biggest thing we need to do is prepare the industry for upcoming changes, but we have the personnel in place and the right people doing the right things to keep these messages coming in a timely manner.” Many more questions about ASA’s future will be addressed at the Annual Meeting from April 30 through May 2, Fisher anticipated. Multiple topics for different generations will be discussed at the meeting, including succession planning. Fisher invited everyone to come learn more at the meeting. As the webinar drew to a close, Fisher stated, “I want to use my passion to give back and represent ASA’s membership. It’s important that the industry has a structured association to deliver messages and represent the industry like we do at ASA. Sometimes, you fall into the mode of simply trying to maintain, but we need to make sure our goals are priorities and our priorities are what’s right for the industry. We’re here for the industry.”


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Continued from Page 8

Association Event • “Environmental Safety Compliance,” presented by Sara Hamidovic from VET Environmental • “Bounty Hunter 2019: Cash in on Recalls New App and New Opportunities for Self and Full Service Operations” and “Succession Planning,” presented by Paul D’Adams Employee training will include: • Hamidovic’s “Environmental Safety Compliance,” a Hollander Educational Session • “CARCHAT Line: How to Make it Work in Your Company,” presented by Theresa Colbert of Car-Part • “New Pinnacle Mobile App,” presented by Pinnacle’s Chris Atencio and Amanda Smith The Self-Serve training will include sessions on customer engagement, production/operations, vehicle purchasing and vehicle monetization. Registration is available online starting at $49 for professional re-

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cyclers. To register or obtain more information, visit coloradoautorecyclers.com. WACTAL To Host Its 2019 Conference On March 15 and 16, the Wisconsin Auto Collision Technicians Association (WACTAL) will host its 2019 WACTAL Conference at the Best Western Green Bay Inn Conference Center. As usual, the event agenda is jam-packed with educational opportunities in addition to the networking possibilities offered throughout the conference. WACTAL’s 2019 Conference will kick off with “Building a Profitable Business,” presented by Bill Kinnard, president of Grandy & Associates. Next, I-CAR Senior Vice President Nick Notte will provide an “I-CAR Update,” followed by a WACTAL membership meeting. The evening will conclude with a reception at the automobile gallery. On Saturday, Ken Kempfer will teach a hands-on class on preand post-repair scanning that will be held at Williams Auto Body. Advance registration is required for this session.

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

Spouses will also have the opportunity to participate in the conference with three programs catered to their interests: “Make n’ Take,” “Yoga & Meditation,” and “Exercise, Eating Right and Essential Oils: Why They’re Important to a Healthy Lifestyle.” Conference registration costs $150 for WACTAL members and $200 for non-members. Different registration options are also available for those who are only interested in attending specific portions of the event. Current sponsors include Acuity Insurance, BASF and Gandrud Chevrolet, but additional sponsorship opportunities are available. For information on WACTAL, to register for the conference, or to obtain information about sponsoring the event, visit wactal.com.

NCACAR & SCACAR Prepare for 1stEver Carolina’s Educational Collision Conference The North Carolina Association of Collision and Autobody Repair (NCACAR) and the South Carolina Association of Collision and Autobody Repair (SCACAR) recently announced their plans to host the first-ever Carolina’s Educational Collision Conference on May 18 and 19 at the Cabarrus Arena in Concord, NC. The agenda is still being prepared but promises to feature some of the industry’s favorite presenters, including Mike Anderson of Collision Advice. Stay tuned for a detailed look at plans for the 2019 Carolina’s Educational Collision Conference. For more information on NCACAR and SCACAR, visit ncacar.com and scacar.com.

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Brace for Tariffs that may harm those companies that employ thousands of Alabamians and contribute billions to our economy.” In July, Hyundai’s 51,000-member labor union in South Korea released a statement to the Associated Press warning that the Alabama plant may be the first one on the chopping block if tariffs hurt sales. The union said its contracts with the company mandate that it close overseas factories before shutting down any plants in South Korea. “If South Korean car exports to the U.S. get blocked and hurt sales, the U.S. factory in Alabama that went into operation in May 2005 could be the first one to be shut down…” the union said in the statement. By December, U.S. Sen. Doug Jones was meeting with Alabama automakers at a roundtable. “They’re very concerned,” said Jones, a Democrat. Jones and Tennessee Republican Lamar Alexander recently reintroduced legislation that would

require the International Trade Commission to study the U.S. auto industry before tariffs could be applied. Its chances to become law weren’t clear. Alabama’s other Senator, Republican Richard Shelby, said he looks forward to “reviewing the Automotive Jobs Act, as well as other similar legislation, should it receive further consideration by the Senate.” Jones also talked about the possibility of shifting national security investigations to the Department of Defense instead of the Department of Commerce or implementing other measures to “call back some of the power the president has” to enact those tariffs. “Hopefully, it won’t come to that,” Jones said. The Road Ahead The Hyundai plant has spent the past year clawing back from a downturn caused by slumping sedan sales. It switched its production mix and started rolling out more Santa Fe SUVs. That paid off. The company set an all-time December sales record in North America while establishing more of a foothold in the only vehicle

segment that’s been growing. It’s selling more Hyundais at dealerships and fewer at a deep discount to rental or corporate fleets. The assembly line had slowed during the 2017 downturn as the company tried to roll out fewer vehicles without laying off employees. The plant added 75 people when it sped up the line again in July—the same month that the Trump administration was holding hearings on its tariff plan. The new $388 million engine head machining shop should be up and running by May. They’re already gearing up to roll out a redesigned Sonata in August. They expect to build 335,000 vehicles this year, up slightly from 2018. That’s the tentative plan, anyway, based on sales projections. They’re ready to change on the fly. “(Tariffs) may influence that, but right now all those are still hypothetical,” Burns said. “It does make it difficult for any business to plan.” This article was originally published on Jan. 25, 2019 in Montgomery Advertiser.

Sherwin-Williams Joins I-CAR Program Beginning in 2019, automotive refinish professionals can earn ICAR credits for completing Sherwin-Williams training courses at no additional cost. That’s because SherwinWilliams Automotive Finishes® has joined I-CAR’s Sustaining Partner™ program, an initiative designed to mobilize organizations in support of I-CAR’s mission to enhance collision repair industry training and ensure complete, safe and quality repairs. As a Sustaining Partner, Sherwin-Williams will be a valuable contributor to this long-term plan for the collision repair industry. “The more we can help our customers achieve I-CAR Gold Class designation, the more successful they will be in their business,” said Rod Habel, Sherwin-Williams Director of Training. “Better service and better education for our customers is the key to strengthening the industry and keeping people safe.”

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2019 NADA Show cars and light trucks in 2019. “We expect the sales momentum to continue this year,” said Patrick Manzi, NADA senior economist. “The 2019 auto show season kicks

tory, according to Manzi. Last year, consumers continued to abandon car segments. Light trucks accounted for 69 percent of sales, while cars accounted for 31

the board, not just on crossovers but also traditional SUVs and pickups.” Manzi also said he expects gasoline prices to remain low enough this year to not cause a panic and a consumer shift back to the car market. When NADA comes to a city for its annual show, it always leaves a little something behind as its way of saying thanks. This year, the or-

I-CAR’s large booth made quite an impression at the NADA Show. (l to r) National MSO manager Doug Schlueter and manager, business development Armin Price Director of Operations Zach McGregor displayed DJS Fabrications’ line of dollies and accessories at the four-day NADA show

off in Detroit. Dozens of new vehicles, with auto show rebates and incentives, will soon arrive in dealer showrooms across the country that will appeal to consumers and spark auto sales during the first quarter.”

percent of sales. In 2017, light trucks accounted for 65 percent of sales and cars accounted for 35 percent. About 10 years ago, the sales mix consisted of 48 percent light trucks and 52 percent cars.

ganization donated $50,000 to the San Francisco-Marin Food Bank to assist with the purchase of a new, refrigerated commercial truck. “We couldn’t be more thrilled to receive this generous donation,” said

Accudraft was represented by (l to r) account specialist Stacy Defnall and business development manager Steve Boda (l to r) David Cosio, Cody Workman and Adolph Cosio from Automotive Collision Equipment and Lorinda Teague from Pro Spot International

New light vehicle sales topped 17.3 million units in 2018, marking the fourth-best sales year in U.S. his-

“One of the main factors of this shift has been continued low oil and gasoline prices, and the fact that crossover utility vehicles are nearly as fuel efficient as their sedan counterparts,” Manzi said. “And we’ve seen fuel economy increases across

Accountable Estimating Joins CIECA Accountable Estimating recently joined CIECA as a Corporate Member. Established in 2018 by Kent Ruppert and Scott Ellegood, the company focuses on training individuals involved in the estimating and repair planning process, including estimators, blueprinters, CSRs and their management. Members of Accountable Estimating’s leadership team have followed CIECA from its inception. “CIECA standards allow our customers to share their data with us 26

Big Ass Fans exhibited at this year’s NADA Show to unveil its Light Bar. (l to r) Exhibit manager Pam Lawless, national account manager Scott Fehrenbach and vertical market business development manager John Nunnelley

in real-time so that we may offer solutions to their problems as they need them,” said Ruppert. “This allows our customers to use their information more effectively and make decisions that grow their businesses.” “CIECA’s standards are the gold standard of electronic commerce in the collision industry and offer us the ability to provide meaningful solutions to our industry,” said Ellegood. “With the help of CIECA, Accountable Estimating will guide the collision industry in taking control of their estimating process.”

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

Paul Ash, executive director of the San Francisco-Marin Food Bank. “Our trucks are the lifeline of our entire operation, and I can tell you that this new truck, courtesy of NADA,

Broadly, a marketing and social media company, exhibited at its first NADA Show. (l to r), customer success manager Janna Dolson, account executive Todd LoGuidice and senior account executive & sales trainer Jenna Simon

will be put into service immediately to help feed the thousands of people who rely on us for healthy meals each day.” NADA’s donation helped complete the purchase of a 2019 Kenworth T370, a 24-foot fully refrigerated box truck that will be used for pick-ups and deliveries in the food bank’s network of 270 pantries.


autobodynews.com / MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS

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ASA Northwest’s 2019 ATE Gearing Up To Be Another Successful Event by Chasidy Rae Sisk

ASA Northwest is busy gearing up for its 2019 Automotive Training Expo (ATE), which will be held March 22– 24 at the DoubleTree Hotel Seattle Airport. In addition to offering more than 60 management and technical courses from the industry’s leading instructors, the expo will feature more than 50 vendors, complimentary hors d’oeuvres and a no-host bar, and access to the industry’s foremost consultants, products and suppliers. Jeff Lovell, president and executive director of ASA Northwest, noted, “The most exciting thing is seeing members come together. We have 25 volunteers that help put this event together; our volunteers are the ones who make it all happen, and it’s exciting to watch them come together from all over the state as a family. “We are just 26 seats away from being completely sold out this year, and 17 classes are completely full already with two months to go before the event!” Attendees will be treated to a

lunch keynote presentation titled “Your Passion – Is It Nowhere?” delivered by John Burkhauser and sponsored by BOLT ON TECHNOLOGY. The presentation will be one of the 26 educational seminars offered on Friday. All ASA members are encouraged to attend the annual educa-

tors’ meeting from 4–5 p.m., where they can meet shop instructors in their local area and learn about ASA Northwest’s new apprenticeship program. Lovell stressed, “With the current shortage of techs and skilled workers, it’s important that we all network and support one another in order to help grow technicians required to fill the needs of our industry.” Saturday’s offerings will include 25 educational sessions, beginning with a breakfast keynote, “Stopping Long Enough to Consider What Lies

Ahead,” delivered by Bill Haas and sponsored by Worldpac Training Institute. Chris Chesney will deliver the lunch keynote, “To ADAS or not to ADAS; That is the Question,” sponsored by CARQUEST Technical Institute. Bob Ward will kick off the 12 sessions offered on the final half-day of the 2019 ATE with a keynote presentation titled “Next Generation Owners” and sponsored by Perpetual Business. The event will conclude at noon on Sunday. Some of the industry’s best presenters will be in attendance at ASA Northwest’s 2019 ATE to share their wealth of knowledge with industry professionals who participate. These include Cecil Bullard of WORLDPAC Training Institute, Maylan Newton of ESi, Bob Pattengale of Bosch, Jeremy O’Neal of WORLDPAC, and many, many more. The expo floor will be open on Friday evening from 4 p.m. until 8 p.m. with hands-on demonstrations of the industry’s latest cutting-edge products. More than 60 exhibitors have already registered to attend, including ALLDATA, BOLT ON TECHNOLOGY, Hunter Engineer-

ing, Jasper Engines and Transmissions, Kukui Corporation, LKQ, NASTF, RepairPal, WORLDPAC and dozens of other industry companies. The all-inclusive package costs just $430 for ASA members and $525 for non-members. Educators can receive a discounted package. To register for ASA Northwest’s 2019 ATE or to obtain more information, visit ATETrainingExpo.com or call 877257-2100. ASA Northwest will also debut a second ATE event on Oct. 4–5 in Spokane. Lovell shared, “We want to offer something on the east side of our coverage area. It won’t be as big, maybe 25 classes, some of which will be duplicated from our March event, and we will have a sponsor evening instead of a major expo. However, ATEEast will serve the eastern part of the state along with Idaho and Montana so we can ensure that we are bringing our members in those areas the same value without requiring them to travel as far.” For more information on ASA Northwest, visit asanorthwest.com.

Caliber Collision, ABRA Auto Body Repair of America Announce the Closing of Merger Transaction Caliber Collision Centers and ABRA Auto Body Repair of America recently announced the closing of their merger that unites the companies’ teams, brands and operations. Going forward, the combined company will be investing even more in enhanced technologies, specialized resources and innovative processes to redefine world-class standards for quality repairs and customer service in the industry. “We plan on maintaining all existing centers from both companies as we embark on our journey to create one company with one operating model and one culture. We plan on further strengthening our culture that strongly supports our teammates’ careers behind industry-leading development programs,” said Steve Grimshaw, Caliber’s chief executive officer, who now serves as CEO of the new combined company.The new combined company, now operating under the Caliber brand name, will provide customers and clients with the first national lifetime warranty along with even more offerings, in28

cluding dedicated non-drive facilities, express repair centers and aluminum-certified and high-line centers. The combined company will also offer glass repair, diagnostic scanning and calibration services and the broadest network of OEM-certified locations in the U.S. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Private equity firm Hellman & Friedman—ABRA’s majority shareholder since 2014— will become the majority shareholder of the combined company. Caliber’s two largest shareholders, OMERS and Leonard Green & Partners, L.P. (LGP), will be minority shareholders in the combined company. “We believe this merger represents the next evolution of the collision repair industry. The combination further enhances the companies’ best-in-class performance metrics, proven acquisition integration processes, strong relationships with insurance clients and career opportunities for our teammates,” said Erik Ragatz, partner at Hellman & Friedman.

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

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Industry Insight 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 www.CrashNetwork.com). Contact him by email at jyoswick@SpiritOne.com.

Committee Seeks to Build Industry Consensus Around Part-Type Definitions The confusion within the industry related to part-type definitions was evident at the Collision Industry Conference (CIC) held in Palm Springs, CA, in January when a CIC committee walked attendees through a series of multiple-choice questions. It was a topic raised at the preceding CIC at a time when the California Bureau of Automotive Repair (BAR) was reiterating its rule that all parts must be identified only as new, used, rebuilt, reconditioned, OEM or non-OEM. The BAR has stated that the terms “alt-OE” or “opt-OE” are too unclear or inconsistently used and therefore cannot be listed on cus-

the committee hopes to address in the coming year. The lack of consensus on parttype definitions became even more glaring when Weiss asked CIC attendees in which part category they would put: • A “surplus OEM part” (65 percent said they would label it “new OEM” while 15 percent said “aftermarket” and 17 percent said “other”) • A “blemished OEM part” (32 percent said “new OEM,” 20 percent said “used,” 16 percent said “reconditioned,” and 25 percent said “other”) • An “OEM take-off part or assembly” (56 percent said “used,” while 27 percent said “new OEM”).

CIC committee chairman Ken Weiss led attendees through a series of questions that demonstrated a lack of consensus within the industry about parts-type definitions

tomer estimates or invoices in that state without providing additional information about such parts, including what warranty they carry. To demonstrate the lack of consistency among part types within the industry, Ken Weiss, the new chairman of the CIC “Parts and Materials Committee,” asked the more than 250 people at the Palm Springs meeting whether an OEM part “must come in branded OEM packaging,” and 81 percent of respondents agreed that it did. But he also asked if that OEM part can be sourced only through one of that OEM’s branded dealers, and only 40 percent agreed that it did. (Most automakers in the past have said OEM parts can only be purchased through one of their dealers.) Weiss said the nearly 50-50 split over where OEM parts can be sourced is somewhat emblematic of the confusion in the industry and is something 30

How about an OEM’s private label part, Weiss asked, such as a BMW part engineered by Bosch for BMW and sold in a Bosch box? CIC attendees were about evenly split on whether they would categorize that part as “new OEM” or “aftermarket.” About half of CIC attendees agreed with the statement that “optOEM” is a “catch-all part-type description to avoid labeling a part as aftermarket,” but 30 percent of CIC attendees weren’t aware that “optOEM” (along with “alt-OEM or “surplus-OEM”) can’t be used on customer estimates or invoices under California BAR regulations. “What I’m trying to underscore is there is confusion. There is not a consensus in the industry,” Weiss said. “Different platforms should not be using different terminology to describe identical part types. We need, as industry partners, to get together and come up with clear definitions that the industry accepts [so] we at least understand what a part is.” That process, he said, will require the involvement of shops, insurers, parts suppliers and the estimating and parts platform providers. Anyone interested in participating in the CIC committee (which holds conference calls in between CIC quarterly meet-

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

ings) can sign up at the CIC website (www.CIClink.com). Downsides to Not Accessing OEM Information Directly Two other presentations at industry meetings held in Palm Springs offered examples of some of the potential limitations of relying on aftermarket scan tools or sources of OEM procedures other than the automaker’s own information websites. Speaking at CIC, Greg Potter of the Equipment and Tool Institute outlined how the organization conducts its primary function as a conduit of technical data from the automakers to the independent aftermarket (primarily aftermarket scan tool-makers). It is the frequency with which that data is provided by some automakers that could be a concern to those seeking the latest information. “Some manufacturers provide us data about six times a year,” Potter

said. “Some manufacturers provide us a single year’s packet of data each year.”

Greg Potter of the Equipment and Tool Institute said some automakers share updated technical data—used by aftermarket scan tools—as infrequently as once a year

That indicates that some changes made by a manufacturer could take up to another year to reach those using aftermarket scan tools. Other potential shortcomings are in the process as well. See Industry Consensus, Page 35


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NO . CARO LINA

S O. C AR OLIN A

VIR GIN I A

Southern Motors Honda

Leith Honda

Midlands Honda

Savan n a h

R a l e i gh

C o l umbi a

Norf olk

888-785-8387 912-925-1444

800-868-6970 919-790-8228

877-273-4442 803-691-8585

800-277-2122 757-687-3453

Dept. Hours: M-F 8-6; Sat 8-5 angela@southern-motors.com

Dept. Hours: M-F 7-7; Sat 7:30-5 parts@leithhonda.com

Dept. Hours: M-F 7-7; Sat 7-4 www.copytk.com

Dept. Hours: M-Sat 7:30-6 honda.checkeredflag.com

McKenney-Salinas Honda

Piedmont Honda

Colonial Honda

G a s to ni a

A nde r so n

Ch es t er

888-703-7109 704-824-8844 x 624

800-849-5057 864-375-2082

800-564-9836 804-414-1960

Dept. Hours: M-F 7:30-5:30 parts@mshonda.com

Dept. Hours: M-F 7:30-6; Sat 8-5 swhite@piedmontcars.com

Dept. Hours: M-F 8-7; Sat 8-4 rreese@i95honda.com

MISSI SSI P PI

Patty Peck Honda Rid g e la n d

800-748-8676 601-957-3400 Dept. Hours: M-F 7:30-6; Sat 8-5 pmartin@pattypeckhonda.com N O. CAROL I N A

Apple Tree Honda Ash e ville

800-476-9411 828-684-4400 Dept. Hours: M-F 8-5; Sat 8-4 appletreeparts@hotmail.com

Crown Honda Southpoint

Metro Honda I n di a n Tra i l

866-882-9542 704-220-1522 Dept. Hours: M-F 6:30-6:30; Sat 7-4 www.copytk.com

Vann York Automall H i gh P o i nt

336-841-6200 Dept. Hours: M-F 7:30-6; Sat 8-3

Du r h am

855-893-8866 919-425-4711 Dept. Hours: M-Thu 7-11; Fri 7-6 Sat 7-5; Sun 11-5 www.southpointhonda.com

Hendrick Honda Cha r lot t e

800-277-7271 704-552-1149 Dept. Hours: M-F 7-7; Sat 8-5 rob.thomas@hendrickauto.com

SO . CARO LINA

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Hall Honda

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Airport Honda Alcoa

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Valley Honda

Bill Gatton Honda

St au n t on

Br i sto l

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Ea s l e y

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Rich mon d Ba r tl e tt

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Dept. Hours: M-F 7:30-6; Sat 8-2 jtrail@garyforceacura.com

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Leith Acura Cary

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Radley Acura

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From the Desk of Mike Anderson with Mike Anderson

Mike Anderson is the president and owner of Collision Advice, a consulting company for the auto body/collision repair industry. For nearly 25 years, he was the owner of Wagonwork Collision Center, an OEM-certified, full-service auto body repair facility in Alexandria, VA.

It’s Time to End Shops’ Accounting, Scorecard Nightmares by Creating New Parts Code It’s time for this industry to resolve the parts code mess. You probably know what I’m talking about. It’s no secret that a lot of collision repair shops, particularly those on direct repair programs, price-match parts. Rather than use an alternative (non-OEM or recycled) part, they put a new OEM part on the vehicle, billing for it at the alternative part price. My goal here isn’t to debate whether this practice (or DRPs in general) is good or bad. Those are business decisions that aren’t the focus of what I’m calling for here. But I am saying that the pricematching practice has negative consequences for shops. First, the paperwork that shops give to their customers should always accurately reflect what was done to the vehicle. If you install an OEM part, the paperwork given to

34

the customer should state that, not inaccurately indicate that an alternative part was used. Second, price-matching makes it tough for a shop to have accurate financial reports. Let’s say a shop chooses to use a new OEM part, but because of how it is measured under a DRP, the part remains on the estimate as a non-OEM part. When that data gets transferred into the shop’s management system, the sale goes in as a non-OEM part, but at an OEM part cost. The system ends up overstating—sometimes wildly—the shop’s gross profit on non-OEM parts and understating the gross profit on OEM parts. I have a degree in accounting, and I work regularly with more than 350 shops, coaching them on their financials. I can’t tell you how many of those financials I look at show that the shop made, say, 70 percent gross

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

profit on aftermarket parts and lost money on OEM parts. They didn’t really lose money on the OEM parts, and they didn’t make that much money on aftermarket parts. It’s all a coding issue. And I can tell you, accountants and bookkeepers spend countless hours trying to figure out why the gross profit information isn’t right. So why not switch the parts code from alternative to OEM when transferring to the management system? One reason: Some shops offer some insurance companies a discount on OEM parts. So they may already be taking a hit by buying an OEM part but only charging for non-OEM, and then get hit again with the OEM discount to the insurer. A third potential downside to all this for shops: It’s known that many automakers are moving toward using

scorecards to evaluate the performance of their certified collision shops. Shops that are certified and have DRP agreements will be faced with the risk of coding an OEM part they use as an alternative part to not hurt their DRP score, only to have that hurt their scorecard for OEM parts usage with the automaker certifying their shop. Some people will suggest that price-matched parts could be coded as “opt-OE.” But that label has become so convoluted and misused as a parts type category. Some automakers have an “opt-OE” part that they sell, for example, and others don’t recognize that label at all. The California Bureau of Automotive Repair has said “opt-OE” and “alt-OE” aren’t adequate as parts descriptors. At the end of the day, I believe there’s a simple solution to all this. See New Parts Code, Page 58


Continued from Page 30

Industry Consensus “When we receive all this data, we have no idea whether what we receive from a manufacturer is complete,” Potter said. “Nobody really knows that until they have to implement it and make it work. So we let our members know there’s new data provided by, say, Acme Car Company. They will access the information that they need to repurpose into their databases and implement into their scan tools, and they will always find missing pieces. So they come back to us and say, ‘We can’t find information on this controller,’ or ‘We can’t find this routine,’ and we go back to the manufacturer and say there are some things missing. They find it and provide it to us and we upload it. So it’s a constant process we do with the manufacturers all year round.” Insufficient Information in Estimating System The other example of possible limitations of third-party providers of

OEM information was shared by Montana shop owner Matthew McDonnell during the Society of Collision Repair Specialists’ (SCRS) open board meeting held in Palm Springs.

Montana shop owner Matthew McDonnell said he found insufficient OEM repair information in one of the estimating systems

McDonnell, an SCRS board member, said his shop recently repaired a 2017 Toyota Highlander that involved replacing the dogleg on the quarter panel. The shop used the Mitchell International system to prepare the estimate and access the Toyota repair procedures incorporated into Mitchell’s system. [General Motors will be similarly incorporating its repair procedures into the Mitchell system.]

The issue? McDonnell said the Toyota procedures available through Mitchell included “maybe about 20 percent” of what was needed. “We were able to pull about four OEM documents related to the full quarter-panel replacement, but what we couldn’t pull was the corrosion protection [procedures], the foam location and installation and the safety inspection information after a collision,” McDonnell said. He said all of the Toyota information for the job they did download through the Mitchell system was at least six months old, and some was as much as a year old. The shop was able to locate the additional information needed through Toyota’s website, but McDonnell said the “bill-payer” on the job questioned the amount of time the shop spent on OEM research for information that the insurer presumed “was just a click of a button” away within the Mitchell system. “We have spent a lot of time [using] the OEM websites, and I feel that is the most accurate and up-todate source that we can find,” McDonell said.

CARSTAR Celebrates 30 Years of Business CARSTAR is celebrating its 30th year of business with plans to only accelerate its rapid growth. “This landmark anniversary means the world to our organization, and we know that we would not have been able to make it to this moment without the support of our tremendous network, customers and communities we serve,” said Michael Macaluso, president, CARSTAR. “Offering tokens of appreciation throughout the year is our way to say thank you, and as we accelerate our growth in 2019, we look forward to celebrating many more milestones with all of you.” CARSTAR has celebrated many milestones over the years, including repairing a total of more than 6 million vehicles, employing more than 8,000 people across the U.S. and Canada, opening its 600th location in 2018 and upholding a customer service NPS score of 80 percent across the continent.

www.autobodynews.com

autobodynews.com / MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS

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autobodynews.com / MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS

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National 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 crsisk@chasidyraesisk.com.

ASA Presents ‘The Even Better I-CAR’ Webinar On Jan. 30, the Automotive Service Association (ASA) hosted a webinar on “The Even Better I-CAR” at 1 p.m. EST featuring Nick Notte, senior vice president of sales and marketing for I-CAR. Notte discussed some of the refinements to I-CAR’s Professional Development Program (PDP). ASA Vice President Tony Molla welcomed attendees and introduced Notte. Molla noted that I-CAR has made some recent improvements since November’s plans and is constantly evolving. Notte explained that I-CAR evaluated its PDP 2.0 Launch and made some refinements between NACE and SEMA. “That three-month period was especially busy for us because we got so much feedback about the Professional Development Program,” Notte said. Due to delays in the learning management system design, I-CAR has delayed the launch from January to April 1. I-CAR has received feedback from shops regarding the perceived complexity of the program, such as increased levels of training, increased spending levels and a high demand for the new hands-on courses. After receiving an indication that more training would happen than initially planned, I-CAR also evaluated its staffing levels and realized it needed to adjust its capacity. Additionally, I-CAR realized that the plan to utilize schools to deliver these hands-on courses was not feasible because the majority of the schools lacked the required equipment and facilities to hosts hands-on skill development classes. Notte stated, “As we are changing our core product and service offering, all refinements must work in a logical and synchronized manner. [It is] a somewhat 3-dimensional, complicated process. We believe the outcome is a better solution for the industry and I-CAR.” At NACE, I-CAR promised that Platinum would go to ProLevel 3 and Gold Class would turn to ProLevel 2, including the prohibition of 38

one person in the shop from holding all four of the roles—though a single person can hold two roles in the new PDP. They talked about shop-level electrical/diagnostics and mechanical courses being required, eliminating turnover rules and adjusting

requirements for annual training. In addition to welding certification and aluminum training, they also talked about the elimination of Road to Gold in December. However, that has now been extended through Feb. 28. “I’m happy to say none of this has changed. We’re still delivering this to the industry,” Notte announced. Notte then provided a summary of the future state refinements. The PDP protocol will include industry common and agreed protocol with a complete update based on industry feedback to cover knowledge and skills in more detail. I-CAR has designed a purpose-built curriculum with a national schedule at fixed training sites (FTS) and is working to make core PDP courses available in Spanish. Many shops are uncertain of how pricing would work for the hands-on training because they have not yet been exposed to these courses. Therefore, I-CAR has decided to phase these in at two courses per year over an expected six-year period and likely beyond. I-CAR addressed cost concerns by offering a two-for-one deal for Gold Class shops on the two mandated classes (MIG Brazing and Squeeze Type Resistance Spot Welding) for 2019 only, with more information to come. I-CAR’s plans for in-shop knowledge assessments have also undergone some refinements. Because many shops have already taken these weld-

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

ing and hands-on courses and have participated in in-shop assessments, there were objections to paying for these services again through the subscription. In response, I-CAR has debundled them from the subscription package and provided them on an a la carte pay schedule. Some changes were also made to the transition from ProLevel 1 to ProLevel 2, providing more time for shops to achieve the 50/100 requirements. “Let’s give the industry another year to get through that scaling and get up to the ProLevel 2,” Notte noted. “There are a couple of additional courses you’ll need to take; not a whole lot, but some of your technicians will have to train up to the new PDP courses as you transition, giving you an extra year to level up and figure out the program.” Moving on to a couple more

changes, Notte noted that the renewal dates always seem to collect in December. I-CAR has opted to spread out the renewal dates for Gold Class throughout the year. Annual training required will now include six VTST courses per technician, compared to the current requirement of six credit hours, which often winds up being more hours of training. I-CAR will offer an unlimited access subscription that includes classroom, online and instructor-led virtual classes as well as turnover coverage and all-staff training. Continuing in 2019, I-CAR will recognize I-CAR training as well as training through the qualified Industry Training Alliance during Gold Class onboarding. To keep Gold Class status, shops will undergo knowledge and skills protocol, recognition requirements and skills re-verification. See ASA Presents, Page 44


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In Reverse with Gary Ledoux

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 YesterWreck@yahoo.com

The 1960s – The Collision Repair Industry Gets a Voice Each month, collision industry trade magazines provide readers with a glimpse of the industry at that point in time. Each issue is a microcosm of an entire ecosystem of repairers, estimators, adjusters, shop owners and managers, paint suppliers, parts suppliers, equipment suppliers, consultants, trainers and all the other people who help keep the industry running. They provide a “voice” to the industry that few other mediums can. From the end of WWII to the early 1960s, the collision repair industry grew exponentially—but the entire industry was in the dark! Nobody knew what was going on within the industry. Yes, there were associations, such as the Washington Metropolitan Auto Body Association, that communicated their information to their constituents, but this was on a local or regional level. People in Miami had no idea what was going on in Los Angeles and vice-versa. And then—there was a light! Already a magazine publisher, Emil Stanley started something that would eventually do more to bring the industry together and help it coalesce than anything else in the 60-plus years that people had been repairing fenders. In September 1962, Stanly introduced Volume 1, Number 1 of Auto Body News and Good Car Care magazine, believed to be the first nationally distributed collision industry trade journal. Finally, the industry had a “voice.” The monthly circulation was 45,000. (At the time, depending on your source, there were about 80,000 shops in the country.) The opening article stated, “The business of auto body rebuilding and appearance maintenance is a growing industry in itself. No auto body publication exists today that supplies staff-created news and features according to the ABN formula. A number of publications carry limited auto body sections or departments treating auto body work in a ‘fringe’ manner. ABN is a specific auto body publication for the specific auto body market and pro40

vides leadership and readership in a proven formula of ABN’s several companion publications, all in the automotive industry.” A letter from a body shop owner published in the following issue stated, “Wonderful idea, this magazine. For years, we’ve needed such a circulation. I’m so happy to see a publisher cater to [us] fender-benders.” It wasn’t long before “Letters to the Editor” started appearing on a regular basis. If subscribers read nothing but the Letters to the Editor page, they could experience a microcosm of the entire industry on a single page. It was a place where everyone in the industry could air a grievance—not just body shops. As collision repair publications do today, the magazine carried articles about current trends, IGO and other association news, technical articles and articles about how to be more profitable. In the seeming absence of today’s I-CAR, AMI and other collision industry training, S.M. “Silvie” Licitra, ABN editorial director, started a multi-installment course on “Auto Damage Insurance Adjustment.” One of the first articles that appeared in this magazine was titled “Body Restoration – A Profession.” It stated in part, “Time was (not so many years ago) when a dinging hammer and block , a metal rasp and body solder could produce fairly good results, even in the hands of the average garage mechanics. Those were the days of easy-to-get-at- fenders, straight panel sections, and smoothly flowing contours—when there was little under the hood but a simple engine, unencumbered by with the modern maze of filters, gadgets and accessories that fill every available space. Today’s master of body rebuilding must be a practical diagnostician, with the delicate touch of a surgeon, plus the skill of a practical mechanic. The blending, preparation, and application of modern paints is something acquired only by long experience with the aid of proper equip-

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

ment. Verily, today’s auto body craftsman no longer is ‘just a body mechanic.’ He’s a skilled artisan—a professional. And his business is a profession!” The editors of ABN noted that they would not display any “cheesecake” advertising, showing “shapely female legs” or “scantily clothed” women, as was the norm in automotive advertising at the time. They wanted a magazine that could be read by “the whole family” and be welcome in anyone’s home. A short article called for better corrosion protection, used by the OEs at the factory and made available to refinishers. This was due to the increased amount of salt used on roads in snow-belt areas. Another article noted, “Among the strongest allies of the independent shops are manufacturers of replacement body panels and other

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items available through independent automotive wholesalers. Such suppliers and independent insurance companies are the reasons independent shops are still in business.” This was true because the magazine was loaded with ads from different manufacturers of replacement body panels. Another article noted three classifications of work for today’s body shop: 1.) Customer-paid work, for which the customer generally wants good-quality work and is “not afraid to pay for it.” 2.) Work generated by independent insurance companies that want work done as cheaply as possible, pitting shops against one another on price, issuing a check to the vehicle owner and leaving the owner to his/her own devices for repair, and 3.) The so-called “captives.” These were cars financed and insured See The 1960s, Page 44

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Celebrity Car Enthusiast Courtney Hansen Helps Reunite Car Lovers With ‘The Ride That Got Away’ by Stacey Phillips

Every car lover has the one that got away, according to celebrity car enthusiast Courtney Hansen. Whether it’s the car they grew up riding around in with their parents, the first car they purchased or the dream ride they had to sell when they fell on hard times, Hansen’s goal is to reunite car lovers with their beloved rides in her new television show “The Ride That Got Away.” A self-described “pit kid,” Hansen grew up in Minnesota spending much of her time at racetracks and garages. Her father, Gerry Hansen, raced at Formula Race Car Club of America (FCCA) and won 27 national championships throughout his career. Her family also owned Brainerd International Raceway in Minnesota. Growing up in the automotive world, Hansen said, she quickly became an enthusiast. “Cars are in my blood, and I’m thankful that I was able to parlay my love for cars into a TV career that started 15 years ago,” she said. “Here

I am now, executive producing my latest project and one of the characters on the show. It’s all very exciting.” Hansen gained popularity as the co-host of TLC’s car-makeover show “Overhaulin’,” starring legendary auto designer Chip Foose. The show

shows for NBC Sports and CBS Sports in which she showcased million-dollar rides, rare classics and “tricked” vehicles. In Hansen’s newest project, she is the executive producer of History Channel’s auto-themed TV series “The Ride That Got Away,” which premiered in January. Hansen hosts the show with renowned custom designer and builder Troy Ladd under the brand ROYL (Ride of Your Life) Garage. Autobody News recently talked to Hansen about her new show, the advice she offers young women interested in the automotive field and current industry trends.

Hansen grew up in the auto industry and spent much of her time at racetracks and garages

What is the focus of your new show “The Ride That Got Away”?

focused on transforming a viewer’s ride into a show car within one week. She also co-hosted two specials for TLC: “Rides: Biggest Spenders” and “Million Dollar Motors.” Hansen then hosted 10 seasons of Powerblock/PowerNation for Spike TV and later four automotive

Q:

This is not a show just for “gearheads.” This is a show for the entire family to sit down and watch. It’s a fun, feel-good show with heart and characters and art. That has been the response we’ve received

A:

from fans and viewers since the premiere episode. In every episode of “The Ride That Got Away,” we are on a mission to find these missing pieces of personal and family history and return them to their rightful owners who said goodbye to them long ago. What the owners don’t know is that they’re about to meet again. After finding their ride that got away, we meticulously repair, restore, re-imagine and create a fantasy version of the dream car. Every transformation is unique and personal to its owner. For example, we turn a ‘64 Impala into a lowrider and a 1920s Ford into a TBucket hotrod. At the end of each episode, we coordinate the “surprise of a lifetime” with the owners’ loved ones. With these amazing transformations, we’re making people’s dreams come true.

Q:

Can you tell us about your role on the show and your co-

star?

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MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com


I created the project, so I’m the executive producer and I’m one of the characters on the show. I also dive in and help with the builds, so you’ll see me do some welding and grinding and taking part in all aspects of the build. I wear a lot of hats on this project. My co-host is renowned car designer Troy Ladd. He is one of the best in the world, and I’m honored he came on board with the project. He basically swept the 2017 awards season for custom car building. Together, we assembled a team of the industry’s best, so we have these incredible fabricators who work on the vehicles. They are also amazing characters who make you laugh and at the end of the show even cry a little bit. I absolutely love our team, and they are so welcoming of me and the garage. They trust me and seem to love having me join in and get my hands dirty.

A:

What was your inspiration to create “The Ride That Got Away”?

Q:

My inspiration was wanting to give back. The automotive industry has been very good to me and my family and I wanted to pay it forward. I always dreamed of doing a show with a give-back angle and I always wanted to work with Troy Ladd.

A:

When we reunite these deserving people with their beloved rides that got away, what I feel is so powerful are the family relationships that grow even stronger because of what we are doing. What is your advice to young women considering a career in the automotive industry?

Q:

I always tell young women, including my 4-year-old daughter, Holland, you can do absolutely anything that you put your mind to. I honestly can’t believe I was able to execute this projCourtney Hansen hosts “The Ride That Got Away” with ect. Everything possible custom car designer and builder Troy Ladd stood in my way. There were I also wanted to make dreams countless obstacles and challenges to come true for the people who love surmount, so I believe you can do anytheir cars. The show highlights family thing if you are focused, work hard, relationships and the special bonds maintain a good attitude and don’t between family members. When you compromise your values and who you watch the show, you can really see are. I say, “Go for it; you can do whatthat it’s not just that they love the cars, ever you want to do.” We’re seeing more and more but the cars have meaning to their family and there is a strong history women in the automotive industry working for big automotive compathere.

A:

nies, in the garage, on car shows and racing. I think it’s beautiful and there’s room for many, many more. I’ve found that the men in this industry support and actually encourage women’s involvement. I personally feel zero chauvinism, which I think is awesome. There are many different facets of the automotive world and opportunities women might not even realize are available if they have a love of cars. Depending on your skillset, there’s everything from getting hands-on with the vehicle to designing cars, working in production or even working for a big auction house. In addition to your television career, you’ve written a book. Can you tell us about “The Garage Girl’s Guide to Everything You Need to Know About Your Car”?

Q:

I wrote that book to educate women and first-time car buyers about the basics of owning a vehicle. I wanted to share the knowledge that I have, inspire more women to get involved in the automotive industry and pay attention to what they are driving.

A:

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I was honored to receive Ford’s “Life in Drive” Award. This prestigious award recognizes women who combine talent with that little something extra that allows them to break free from convention to live life with style and attitude.

“The Ride That Got Away,” starring Hansen and Troy Ladd, premiered in January

I’m starting to work on a second book that focuses on being able to achieve your dreams with integrity, without compromising what you stand for.

Q: A:

What current trend have you noticed in the industry?

We’re definitely shifting toward the hybrid and electric car movement, but I can’t lie. I’m a

Continued from Page 38

ASA Presents While in-shop assessments will be optional in 2019, Notte anticipates it will become a requirement in the future. Notte then moved into a pricing comparison of the core curriculum, noting that Gold Class shops receive 20 percent off the standard pricing. In the new program, only five live courses are required. Standard pricing will increase by less than $500 for an average nine-technician shop, but the pricing includes 126 courses compared to the 71 courses currently offered, which will get a shop to ProLevel 3. “One of the stories this doesn’t tell is that the pricing is about the same, but you’re training more technicians, and again, the price is about the same. However long it takes you to get to ProLevel 3, this is the price to do that,” Notte explained. “There is also a monthly option to pay for that subscription.” Applying the subscription ap44

combustion engine woman. That’s my world. That’s my passion. I love the sound of them; I love the smell of them; I love the performance of combustion engines. At the same time, I understand we’re more environmentally conscious these days, so I also respect the trend that’s happening. There are a lot of impressive rides out there that are electric and there is performance there as well. Although vehicles are changing, those who love cars and racing aren’t going anywhere. I don’t think cars are disappearing as fast as some people say they are. At the same time, I think there is a shift with the millennials, unfortunately, away from cars and into electronics. I would love to see the younger generations care more about cars and I think these car shows, such as “The Ride That Got Away,” will help that. If people want to submit a story on behalf of their loved one who has a ride that got away, they don’t need a car. All they need is a deserving story, which can be submitted to ROYL Garage at roylgarage.com. ROYL Garage has offices in Burbank, CA; New York City; and southwest Florida.

proach, Notte examined the scaling formula to show that the annual base shop fee is $1,000, plus $325 per technician annually. This includes unlimited consumption of live FTS delivery, online/virtual courses and Ask I-CAR through the RTS product. The skills re-verification process will actually be less expensive because a full course is not required unless the re-verification of skills cannot be demonstated. The in-shop knowledge assessment price will be reduced because I-CAR promises better efficiencies with a two-day visit in the future, compared to the current three-day visit for a shop of nine technicians. After concluding his presentation, Notte answered questions from attendees about “The Even Better ICAR.”

Continued from Page 40

The 1960s by the car manufacturer. They usually ended up at dealer-owned body shops. This deepened the rift that already existed between independent shops and dealer-owned shops. In the days before computers and the mountains of statistics we have today, an article promoting maintenance, vehicle-painting and restoration for older cars stated that this type of work is necessary to generate profits because the collision repair customers are generally “one-time patrons.” It was unknown at that time that statistically, a person is going to be in an accident periodically. Another article encouraged shops to intermix their own paint, as opposed to buying factory-packaged paint from the local jobber or allowing the jobber to mix it. The article claimed that it is more profitable and efficient for even a small shop to intermix its own paint. Depending on the workload for the paint mixer at the local jobber, a shop could wait half a day

for a mixed pint of paint. Arco Paints, the paint and chemical division of the Martin Marietta Company, was one of only two paint manufacturers advertising in this first collision industry magazine. The other paint manufacturer was Rinshed-Mason Company. An advertisement placed by the Equipment and Tool Institute of Kalamazoo, MI, asked, “Why service today’s cars with equipment and tools born in the ‘50s?” The ad invited shops to upgrade their tools and equipment to meet the needs of modern cars and replace tools that were worn or outdated. Today, there are several collision trade journals serving the industry, each with its own special twist. Autobody News is unique in the industry because it offers local news and information but with a national flavor in both paper and digital media, providing a great service to readers and advertisers. As you browse through this issue of Autobody News, consider what Emil Stanley started almost 60 years ago ... and thanks for being an Autobody News subscriber.

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PEMCO Joins CIECA

GEICO Wins Appeal in Case Filed by Miracle Body & Paint Over Labor Rates in TX

PEMCO Mutual Insurance Company recently joined CIECA as a Corporate Member. Founded in 1949 and celebrating its 70th anniversary this year, PEMCO is based in Seattle and serves markets in Washington and Oregon, offering auto, home, boat and umbrella insurance coverage. Paul Barry, PEMCO vice president of claims, has known about CIECA for many years and served as a board member, which included spending time on the executive committee in the roles of secretary, treasurer and vice chairman. Barry said CIECA has played a valuable leadership role in driving operational efficiency in the collision repair industry. “PEMCO is heavily focused on process improvement and optimizing our technology, and CIECA is a natural fit for our efforts to automate relationships with the suppliers we work with,” said Barry. “We are proud to join CIECA and expand our integration with partners using CIECA standards.” For more information, visit https://pemco.com/.

by Takesha Thomas, SE Texas Record

A San Antonio, TX, auto body shop has lost an appeal against GEICO to recoup funds it says were lost in a breach of contract claim. On Feb. 13, the 4th Court of Appeals in San Antonio affirmed the 45th Judicial District Court of Bexar County’s ruling granting a traditional and no-evidence summary judgment to GEICO Casualty Co. Chief Justice Sandee Bryan Marion ruled that MRG Inc. and Miracle Body and Paint “failed to produce evidence of mutual assent to the terms of an express or implied contract.” Miracle is a San Antonio-based, independently owned auto body shop. The company sued GEICO over allegations of breach of contract, breach of implied contract, quantum meruit and suit on a sworn account, and, in the alternative, negligent misrepresentation, fraud and fraud by nondisclosure. According to the ruling, Miracle performed auto body work on vehicles insured by GEICO, and GEICO paid Miracle according to

the labor rates disclosed in the GEICO repair estimates. The lawsuit states that after completing the repairs, GEICO failed to pay the full amount for repairs to multiple vehicles because the labor rates in GEICO’s repair estimates are lower than the rates Miracle charges. “GEICO argues Miracle did not produce more than a scintilla of evidence to establish the existence of any valid contract in which GEICO agreed to pay Miracle based on labor rates in excess of the rates disclosed in the GEICO repair estimates,” the ruling states. The ruling states Miracle argued that the parties had an implied contract “whereby GEICO agreed to pay Miracle’s invoices based on the ‘prevailing market labor rate’ for work performed, which Miracle argues is the labor rate Miracle charged.” Under each of GEICO’s automobile insurance policies, the company “is obligated to pay the prevailing market labor rates based on its overall experience in the specific market in question” in the event of a covered vehicle damage

claim, the ruling states. “In this case, any services Miracle rendered were for the benefit of and accepted, used and enjoyed by GEICO insureds, not GEICO. If GEICO received any benefit, it was too indirect and attenuated to support a quantum meruit claim. Therefore, because GEICO failed to produce evidence that valuable services were rendered to and accepted by the person sought to be charged (GEICO), the trial court did not err in granting GEICO’s no-evidence motion for summary judgment on Miracle’s quantum meruit claim,” Marion wrote. We thank SE Texas Record for reprint permission.

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Volvo Releases Statement for Repair Shops by Emmariah Holcomb, glassBYTEs.com

Volvo recently released a statement involving what is to be used for windshield replacements on its vehicles. According to the company, it wants only original equipment manufacturer (OEM) auto glass used. “Volvo Car USA LLC requires all windshield replacements on Volvo vehicles be performed according to Volvo standards at an authorized Volvo facility, using only Volvo Genuine Windshields and adhesives,” a portion of the statement reads. Volvo also stated there are “many variants” for vehicle windshields as far as the aftermarket is concerned and that there isn’t a way to ensure all aftermarket windshields meet the same standards that the company does. The new release aims to continue setting a standard for Volvo’s vehicles by only recommending OEM. “Volvo genuine windshields are manufactured to the same spec46

ifications as the windshield originally installed in vehicle at time of assembly, offering perfect fit, exact tolerances and maximum precision. Aftermarket alternatives may not meet these exact specifications and may affect the car’s passive safety technology, active safety functions as well as the overall rigidness of the body,” a portion of the statement reads. It’s imperative to have the right windshield fit and to calibrate after replacing a windshield equipped with safety features for a customer, but Volvo claims that if aftermarket glass is used, the results might differ. “Aftermarket windshield services may find it quite difficult to properly recalibrate,” a portion of the statement reads. We thank glassBYTEs.com for reprint permission.

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Day Job/Night Job with Ed Attanasio

Ed Attanasio is an automotive journalist based in San Francisco, California. He can be reached at era39@aol.com.

Fledgling Auto Body Technician is Well-Known, Dedicated Bagpiper Kristopher Muse, a metal technician at Mike’s Auto Body, is only 25, but he has been playing the bagpipes for 14 years and is a member of one of the largest nationally acclaimed bagpipe bands in the country. Muse joined the Prince Charles Pipe Band (PCPB) in South San Francisco, CA, when he was only 11. J.W. Bill Merriman, former member of the City of San Francisco Caledonian Pipe Band, taught him the art of bagpiping. The band, which began with a small number of students, has

In February 2017, Kristopher Muse graduated from Mike’s Auto Body’s training program in Antioch, CA, and is currently working at the company's Vallejo, CA, location as a metal technician

trained approximately 500 pipers and drummers and has been competing in the U.S., Canada and Scotland for more than 50 years. To be a good metal technician and excel as a piper, Muse knows training is the only way to get there. “To fix a car properly, you have to be thinking and multi-tasking all the time, and playing the pipes is very similar,” he said. “We have to memorize the music, and there are a lot of different things going on when I’m piping.” In February 2017, Muse graduated from Mike’s Auto Body’s training program in Antioch, CA. He is currently working at the MSO’s Vallejo, CA, location as a metal technician. “To complete the training program at Mike’s, I went through a lot of classroom instruction along with performing hands-on repairs on metal, plastic, panel removal and vehicle construction on salvaged vehicles. After I completed the program, I had already earned I-CAR Training Pro Level 1, and I am now also fully 48

Car-O-Liner-certified. The director of the program is Lupe Algood, who is an amazing teacher who sets up all his students for ongoing success in this industry.” Since Muse’s graduation from the program, Algood has watched him progress within the company. “When he entered the program, he didn’t know much about cars, but he has worked hard to learn the trade, and his focus is incredible,” Algood said. “He is a hard worker and stands out for his commitment to the company and the craft.” After graduation, Muse went through Mike’s Auto Body’s mentoring program, shadowing journeyman techs and learning the trade by doing it all himself. “It’s great working with someone who knows what they’re doing,” he said. “I’ve had two amazing mentors, Jim Dowton and Gary Bissitt, who are awesome teachers. I am currently working with Gary at Mike’s Vallejo location, and I learn something new every day. In three or four years, I hope to become a journeyman technician and continue on this path.” Muse plays the bagpipes at a wide range of events, including the Benevolence car giveaways that Mike’s Auto Body holds every year. His connection to the instrument goes way back, he said. “My grandmother Jean is from Manchester, England, and some of my ancestors are Scottish, so I believe that piping is in my blood,” Muse said. “My grandma introduced me to the bagpipes, and we would play them along with records. Two of my great uncles played pipes in the Black Watch, the famous Royal Highland Regiment. I was 11 when I started taking one-on-one lessons before being able to play with the PCPB during practices held on Sundays.” A big highlight for Muse’s piping career took place when he competed in the World Pipe Band Championships in Glasgow, Scotland as part of the Prince Charles Pipe Band. This iconic event was first held in 1906. The annual Cowal Highland

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

Gathering attracts more than 220 bands from 15 different countries, and the winners are recognized as world champions. “We were up against the best in the world, and it was a big thrill,” Muse said. “We did not make it to the qualifiers, but we’re talking about going back next year. It was a great learning experience.”

pressure to with your arm to squeeze the air out of the three drones and the Chanter,” Muse said. “While air is flowing through them, the drones and chanter each emit sound. Your hands go on the chanter, and that’s the part that plays the melody.” One bagpipe teacher remarked online that playing the bagpipes is trying to “keep a hole-filled bag inflated while also carrying a chair on your shoulder, marching around in a kilt, and keeping your fingers moving.” As a piper in popular demand, Muse constantly plays at parades, band competitions, corporate gigs, funerals and other events as a band member or solo act. He knows at least 40 songs by heart but will play some of the more well-known ones if requested, including “Amazing Grace,” “When the Battle is Over,” “Green Hills of the Tyrol” and “Scotland the Brave.”

Muse is a member of the Prince Charles Pipe Band, an organization that has trained approximately 500 pipers and drummers and has been competing in the U.S., Canada and Scotland for more than 50 years

Excelling at playing the bagpipes isn’t easy. “You blow into the blowpipe to fill the bag, which you then apply

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Solving the Tech Shortage: AR Collision Repair Instructor Calls Out to Industry: ‘Please Employ My Students’ by Stacey Phillips

Autobody News Invites Your Input It should come as no surprise to hear that across the country, collision repair shop owners and managers are facing a shared challenge: how and where to find new technicians. With baby boomers retiring and vehicle repairs becoming more and more complex, there is a need to address this growing problem now more than ever. Autobody News is embarking on a new approach to sharing some of the ideas to solve this problem by starting a monthly column dedicated to solving the tech shortage. We invite your input and look forward to hearing about the creative ways your businesses are finding, training and hiring technicians. Whether it’s through a co-op program, apprenticeship, job-shadowing program, workplace training program, mentorships or other methods, it’s important to share ideas and start the conversation.

In Jonesboro, AR, Jeff Smith has seen this problem first-hand as a collision repair instructor at the Northeast Arkansas Career and Technical Center. The school serves 13 high schools in the area and has ap-

to be paid above minimum wage once they graduate. However, he has found that the body shops don’t have the necessary liability insurance to cover someone under 18. As a result, he said he is losing a lot of passionate auto body students to local factory jobs simply because the wages are higher than what the auto body shops are offering. With the overwhelming shortage of technicians in the collision repair industry, Smith said something must be done to reverse this trend. If the students had more experience before graduating, he said he is convinced they could earn a more competiChandler Allison (2018 National SkillsUSA Competition) tive wage at the shops and proximately 50–60 students per se- have the ability to pursue their dreams mester who take part in the collision and positively impact the current technician shortage. repair program each year. Smith recently reached out to Over the course of his career, Smith has attempted to find work for Autobody News to share some of his his students at local body shops thoughts about what is currently hapwhile they’re still in high school so pening in the industry and his recomthey can gain the experience needed mendations to solve this dilemma.

You’re Going To

After working as a collision repair instructor for the last six years, what have you found?

Q:

The students in my class are between the ages of 16–18 and want to work in a body shop while still in high school, but they can’t due to their age. By the time they’re out of school, the body shops are only offering $10 an hour for entry-level jobs, while local factories are offering $13-$18 an hour, so they choose to take those jobs. If they received the experience needed parttime at a body shop while still in high school, I’m sure they could negotiate a higher rate after graduation. I’m finding that body shops don’t want to risk hiring someone under 18 due to liability issues (if someone were to get hurt), yet they admit they aren’t finding the skilled technicians they need. I’ve had several students who would have been excellent entrylevel collision repair technicians. Instead, our collision centers in town are competing with manufacturing

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companies because they offer higher wages in the factories nearby. We’re losing the best of the best—the kids who want to work in the collision repair industry. I have spoken with a handful of shop owners in our town, which has a population of approximately 75,000, and they have all told me that they are in need of new technicians. They have also said they are willing to train someone to do the work that needs to be done.

If we could get these high school students in a shop working part-time, then I believe that we would have a much better chance of retaining our hardworking students in the collision repair industry. Once they reach out to our competition, I believe we will continue to lose a large portion of our future technicians.

Q:

these automotive students are still in high school, employers are competing with fast food restaurants, grocery stores and retail stores.

What do you think shops can do to help address this prob-

lem? To help address this growing issue, I believe we need to begin offering students between 16–18 years old apprenticeships in a certified collision repair program in the shops. We also need to find out more about shopkeeper insurance offered to cover workers of a certain age. In my opinion, for those shops looking for technicians, owners may be able to begin taking the vocational tech students who are trained and available and put them to work as apprentices or interns. While

A:

Chandler Allison, student

The problem that I am running into is that no one knows if they are able to cover students under the age of 18 with the insurance currently available.

Autobody News wants to know: Is this happening in your area of the country? (l to r) Austin Bennett, Eli Hickman, students at Northeast Do you know of any shops Arkansas Career and Technical Center in Jonesboro, AR that can hire students who Apprenticeship pay would be are under 18 years old, and if yes, is much more competitive with this there workplace insurance available type of employer than it will be once in the event of something happening my students graduate and the com- to an underage worker? petition in my area becomes manufacturing positions. It’s no wonder Together, we can work to solve this problem with your feedback. Please we are losing technicians every day. If we are able to find work for contact Autobody News columnist these students who have an interest in Stacey Phillips at sphillips.autobody the collision repair industry, they are news@gmail.com.

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going to gain experience and most likely come to work full-time when they graduate. I love what I do, and I love to see my students be successful. Unfortunately, until I can get students working, my failures seem to be passed on to my students. I will continue to search for a program where I can put my high school students to work through the summer, after school or through work study.

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51


Does the Collision Industry Have a Crisis of Opportunity? by Gary Ledoux

Ever since the earliest days of “motoring,” when vehicle owners had to depend on blacksmiths, plumbers, bicycle mechanics and other artisans of the day to repair a broken spring or a crumpled fender, there has been a cry about the shortage of qualified technicians that is still heard today. But Josh Carlisle, auto collision instructor for the Cape Girardeau Career and Technology Center in Cape Girardeau, MO, has a slightly different perspective. He claims the current situation is more of a crisis or shortage of opportunity, rather than a shortage of people. “The younger generation has little to no chance of breaking into the collision repair business,” said Carlisle. His reasoning for the “crisis of opportunity” is two-fold: 1.) “Most shops are not interested in hand-holding new techs” said Carlisle. “They want people with five-plus years of experience. They want their new tech to hit the ground running. The new techs can’t gain any experience if they can’t get hired in the first place.” 2.) “There is a crisis of opportunity because there is a crisis of pay plans,” he continued. “Most shops want to pay a new tech around $9 per hour. For a 48-hour week, that’s only around $23K per year. Meanwhile, the new tech might have $30K in student loans, plus they have to buy tools. It doesn’t pencil out.” Based on this assumption, Autobody News went to several industry leaders and consultants to ask, “Do we really have a ‘crisis of opportunity’?” Doug Irish, department chair of Collision Repair & Refinishing Technology at Fayetteville Technical Community College in Fayetteville, NC, said he thinks there may be a lack of opportunity at the local level for students and graduates just entering the collision industry workforce. New people may have to relocate to find the opportunity. Irish said, “They may not find work in their own backyard. Right here in Fayetteville, we have three of the largest MSOs in the country. A new tech may find an opportunity 52

with them, but it may be at one of their other locations. We had one student get a job offer on the West Coast. It took a lot of commitment to move.” As for the crisis of hourly pay, Irish said, “I have not seen anyone lowballing new techs at $9 per hour in this market.” When asked about the high end of the pay scale, Irish replied, “I’ve seen a graduate with an associate’s degree start at $75,000 per year. It wasn’t in this area, but the point is there is opportunity out there. “It is true that some shop owners have no appetite for new techs. Their perception is that they have no time for mentoring people. They don’t want to be ‘babysitting’ the new guy. What we need to do as an industry is foster a ‘mentor mentality’ within each shop so we can grow people. The ageold act of ‘pirating’ people from other shops does not solve our problem.” Brandon Eckenrode, director of development for the Collision Repair Education Foundation, said he feels there are certainly some shops that only want experienced techs. But plenty of work is available for basic techs too, and plenty of new people are going through training classes. “The problem is—and any instructor will tell you this—out of a class of 20 people, there are maybe five who have shown some initiative and are willing to do the work,” he said. “The others are filling a seat. Auto shop tends to be a dumping ground in some schools when they don’t know what to do with a student. “As for the $9 versus $15 per hour pay scale—that is an issue. Yes, a person with no experience can start at a higher rate in other professions. What I always look at is the potential. A person starting at a lower rate at a body shop can train, learn from mentors and be worth more and make more over time, whereas the person who started at $15 per hour could [stay at that] rate for the foreseeable future.” Marc Gabbard is the president of GSR Quality Collision Repair in Yakima, WA, and administers a Facebook page called Collision Repair Technicians United. He said, “I prefer the new guys. All three of my current guys came from the local high school voc-tech

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

program. They were all green. For two of them, this was their first job. I’ve had great success with hiring green talent and training, and maybe that’s because I participate in an internship and mentoring program. I have hired several technicians directly out of that program.” On the question of money, Kristen Felder, well-known industry icon and president of Collision Hub, said, “Young people today—not all, but many—have been led to believe they will make big money right out of tech school. The fact is: Most don’t. They have to pay their dues. And so many are set up for failure from the start. “It’s not so much a shortage of people or even a crisis of opportunity. It’s much bigger than that—it’s a crisis of culture. It is something no Band-Aid will fix. There is no silver bullet. Our industry needs a change in culture, and it starts with the way most technicians are paid. “Most techs today are paid on a commission basis. The more they hustle, the more work they put out, and the more money they make. This

creates a number of problems, one of which is having no time or appetite to mentor new techs. In fact, we could live without tech schools if shops had a good mentoring program and a business model to support it. ABRA, Caliber and Fix Auto all have great programs that get a new person doing productive work in weeks, not months or years. “Another issue is more societal. The WWII generation and baby boomers had a strong work ethic. They didn’t mind working hard. They didn’t mind hustling; in fact, they expected to. They were motivated to buy a new car, buy a house, buy a motorcycle and boat. The WWII generation is gone and baby boomers are retiring. Their [type] will not be seen again. Those replacing them, the millennials, aren’t driven by the same motivation. Many couldn’t care less about owning a car or house, let alone motorcycles and boats. They want a different quality of life and yet, the current business model used in collision shops is based on the hustle mentality of earlier gen-

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erations. Today’s generation wants to work 9 to 5, and then move on to other things in their life. Their work does not define them. It just doesn’t work anymore for the Xbox and Google generation. “The answer is a shop pay plan based on salary with a built-in training/mentoring component. If people are salaried, the shop owner can then better control costs and work more efficiently. If they then control other overhead and productions costs and work more efficiently, they are better able to afford training and mentoring.” David Luehr, president and founder of Elite Body Shop Solutions, offered, “If a shop is only recruiting people with five-plus years of experience, it is convenient for the shop owner, but not necessarily the right way to do things. They might be missing out on some very talented people with less experience. Plus, those experienced people may have years of bad habits that have to be un-learned, whereas new people can be taught the right way of making repairs and learn that shop’s way of doing things. It is easier to adopt a culture from scratch rather than unlearn one and re-learn another.” “On the question of money: Everyone has to eat, so a shop needs to set a pay schedule that is in line with the geographic area and type of work. “One of my favorite sayings is, ‘If you want to attract more people to your business, make your business more attractive.’ The newspaper and online ads that shops use today to attract people are the same ads that were used 40 years ago: ‘Wanted: Busy Shop Needs Experienced Collision Tech – Must Have Own Tools – Inquire at…’ How we advertise makes a difference. We have to tell prospective technicians why our shop is a better place to work. The current generation is driven not by a ‘hard work’ ethic but by more intangible things. They want a career path. They want a diversified work model; they don’t want to be stuck doing the same job for an interminable amount of time.” When asked if a shop’s labor rate affects its ability to afford to train and mentor a new tech, Luehr replied, “Of course labor rates are important, but it doesn’t tell the whole story of profitability. It’s more about a shop’s efficiency. I know shops that charge $45 54

an hour and are doing well and shops on the West Coast with a labor rate of $100 per hour that are hurting. If your work is sloppy and you spend a lot of time re-doing jobs, or you are wasteful with materials and don’t keep your overhead costs under control, you won’t have any money for anything other than keeping your head above water.” Bruce King, a former Massachusetts owner of five shops and current coach for Elite Body Shop Solutions, offered, “We used to hire detailers for $12 per hour and burned through a lot of people because not only was it a boring, repetitious job, but it didn’t pay well. We found a pizza shop down the street paying people $20 per hour just to deliver pizzas! Deliver pizzas! We then reassessed the job of detailer and how important it was. The body guys and painter may have done a great job on the repair, but if we deliver a dirty car to a customer, that’s all they see and it is how the shop is rated. So we increased the pay scale and also developed a career path for that position. “I like hiring [millenials] because they are team-oriented; all they

need is some training. One of the problems shops have is they hire techs as if they were independent contractors, and then they get angry when the tech starts acting like an independent contractor by coming and going as he pleases. It’s important that they know they are part of a team and what they do affects everyone else on the team. Each person has to do what is right for the team and for the mission. As a manager, this is what we have to get across. The problem is not the individual tech—it is how they are managed. Give the techs a mission and a path and set milestones.” Jeff Peevy, long-time executive with I-CAR and current president of the Automotive Management Institute (AMi), has dealt with training collision techs for years. He realizes, perhaps better than anyone, that this is a multi-faceted issue. “We need to look in the mirror and honestly face the reality that if we do not sincerely and effectively address this issue, we will have a crisis that will cripple our industry in the very near future,” he said. “We need a willingness to work together for the greater good and recognize our in-

dustry’s success is tied to everyone. Individual efforts, though commendable, will struggle without industrywide support and acceptance.” So … is there a “crisis of opportunity” as Josh Carlisle contends? It depends on the person with whom you discuss it, their perspective, and the degree to which the issue exists. Peevy perhaps sums it up best: “Our industry has not organized itself well enough as a whole to be competitive against other trades. We lack the industry-accepted structure around apprenticeship programs. Being an industry of small businesses, we inherit the usual small business challenges associated with offering the level of benefits to be competitive.” As of this writing, Peevy, who is also Collision Industry Conference chairman, vowed to bring up this issue at the next CIC meeting and make new-tech training and recruitment a priority for the industry.

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Denver Body Shop Manager Discusses Position Statement on OEM Repair Procedures by Gary Ledoux

On Oct. 5, 2018, Rickenbaugh Automotive of Denver, CO, distributed a position statement to its DRP insurance companies that sent ripples through the entire collision repair industry. The 74-year-old auto body shop and dealership featuring Cadillac, Volvo, Infinity and Fisker essentially told its DRP “partners”: “Here’s how

nation. Rickenbaugh management, most specifically company Vice President Nick Pacifico, made it crystal clear—cars would be repaired properly, or not at all. A few months have gone by since this statement was issued— time to have the situation “shake out.” Autobody News contacted Rickenbaugh body shop manager Chris Hudson, a 28-year industry veteran,

“Three of our four DRP carriers just refused to honor our commitment to proper repair. We just don’t do business with them anymore as a DRP.” — Chris Hudson we are going to do business, regardless of your policies, mandates or subterfuge.” To paraphrase, the statement said that the shop’s garage-keeper’s insurance carrier had inquired of the body shop about how it conducted business regarding repair methods. In the wake of the John Eagle Collision case, the insurance company was concerned about the shop’s liability and thus the possibility of a huge payout should the shop be sued for performing bad repairs and/or failing to follow OE-recommended or required repair procedures. The statement said in part, “They (the garage-keeper’s insurance carrier) explained that the insurance providers are currently not educating their field staff about these procedures and that it is our responsibility to make sure that we do not deviate from any required or recommended repair procedure. They stated that should there be an incident and we were found to have not followed and documented the OEM repair procedures, they could deny coverage. Due to the extreme liability that we have when repairing vehicles, Rickenbaugh Automotive Group will not allow any of its businesses to deviate from ANY (emphasis seen on written statement) recommended or required OEM procedures.” The statement goes on to say that any manager who does not follow OEM repair procedures and does not perform the proper documentation will face immediate termi56

to see what effect, if any, the statement has had. Based on your position statement, it looks like your garagekeeper’s insurance company called the meeting with you to discuss your repair methods. Did it surprise you that an insurer would take that initiative, especially with a 74-year-old company like yours?

Q:

It did in a way. But when they cited the devastating outcome of the John Eagle case with its multimillion dollar payout and a few similar but smaller cases, it all made sense. They have to look out for themselves—and I understand that. And they were very clear about it; they said, “If you don’t do a proper repair, you’re on your own.”

Yes—all the time. We explain that not only do we strictly follow OEM repair procedures, but we are certified by eight OEs at the moment. We are part of the Assured Performance network, Certified Collision Group and are striving for additional OE certifications. Once a customer is informed, once they know what you are doing and why, they become one of your best advocates.

A:

At the time, were you already following OEM repair procedures and documenting the same way?

Q:

Yes, we were. But we wanted to take a stance—get the insurance company’s attention. We wanted to make sure that they all understood what our position was and that we would not deviate from it. We had been doing proper OEM procedures all along, but with some carriers, it was always a fight. This eliminated the fighting and bickering. It’s now the right way or the highway—case closed, end of discussion.

A:

How has this affected your business? Did you lose any of your DRP associations?

Q:

Three of our four DRP carriers just refused to honor our commitment to proper repair. We just don’t do business with them anymore as a DRP. The bickering and fighting with these carriers have simply ceased. One carrier, State Farm, didn’t seem to mind, but we get very little business from them anyway. Despite the loss of those three carriers, business hasn’t really suffered—we have plenty of cars coming through the doors, which proves you really can live without DRPs.

A:

Q: A:

Has this had any effect on your shop internally?

Yes! Something I never thought about as the statement was being drafted was the unintended benefit of tremendously raising morale among our techs. The techs have always done a great job and been proud

A:

I must assume that the statement in question was sent to all of the insurance companies with which you have a DRP agreement. What was their reaction?

Q:

Crickets. At the time, we had DRP agreements with four insurance companies, and none of them said a word or responded in any way. This is not surprising, as I’m sure none of them wanted anything in writing that said that they didn’t support OEM repair procedures.

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of where they work and the job they do. But this statement seems to have energized them. It says the company they work for is wholeheartedly supporting what they do, and neither they nor the company will be doing any kowtowing to the insurance companies. Your position statement states, “We will also be documenting any and all instances where an insurance provider attempts or recommends deviating from a required or recommended OE procedure or position statement to the Colorado Insurance Commission for review.” How many of these reports have you had to turn in?

Q:

We have turned in a few, but sadly they have fallen on deaf ears. The Colorado Insurance Commission, and probably Commissions in other states, will follow up on complaints of fraud, misrepresentation or otherwise cheating a consumer. Unfortunately, [failing to repair a car] according to OE recommendations is not a crime. Performing a shoddy, unsafe repair and placing consumers

A:

at risk is not illegal. Until the laws change—until politicians and the legal system catch up with technology— this will continue. Insurance companies will, with impunity, continue to bully smaller shops, and shops run by owners and managers who are less politically savvy to provide incorrect and unsafe repairs. The shop is left on the hook, and there are no consequences for the insurance company. our position statement also says, “If your company will not comply with the recommended and required OE repair procedures, we will not be able to fix the vehicle.” How many of these vehicles have you had to turn away?

Q:

Oh, we have turned away a few. Interestingly enough, a neighboring (but unrelated) body shop recently took the same stance with an insurance carrier and refused to work on a car. The carrier had the car picked up and towed to our shop with the same request for the same shoddy repairs. It was a very short conversation. The insurance company will be picking up the car from

A:

us tomorrow, bringing it to the next shop, and again requesting shoddy repairs.

Q: A:

Has this affected the repair parts that you use?

We have only used OEM parts. This is especially crucial now when you have cameras and ADAS monitors buried behind bumper covers, behind windshields and so forth. Many OEs specifically state to not use aftermarket bumper covers for that reason. Hudson went on to say that several shop owners and managers have contacted him about his statement— or “manifesto,” as he calls it—what it took to write it, deliver it, execute it and what effect it has had. “I would like to see more shops follow our lead, said Hudson. “I would like to see a new breed of auto body association with the pursuit of performing only OE repairs as its main agenda. The industry needs a more collaborative effort from more shops that are willing to take a stance on this.”

Continued from Page 34

New Parts Code We need to recognize a new partstype code in the estimating and management systems. If you price-match a part, you use that new code so your management and accounting systems recognize the sale and cost as an OEM part. You get accurate financial statements without skewing your OEM or alternative parts usage numbers with either an insurer or an automaker. Now, some stakeholders in the industry may not want this to happen. But it’s not fair for shops to suffer from the current accounting nightmare and the risk of “being damned if they do, damned if they don’t” in terms of competing scorecards. I’m imploring the organizations in our industry that can make this happen—the information providers, CIECA, the Collision Industry Conference, the trade associations, etc.—to make this a priority. It’s time to make this change.

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Waymo To Build Self-Driving Car Factory in Michigan by Levi Sumagaysay, The Mercury News

Waymo said Jan. 22 that it will build in Michigan the world’s first factory dedicated exclusively to producing self-driving vehicles.

John Krafcik, CEO of Waymo, speaks at a press conference at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, MI, Jan. 8, 2017. Credit: Geoff Robins/AFP/ Getty Images

After securing approval from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, the Alphabetowned autonomous vehicle company said it will build a plant in southeast Michigan, which it expects will employ hundreds of workers in a few years. “We’ll be looking for engineers, operations experts and fleet coordinators to join our team and help assemble and deploy our self-

driving cars,” Waymo said in a blog post Jan. 22 “This will be the world’s first factory 100 percent dedicated to the mass production of L4 autonomous vehicles.” Level 4 autonomous vehicles are considered high automation, just one step below Level 5, which is full automation. According to the Society of Automotive Engineers, Level 4 vehicles can perform all driving tasks under certain conditions, while Level 5 vehicles can drive under all conditions. Giving a nod to Michigan’s legacy as the heart of U.S. auto manufacturing, Waymo said that “the Great Lakes State is one we already know and love, with a talented workforce and excellent snowy conditions for our cars to test.” A Waymo spokeswoman said Jan. 22 that the company is looking for a site for the factory and that it plans to move into it midyear. Waymo expects to employ up to 400 workers there. “Every person hired within this entity will be hired to work exclusively on Waymo self-driving vehicles,” she said. We thank The Mercury News for reprint permission.

ASA Partners With Kukui to Enable Shops to Build Competitive Websites The Automotive Service Association has joined forces with Kukui as its latest Sponsored Benefit Provider. ASA Sponsored Benefit Provider companies provide special-priced member services and products to ASA members to help offset their everyday business costs. Kukui provides businesses a custom marketing website platform that integrates with each business’s Point of Sale system. This provides Kukui’s clients with quantitative data showing their return on investment, the number of new clients based on their POS system, statistics revealing their customer retention rate and areas to improve their business through the tracking of phone calls, appointment forms and feedback from customer reviews. “Throughout my career, I have been personally impressed with ASA,” said Todd Westerlund, CEO of Kukui. “The organization has stood as a stalwart of leadership in the service and repair industry. Being able to add Kukui’s member benefit to the long list of outstanding supporters is an honor.”

Thanks to the ASA-Kukui agreement, ASA members will receive: • An annual rebate of $295 to apply toward the cost of national membership in ASA • An annual savings of $1,800 when they sign up for the Kukui program • A 50 percent discount on a onetime set-up fee. For more information about this new member benefit, visit Kukui’s profile at ASA.savings 4members.com, an online benefits portfolio. To take advantage of this special offer, shops must be members of ASA. Ray Fisher, ASA executive director, said ASA is proud to welcome Kukui as its latest Sponsored Benefit Provider. “This benefit alone will cover the annual dues for those members taking advantage of the Kukui program and continue the ASA tradition of offering world-class benefits to our members. We’re proud to welcome Kukui to the ASA family,” said Fisher.

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National 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 crsisk@chasidyraesisk.com.

Women in Auto and Collision Holds 1st Meeting of 2019 On Jan. 15, Women in Auto and Collision (WAC) held its first meeting of 2019 at Ranken Technical College in St. Louis, MO. The meeting was hosted by Department Chair John Helterbrand and featured a presentation by guest speaker Chazzerene Howard, a Ranken collision student. Dinner was sponsored by Meramec Heights Collision. According to WAC President Shelly Jones, “We learned about Ranken’s automotive & collision program and received a tour. We also announced WAC’s new mission statement and discussed our goal to enhance our booth presence at career fairs.”

WAC met on Jan. 15 to discuss the group’s plans for 2019 at Ranken Technical College

WAC’s mission statement was simplified to “Industry professionals promoting automotive careers.” Jones shared, “Our mission statement was changed to be more reflec-

tive of the group of people that we have as members and to open the group to all opportunities to promote all segments of the automotive industry. This is a women-led group that has a membership of women and men from a wide range of companies and roles within the industry. These industry advocates collaborate on how to engage and attract talent. “WAC is moving into 2019 with flexibility and growth in mind. This year, we will continue to grow our membership and tailor it so that professionals can float in and out as time allows. We are finding that our mission speaks to many, but time is a barrier. In 2019, we want to make certain that members know that they are welcome to join, whether they participate in one meeting or all the meetings and events. To encourage continued growth, we made the announcement that our annual individual membership will be $50 in 2019.” WAC also discussed the goal of enhancing the association’s presence at career fairs. “We currently have tools of the trade, a mannequin dressed in a paint

suit and gear, career opportunity fliers, and WAC members to engage the youth and start conversations,” Jones explained. “Our next step is to have eye-catching statements and interactive activities that will draw students and their parents to the table. We are sourcing virtual equipment as an exciting way for young people to test out the technical aspects of the industry.” The group also discussed sponsorship levels for 2019. Sheena Wagner, WAC sponsor coordinator, thanked current corporate sponsors and announced new sponsors. “It is exciting to have reps of many of these companies participate in our meetings. Sheena has worked hard to share our mission and build a sponsor base,” Jones stated. “WAC Secretary Kelle Oeste has also been vital to this initiative of bringing in new sponsors. Between the two of them, we have added sponsorships from Kent Automotive, Vintage Air and Eckler’s Automotive Parts Wholesale Division in the last few weeks.” WAC announced that the St. Louis School-Business Partnership has invited the association to par-

BirdEye Joins CIECA as Corporate Member “Trusted by over 40,000 local businesses, our company focuses on reputation management by enabling companies to obtain reviews and feedback from review sites, social

media and Net Promoter Scores,” said David Tulkin, director of business development at BirdEye. The feedback is then used to assist BirdEye’s clients in better 60

understanding customers, benchmarking performance, improving operations and establishing a positive online presence. BirdEye was founded in 2012 by Google, Yahoo and Amazon alumni and backed by Silicon Valley companies including Trinity Ventures, Salesforce founder Marc Benioff and Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang. “Collision repair centers and body shops that use the BirdEye SaaS platform in conjunction with CCC One are able to automatically send review requests to customers in real time asking for feedback,” said Tulkin. “With authentic customer reviews, collision repair shops will be able to reach more

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

prospective customers and establish the strong online reputation required to drive new business growth.” BirdEye became a CIECA member in 2018. “We’re thrilled to partner with CIECA to help the collision repair industry improve online visibility, build customer trust and gain more customers,” said Tulkin. “We share CIECA’s mission and vision to help develop innovative communication standards that allow collision centers and body shops to be more efficient in gaining a deeper understanding of their consumers.” For more information, visit https: //birdeye.com/.

ticipate in an annual conference in February, the theme of which will be “Shaping the Talent of Tomorrow.” Jones noted, “Typically, they host 75–100 educators and industry members, and nearly all school districts in St. Louis County are represented. Julie Hemann, WAC treasurer, and I are honored to be invited to sit on a panel in a breakout session on Promoting Nontraditional Careers.” Finally, WAC announced that the group’s website has officially been launched under the guidance of WAC Vice President Jess Crump. Events, meetings, articles and Gold level sponsors will be added to the website going forward as the association strives to keep members and visitors informed. WAC will host its next meeting on Feb. 19 at North Tech High School at noon with senior students in attendance. Jason Buchheit, collision instructor, will be hosting the event and will provide lunch. This will be WAC’s first lunch meeting. If it is well-attended, WAC will consider adding more lunch meetings throughout the year. For more information about WAC, visit the association’s new website at WACSTL.com.

Winter Weather Keeps MN Body Shops Busy by Katharine Huntley, FOX 21

Auto body shops around the Northland, MN, area were slammed with work as icy roads caused numerous crashes throughout the region on Feb. 4. Ogston’s Body and Paint was in the midst of one of its busiest winter seasons in years. “A lot of cars ended up in ditches and lots of fender-benders and rear-end hits and deer hits, a little bit of everything,” said Jamey Ogston, claims handler at Ogston’s Body and Paint. The shop said it was scheduling cars to be fixed a month and a half out. We thank FOX 21 for reprint permission.


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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 era39@aol.com.

Team-Building Events Make Your Business Better on Many Levels In the old days, they were called retreats: A group of employees would meet at a hotel and go out in the woods or up in the mountains to bond, and the really smart people would figure a way out of it. Now, however, they’re called team-building activities, and more and more companies, including body shops, are holding several every year for their staff. Some employers are saying good-bye to the traditional company events and replacing them with team-building activities, removing the possibility of employees getting drunk and making a scene at the company holiday party or getting hurt by trying to be a hero at the company softball game. Some shops hire motivational speakers to inspire their crew. One MSO in northern California takes all of its employees on a three-day cruise. As the team-building event industry has grown, companies have created activities with names like Mr. Treasure Hunt, Paint Night, Parties that Cook, Laser Quest and Mystery by Design, among others. Loni Amato, president of Ingenious Solutions in Sacramento, CA, has helped the company’s clients discover team-building activities that match their goals and company mission. “Team-building is the process of turning a group of a company’s employees into a cohesive team by doing interesting and entertaining things together,” Amato said. “After participating in team-building activities together, employees can better understand one another’s strengths, weaknesses and interests. We have discovered that these events improve productivity while increasing motivation, collaboration and communication. When people spend time with each other away from the workplace, they start trusting each other more and get positive reinforcement from each other.” Here are some popular and affordable team-building activities that usually require one full day or an evening of your employees’ time. Some of these have different names 62

depending on your location, but you should be able to find these types of events no matter where you are. Paint Nights are more popular now than ever before because they provide a great opportunity for bonding through art. No painting experience is required as a performing artist teaches your crew how to paint an image that they get to take home while enjoying food and refreshments. Mr. Treasure Hunt is a city-wide scavenger hunt that stresses problemsolving and teamwork with clues, puzzles and races. Urban Putt features 14 different mini-golf courses for groups of any size, including food and libations. Some other shops host kart racing, fake mountain-climbing at a climbing gym or even bungee jumping, but make sure everyone signs a release form before embarking. Adventure Challenge courses, consisting of cables, ladders, ropes and other obstacles, provide physical, emotional and mental challenges together to build a stronger team. The Go-Game is an app that makes team-building easy and convenient and can be done in or out of the office. Mystery by Design is a great way to build your crew while solving a mystery! With more than 20 intriguing plots, your employees can get into character and let their imaginations take over. Matt McDonnell, the forwardthinking owner of Big Sky Collision Center in Billings, MT, truly believes that team-building activities help his employees become smarter, healthier and more engaged on many levels, he said. One of McDonnell’s most popular team-building events is a book club, which shows you don’t even have to leave the building to get your people involved. “Every Monday, we meet to discuss a book for one hour. The club is always well-attended,” McDonnell said. “The first book we read was ‘How to Win Friends and Influence People’ by Dale Carnegie, and we can

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

see that some of our people are now using some of the theories outlined in the book. We also read ‘Integrity: The Courage to Meet the Demand of Reality’ by Dr. Henry Cloud, and now we’re reading ‘Never Split the Difference: Negotiating as if Your Life Depends on It’ by Chris Voss. We pay for the books and buy the coffee, and it turns out to be a great experience with at least half of our employees involved. Some of our people have told us that these are the first books they’ve read since high school, so the club gets their creative juices going, and it helps them with their jobs.” Another team-building and selfimprovement vehicle that McDonnell uses every day involves physical exercise, he said. “I built a CrossFit gym in our basement, and we have a few workout groups consisting of 10–12 people who go down there daily,” he

said. “We encourage them to get in shape, and several of our employees have lost a ton of weight and turned their lives around by working out during business hours. Our motto here is ‘Look better, feel better and perform better,’ and this gym is a big part of that.” Five days a week, Big Sky Collision Center engages its employees in activities that build a better crew and enrich their lives. “We have estimator training, captain’s meetings, customer service training and negotiating schools, and we do it all in-house. We are making our people better through these classes, and the investment has paid itself back in many ways,” he said.

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autobodynews.com / MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS

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Deaths From Exploding Airbags, Shrapnel Force 2.7 Million More Car Recalls by Leighanna Shirey, Citizen Truth

In early January, Toyota and Ford announced the recall of 2.7 million vehicles due to exploding airbags in the ongoing Takata airbag disaster. At least 23 people have been killed as a result of exploding front passenger Takata airbags, leading to a massive recall that has affected almost every automaker. Toyota recently announced an additional 1.7 million cars for recall, which followed just days after Ford announced an additional 953,000 vehicles for recall. Some estimates say the recall affects as many as 350 million cars worldwide. In each horrific accident, the faulty airbag component exploded without warning, sending flying shrapnel throughout the vehicle. In addition to the needless deaths, at least 240 people have suffered injuries such as puncture wounds, lacerations and skull fractures. Florida Senator Bill Nelson is leading the charge to hold Takata airbags accountable, as Florida has been identified as the locale with the most injuries and deaths from the faulty airbags. The state has linked 83 injuries and three deaths to the airbags so far. Unstable Ammonium Nitrate At fault in the airbags is the use of ammonium nitrate, which creates an explosion reaction designed to inflate the airbags. Over time, though, and especially in hot climates like Florida, the integrity of the airbag system can become compromised, creating an explosion with too much force that blows apart a metal canister containing the chemical and sends shrapnel into the passenger. As reported by the Associated Press, the airbags did just as feared when one woman in Florida in January of 2018 died from shrapnelcaused injuries. Nichol Barker of Holiday, FL, was a 34-year-old woman who was traveling with her 5-year-old daughter, 10-year-old son and mother when a 19-year-old man in a 1999 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am made an illegal left turn in front of her. Barker’s 2002 Honda Accord struck the Tran’s Am’s passenger’s side, causing the faulty airbag to rupture 64

and fire hot shrapnel into Barker’s skull. Barker suffered 3-inch and 6inch wounds to her head, as well as a fractured skull and bleeding and bruising on her brain. Although she was flown by helicopter to a hospital, Barker was pronounced dead only 40 minutes after the accident. Barker’s

Credit: Wikimedia Commons

daughter was unharmed, and the others suffered minor injuries. Sgt. Chester T. Everett, the lead investigator on the scene, and Dr. Christopher Wilson, the medical examiner who performed the autopsy, concluded that Barker would have survived the crash if not for the faulty airbag. It is believed that Barker is the 21st person to die as a result of the Takata airbags, but the total number of injuries and deaths is considered unknown. In June of 2018, Honda reported that the 2004 death of a Malaysian driver was due to the faulty airbags. How big is the recall? Senator Nelson told product safety attorney Rich Newsome in a 2016 interview that the recall affects an estimated 250 million cars worldwide and possibly even more. At 70 million recalls, the Takata recall was already the largest recall in automotive history and now is approaching epic proportions. What’s even more alarming, as Newsome explained, is that the Takata airbags are being replaced again with an ammonium nitratebased repellant. Takata claims the difference now is that the new propellant contains a drying agent. However, in 2017, millions of the newer ammonium nitrate propellants with drying agents were found to be defective and added to the recall. Takata claims the problem is again

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

fixed because the company switched to a different drying agent. According to Newsome, Takata is the only airbag manufacturer that uses ammonium nitrate as a propellant. Other airbag manufacturers use guanidine nitrate and tetrazole, which are considered to be safer. Takata switched to ammonium nitrate in the 1990s when consumers became concerned about toxic fumes stemming from traditional airbag propellants. Takata switched to a tetrazole-based propellant, but then switched again to ammonium nitrate because it was one-tenth of the price. Did Takata know? Takata’s own engineers testified against the company, saying they warned the company about the potentially life-threatening dangers of using ammonium nitrate. “I literally said [that] if we go forward with this, someone will be killed,” Mark Lillie said to Reuters. “I couldn’t in good faith pump this

stuff out believing that it was unsafe to put in front of a passenger in a car.” Lillie and another engineer even claimed that Takata destroyed and ignored its own 2004 data that showed tests on 50 airbags that revealed defects. Takata ultimately pleaded guilty to a 2017 federal charge of wire fraud to settle a U.S. Department of Justice investigation. The settlement was for $1 billion and bankrupted the company, which was then bought out by auto components maker Key Safety Systems. Is your car recalled? A list of the recalled vehicles can be found on USA TODAY’s website or on Newsome’s website. Toyota owners can also see if their car has been recalled by entering their VIN or license plate number on Toyota’s website. Beginning in late January, Toyota vehicle owners affected by the recall will receive mailed notifications, according to Toyota. We thank Citizen Truth for reprint permission.

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autobodynews.com / MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS

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Toyota Works With Carma Project to Encourage Drivers to Check Vehicle Recall Status by Samantha Serbin, WTVM

By the end of 2019, 55–70 million vehicles will have been recalled for defective Takata airbags.

and family get their cars checked. The president of the Carma Project, Tony Lim, said the combination of heat and humidity, along with the age of the car, causes the issue with the airbags. “What happens is the airbag inflator, which is a metallic canister, if it ruptures, it is essentially shooting

and an additional $50 worth of gift cards when they actually have their vehicle repaired. “It is a tremendous opportunity for people like you and me, your mom, your dad, brother, sister, family, friends and co-workers. We can all do something really good on social media,” Lim said.

“Check your vehicles; check your mom’s; check your co-workers’,” — Tania Saldana

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said this is the largest recall in U.S. history. Nineteen automakers are impacted by this recall on Takata airbags. Toyota, being one of the impacted automakers, is working on a new project to encourage its customers to get their vehicles checked out. It is collaborating with the Carma Project, giving gift cards to people for spreading information about the recall and having friends

shrapnel to people, not only on the driver’s side, but potentially the passenger side as well,” Lim said. “So it’s a very dangerous recall that a lot of car owners and consumers need to take seriously.” “Check your vehicles; check your mom’s; check your co-workers’,” said Toyota communications manager Tania Saldana. How the incentive program works: Visit carmaproject.com and send information about this recall to your social network. You’ll receive $5 in gift cards for every Toyota owner who schedules an appointment to have their vehicle repaired

The repair is free for the Toyota owner, and they can have the service done at any Toyota or Lexus location. “What people need to understand is that sharp metal fragments could spray directly at the driver and passengers if these defective airbags deploy, and this could increase the risk of serious injury or even death,” said Saldana. You can also download the airbag recall app to see if your vehicle is impacted. We thank WTVM for reprint permission.

CARSTAR Expands Dealership-Based Facilities CARSTAR is continuing to build upon its network of collision repair facilities based in auto dealerships. At the end of 2018, CARSTAR had more than 50 collision repair facilities in dealerships in the U.S. and Canada. This trend is expected to continue in the coming years as dealership owners look to improve their collision repair facility performance and profitability. Today, nearly two of every five franchised dealerships operate collision repair centers, the National Automobile Dealers Association reports. At the 2019 National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) show, CARSTAR had an opportunity to showcase its powerful resources to auto dealers from around the world. “We’ve created very dynamic partnerships with automobile dealerships that combine the local dealer’s brand name with CARSTAR’s proprietary operating procedures, insurance relationships and training programs,” said Michael Macaluso, president of CARSTAR.

WIN Calls for Board of Director Candidates

66

of WIN while building leadership skills, business acumen and invaluable industry relationships,” said Jenny Anderson, a member of the current board and the Board Nominating Committee. Each year, the board updates its strategic plan and each member contributes to the execution of that plan. The volunteer board members work together to foster an environment that encourages the recruitment, retention, education and networking of women in the collision repair industry. New board members will begin their term and be introduced to the organization at large at the 2019 Educational Conference, May 6–8 at the Westin in Fort Lauderdale, FL. The deadline for applications is Feb. 28. For application requirements and further details, please visit www.womensindustrynetwork.com. Completed applications should be emailed to michelle.sullivan@ akzonobel.com.

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MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

All The Genuine Lexus Parts You Need For A Lexus Finish i

The Women’s Industry Network® (WIN) is now accepting applications for seats on its board of directors. The board consists of representatives from various industry segments including (but not limited to) collision repair shops, distributors, suppliers, consultants, paint manufacturers, recyclers and insurance companies. Participants from all segments of the collision repair industry are welcome, the only requirement being that the applicants are WIN members in good standing. “Volunteering for board service is an outstanding opportunity to have continuous influence on our industry,” said Michelle Sullivan, WIN chair and chair of the Board Nominating Committee. “WIN is seeking members to apply for seats on our 2019 board as we continue to drive growth and success for the organization in the coming years.” The WIN board of directors provides overall strategic direction for WIN and is responsible for making policy decisions that execute WIN’s vision and mission. “Engaging at the board level is an outstanding way to advance our industry and guide the success

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APU Solutions Renews Commitment to CIECA Standards APU Solutions, a Solera company, has renewed its commitment to CIECA and the CIECA standards. Founded in 1999, APU is based in Overland Park, KS. The company’s focus is to ensure the correct part is used in the repair process. “We work closely with our supplier partners to vet the data before it is presented to the insurance companies or body shops,” said Jay Scruton, director of product management, APU Solutions. “Our goal is to show a significant reduction in severity, supplements and an increased usage of quality alternative parts for our customers.” Since joining CIECA in 2004, several APU employees have regularly served on various CIECA committees. The company has used the CIECA BMS in a variety of B2B integrations with partners across the industry. “APU has long been a strong proponent of CIECA standards in the industry,” said Jon Delgado, APU Solutions’ senior software engineering manager. “CIECA’s dedication to the development and maintenance of messaging standards has been instrumental in APU’s product develop-

ment.” In the technology industry, Delgado said, integration is key. “Apps and services are everywhere, and they’re all talking to each other. Standards are important to facilitate these interactions and make sure applications are speaking the same language,” he explained. “Standardization allows for code re-use [and] easier message validation and reduces the need for overly customized work. In a world that’s getting more and more complicated, with things like automation and telematics, CIECA standards are critical to facilitate technical interactions.” For more information, visit http: //www.apusolutions.com

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Enterprise Holdings Foundation Contributes $75,000 to CREF The Enterprise Holdings Foundation has continued its support of the Collision Repair Education Foundation with a contribution of $75,000 to support collision education. The donation benefits the entire industry by enhancing the Collision Repair Education Foundation’s ability to offer grants and scholarships to career and technical schools and colleges and the students attending these schools. The Enterprise Holdings Foundation is the philanthropic arm of the company that operates the Enterprise Rent-A-Car, National Car Rental and Alamo Rent-A-Car brands through its integrated global network of independent and regional subsidiaries and franchises. “These students are vital to the future of the collision repair and automotive insurance industries, as well as our own business and vehicle service centers, and through our support of the Collision Repair Education Foundation, we can help students pursue their careers in the industry,” said Mary Mahoney, vice president of Insurance Replacement for Enterprise Rent-A-Car. “We’re committed to helping provide opportunities for the next generation of ve-

hicle repair technicians to receive high-quality, hands-on repair training through access to the latest vehicle models and technologies.” Clark Plucinski, executive director of the Collision Repair Education Foundation, added, “Enterprise’s continued support of the Collision Repair Education Foundation provides crucial support to the industry’s efforts to help collision schools across the country. These schools graduate productive, efficient, and capable staff members [for] day one on the job within the collision industry. Enterprise’s support assists our ability to help high school and post-secondary collision instructors provide the quality technical education their students need to succeed in the industry.” Industry members interested in working with the Collision Repair Education Foundation in support of secondary and post-secondary collision repair students, instructors and their school programs should contact Education Foundation Director of Development Brandon Eckenrode at Brandon.Eckenrode@ed-foundation.org or (312) 231-0258.

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autobodynews.com / MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS

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Is Trump About To Clobber the Auto Industry? by Rick Newman, Yahoo Finance

press this industry.”

Investors have been edgy about President Trump’s trade dispute with China. But there’s another trade threat that’s going to flare soon: the possibility of new tariffs on nearly $200 billion worth of automotive imports, which would kill jobs and send car prices soaring if imposed by Trump. Last year, Trump directed the Commerce Department to investigate whether automotive imports pose a threat to national security, with a report due no later than Feb. 17 of this year. If the report finds cause for concern—as everybody expects—it would give Trump the authority to impose tariffs within 90 days. And he has already proposed a 25 percent tariff on imported autos. The premise is ridiculous: Nobody in the national security business thinks imported cars are a threat. But the threat of tariffs is leverage Trump feels he needs to strike better deals on trade with Europe, Japan and China. Trump, for instance, wants those nations to lower their own tariffs on imports from America and make it easier for U.S. firms to enter those markets. If Trump did impose the tariffs, it would immediately hit the economy. “A 25 percent tariff could lead to a decline in sales volume larger than what a recession would produce,” said Jonathan Smoke, chief economist at Cox Automotive and owner of Kelley Blue Book and other services. “It could be autos that create the next recession.” Even if Trump is bluffing, the threat of tariffs could punish shares of General Motors, Ford and other automakers until the fight subsides. At this year’s Detroit Auto Show, Bob Carter, head of Toyota North America, told Yahoo Finance that a 25 percent tariff on imported autos and auto parts would add $1,800 to the cost of a Camry sedan—even though Toyota builds the Camry in the United States with many American components. “Consumers are the ones who pay those taxes,” Carter said. “Tariffs on automotive parts would sup-

Affecting Decision-Making Tariffs are already distorting automotive decision-making. Last year, Ford canceled plans to import the Focus Active compact from China to the United States because of the new

68

using the threat as leverage to get concessions from Europe, Japan and China. Trump and his top trade negotiator, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, could ask for the European Union, for instance, to lower its tariff on U.S. imports, since Europe charges a 10 percent tariff on

“A 25 percent tariff could lead to a decline in sales volume larger than what a recession would produce. It could be autos that create the next recession.” — Jonathan Smoke, tariffs Trump has already imposed on Chinese imports, which include cars and car parts. Trump wants companies to build such products in the United States, but Ford can’t make a profit on a low-margin economy car if it builds it here. So it won’t offer the compact in the U.S. market at all. “We had a great plan to have a Focus Active here in the U.S.,” Ford Executive Vice President Jim Farley told Yahoo Finance in Detroit. “Customers aren’t going to pay for a tariff in the U.S.” Trump’s auto tariff probably wouldn’t apply to imports from Mexico and Canada, as long as Congress ratifies the new trade deal the three countries inked last year to update the old NAFTA agreement. That would leave around $103 billion worth of new-car imports from the rest of the world, and about $77 billion worth of parts, according to 2017 figures. The Center for Automotive Research says a 25 percent tax on auto imports from all countries except Canada and Mexico would raise the average cost of a car by $2,450. There would be more production in the United States, as Trump wants, but total auto sales would fall by about 1.2 million units per year because of higher prices. On net, that would kill 197,000 jobs. And if the tariffs did apply to imports from Canada and Mexico, the economic damage would more than double. Some auto executives think Trump is more likely to bluff on tariffs than to actually impose them,

MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

imported cars but the U.S. tariff is only 2.5 percent. They could demand better access to the Japanese market, which is essentially closed to American cars. And the threat of auto tariffs would add to the pressure on China, which is already fighting a second battle with Trump over reforms he wants. There’s also the chance that Tar-

iff Man, as Trump famously calls himself, could go through with the auto tariffs, if only because he believes—against the advice of nearly all mainstream economists—that tariffs foster more home-grown employment. Some trade experts thought Trump would repeal the steel and aluminum tariffs he imposed last year, or at least exempt Canada and Mexico, once he got a renegotiated NAFTA. But he hasn’t, even though higher costs are costing automakers billions. Trump’s latest tariff gambit comes as forecasters expect auto sales to taper off in 2019, after several years of record sales. GM just announced it’s closing five plants, and other automakers may cut back as well if sales slow as expected. Tariffs would force automakers to hit the brakes harder. Buckle up. We thank Yahoo Finance for reprint permission.

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autobodynews.com / MARCH 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS

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Car Accident Total Loss Lawsuits Allege Insurance Company Violations by Sage Datko, Top Class Actions

Several class action lawsuits have been filed against multiple insurance companies, including GEICO, State Farm, Allstate, Progressive and First National, over their total loss auto coverage. These lawsuits cite many claims, including that the companies violated their own policies and have not fully reimbursed customers for the total value of their vehicles following a car accident total loss insurance payout. The lawsuits against GEICO and State Farm claim that the companies fail to include sales tax and title transfer fees in their valuation, wrongfully deflate values following car accident total loss insurance claims, and rely on invalid and outdated methods to assign a value to vehicle damages. Sales tax and title transfer fees vary by state but can often add up to hundreds or thousands of dollars. Policyholders claim that insurance companies should be responsible for paying these fees after a total loss car accident claim. One policyholder named as a plaintiff in a class action lawsuit against GEICO claims that

she was forced to pay around $1,500 in title transfer and sales tax fees after the total loss of her vehicle. Car Accident Total Loss Lawsuits A Florida class action lawsuit filed against GEICO in 2016 claims that the company’s refusal to include sales tax and title transfer fees in total loss valuations violated its own policy language. The plaintiffs in that case argued that sales tax and title transfer fees are mandatory costs associated with replacing a total loss vehicle and that under GEICO’s own policy, the insurer is responsible for all costs associated with replacing or repairing the damaged property. The plaintiffs are suing for breach of contract. A recent class action lawsuit filed against State Farm claims that the methodology used by the insurance company to assign a value to vehicles after total loss claims is not based on any industry-standard valuation method. The plaintiffs in this lawsuit claim that the company intentionally deflates vehicle value estimations in order to pay out less than the actual pre-loss value of the vehicle. The plaintiffs in the State

Farm lawsuit estimate that the insurance company has made millions of dollars from this alleged scheme at the expense of policyholders. What is a car accident total loss claim? After a car accident, an insurance adjuster examines vehicle damage and investigates the circumstances of the crash. They use this information to make a value estimate in order to reimburse the policyholder for the damages. If the adjuster estimates that the cost to repair the vehicle is more than the insured value of the vehicle, the insurance company may “total” the car, or deem it a “total loss.” Often after a total loss is assessed, policyholders are offered the fair market value of the car as estimated on the day of the accident. If your vehicle was in a car accident and was deemed a total loss by your insurance company, you may be entitled to join a car accident total loss investigation or loss suit if the company did not pay the sales tax or title transfer fees associated with replacing the vehicle. We thank Top Class Actions for reprint permission.

Symach To Sponsor IBIS USA 2019 Symach has announced that the company is sponsoring IBIS USA 2019 – World of Opportunity. The International Bodyshop Industry Symposium (IBIS) conference is being held February 13-15 at the Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa in California. “We are excited to support this world-class conference by sponsoring IBIS USA as a Titanium Partner,” said Osvaldo Bergaglio, president and CEO of Symach. “As long-time attendees of IBIS events, we have great respect for the organization and how it brings together collision repair influencers from around the world to raise the safety, skills and standards in all sectors and markets.” Since Bergaglio established Symach in 2001, the Italian-based company has developed a complete range of equipment for collision repair centers and designs, installs and trains new body shops around the world.

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