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Letters  

Not taking tow-ins

Has anybody else had this experience with collision shops recently?

I hit (and sadly, killed) a deer in my Ford Maverick. The grille was smashed, the hood buckled and both headlights were destroyed. Thankfully, the air bags did not deploy.

It looks fixable, although not drivable. The RCMP had a tow truck called and it was taken to its yard. I initially wanted it towed home but the driver told me ICBC may not cover the cost, unless he took it to its yard.

Next, I learned that under ICBC rules, drivers are responsible for finding a repair shop themselves, and for booking an estimate.

OK (I thought). It's easy enough to make a few calls, right?

I phoned every accredited local shop on ICBC’s list and was told the same thing: “We're not taking tow-ins at this time."

Even after explaining the vehicle runs and is not leaking fluids, they refused and told me to try back in two weeks. One shop said try back in three months.

They want to focus on the easy, in and out type of jobs. (I'm paraphrasing a bit here)

How is one expected to get an estimate, if you can't drive, or even tow, your vehicle to the shop?

Is it coincidence that the towing companies are now going to have to charge ICBC hundreds of dollars for storage fees while I find a shop to estimate my truck? Surely they couldn't know local body shops wouldn't take (vehicles)? Right?

Oh well. I will keep expanding my radius to find a shop. I am currently checking Penticton & Merritt. Then, I guess I'll try the Lower Mainland. The tow company will fare quite well either way.

Maybe there's still a few bugs to work out at ICBC?

Sean Clark, Kelowna



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