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Category: Safety and Accidents

A car sits on the side of the road with tall flames coming out of it, and a plume of dark smoke.
You might have a feeling your car is totaled, but you can still have its value assessed by your insurance.

You step out of your car, and you take a look at the damage to your vehicle. That’s the moment you know it’s more than a fender bender. You may ask yourself “Is my car totaled?”

It’s unlikely you’ll find out at the scene of a crash: The car’s value and body shop repair cost determines if it is repairable. It’s also important to know your insurance policy and the process to file a claim for repairs, which can make the process of repairs more affordable and/or timely.

 

What to Do With a Car Totaled Accident

The repair team will inspect the damage, complete the repair estimate, and compare it with the car’s current value. If the repair estimate is more than the current car value, the insurance will not qualify it for repair.

For example, a car with a value of $5,000 that needs $7,000 worth of repair will not qualify.

Check your insurance policy to know what you should expect with a vehicle that is not repairable. In most cases, the insurance company will issue you a check for the value of the car. If you do not agree with the amount, you can get quotes from used car dealers, view prices online, and note any additional or special features on your car. Show this documentation to the insurance company to dispute the amount.

Keeping a Totaled Vehicle

Cars hold sentimental value for many and some choose to repair a totaled vehicle.

Contact your insurance company as soon as possible. The insurance company will subtract the vehicle’s salvage value from the amount it planned to pay you. To drive the car again, you need a salvage title. Repairs are your responsibility.

If you want a totaled car fixed, find a body shop you trust to provide an accurate estimate to repair the vehicle.

At ProCare Automotive and Collision in San Antonio, we have experienced and trained technicians who know exactly what it will take to repair the vehicle back to a safe and drivable condition again.

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towing to local auto body shop
Figure out you options and coverage when it comes to towing.

When you get in an accident, it feels like everything is happening at once. Law enforcement are asking what happened, you have questions from the other driver, and your insurance company needs details. Additionally, you have to determine if you need towing services.

You have towing options

A tow truck may arrive to the accident scene as a request from law enforcement. Or, a truck could show up unsolicited after hearing about the accident on scanner traffic. Just like choosing body shop locations that you want to use, you have the right to select the towing company. Whether or not there is a tow truck on site, you can choose whichever service best fits your needs.

Know Your Insurance Policy

Know what your insurance policy covers when you sign up. Go back and review your policy from time to time to remember what is covered, including roadside assistance coverage. If you have that, your insurance company will cover the cost of the tow, but the coverage may likely have a maximum number of miles it can be towed. If you do not have coverage for towing, this will be an expense you need to pay out of pocket.

Also, keep in mind if your insurance company does not cover towing, you may have benefits from other places, including AAA, that may keep you from paying for that tow. Some credit card companies also offer roadside assistance.

Understand the Costs

Be specific when asking questions from the tow truck driver about all fees involved with the towing process, including where it will be towed and if there are storage fees associated. Do not allow the company to tow your vehicle without a clear understanding of the cost and if possible, request a printed invoice with the detailed pricing with the towing fee, storage fees, and any other charges. The printed invoice will be necessary to provide to your insurance company for reimbursement, if you have roadside assistance.

If you need assistance getting your car towed and you want to rest assured it will be towed to a secure location, give ProCare Automotive & Collision a call. We will schedule the tow and help you through the repair process so you can get back on the road.

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A silver Lamborghini sits in a driveway.
A Lamborghini is an expensive car, and even more expensive to repair after a collision.

If you’ve been in an accident before, you know there’s a cost to auto body repair. There are the repairs to your vehicle and any other vehicle or property you may have damaged. Some cars are more expensive than others, however. Here are some of the pricier crashes in recent years.

When you see a repair bill, think about how small it is in comparison to these expensive crashes.

A Record Attempt Damages A $5 Million Dollar Car

One of the most expensive car collisions happened at the famous Nürburgring in Germany. The driver of a Koenigsegg lost control and crashed into a barrier, while attempting to set a lap record. The driver was treated and released from a hospital.

After the crash, the car caught fire, damaging the back end. There are only seven Koenigsegg One:1 models in the world.

Not Just One Luxury Car

A 14-car pile-up is bad no matter the types of vehicles involved. But when a group of car enthusiasts were travelling together on wet roads in Japan, it resulted in disaster. Eight Ferraris, one Skyline R33, one Lamborghini Diablo, three Mercedes-Benz, and, interestingly, a Toyota Prius, were among the cars involved in this accident.

The damage for this accident was estimated at $3.85 million. No one was seriously injured in the accident, but all vehicles involved were totaled.

Crashing a $35 Million Dollar Sports Car

When you think about the unexpected cost of your collision repair, think about the owner of a Ferrari 250 GTO. Fortunately, he was not seriously injured when he lost control of his luxury car during a race and crashed it into another car. Less fortunately, his vehicle was valued at $35 million.

Collision repair for a rare luxury sports car can be costly. The parts to replace the damaged sections are rare because only a limited number of these vehicles were made. If the luxury vehicle owner has the money to repair the damage, the owner may choose to have auto body repair, but the value of the car may already be diminished without original parts.

The highly trained team of certified technicians at ProCare Automotive and Collision can repair commuter cars to luxury vehicles back to factory specifications. Contact us today to schedule a free estimate and we’ll get you back on the road.

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Mechanic repairs a red bonnet.

Your car has auto body damage, but you can drive it away from the scene of the accident. If you are not concerned about the looks of your car, you may ask, “If my car still runs, why should I fix the damage?”

There are several reasons why auto body repair is necessary, no matter if the vehicle has minor or more significant damage. If repairs are not made, there are some circumstances where it could cost you to keep the damage on the vehicle.

Damage Causing Other Damage

The cosmetic damage to a vehicle may appear minor, but it takes a highly skilled auto technician to know if there could be more damage than meets the eye. A damaged fender could cause strain to a wheel, tire, or parts under the hood. At minimum, it is best to get dents repaired to avoid further and costly damage to your car.

Necessary Functions No Longer Work

If certain features do not work on your car, such as lights or opening your hood, it might lead to a ticket. All lights, such as headlights, taillights, and turn signals must be functioning for safety if you plan to drive at night.

State Inspection

In Texas, there is a checklist used when inspecting a vehicle. If any items are damaged, such as lights or a mirror, the car will not pass inspection until the damage is fixed. Waiting to get repairs to pass an inspection could delay getting a renewed registration, in which case, you could get a ticket for an expired registration. That’s money that could be spent on the auto body repair.

Insurance

If you file an insurance claim, receive money, and then don’t repair the car, it could cost you if you have another accident. An insurance company can deduct pre-existing damage from a future settlement. It is recommended that if you receive money for a claim, to use that money on auto body repairs. To keep the money could amount to insurance fraud.

Resale Value

Depending on the extent of the damage, it could affect your vehicle’s resale value. In some cases, the cost to fix the vehicle can be less than the amount your car might depreciate if it has noticeable damage.

When it comes time to repair auto body damage on your car, contact the experts at ProCare Collision, an auto body repair shop in San Antonio. Our highly skilled technicians are trained to work on any make and model of vehicle and repair it to the maker’s specifications. We can get your car fixed so you avoid further damage and costs.

Two dash cameras are suspended from the windshield, recording the scene in front of the car.
Dash cams are becoming increasingly popular.

Examining the Dash Cam Trend

Dashboard cameras – a type of technology that, in the past, were mainly associated with officers of the law – are rising in popularity among drivers in the US. Both the reasons drivers use dash cams and the legal issues surrounding them are complex.

An Objective Eyewitness

Perhaps the most obvious motivation behind the on-board cameras – or “dash cams” – is the hope that the captured footage may help in case of an accident or ticket. Many people opting for dash cams are professional drivers whose livelihoods depend on maintaining a good driving record. Many use it as a witness in case of an accident, where the video provides time-stamped proof of the driver’s actions.

In one example, a driver who was pulled over for using his cell phone while driving was found to be innocent when the footage from his two-way dash cam revealed that he was merely scratching his ear, not violating the law. Dash cam footage might also help assign fault in insurance claims, helping victims avoid both undeserved rate increases and deductible expenses when they take their car to their body shop.

The cameras can provide a more objective account of an incident than humans might be able to provide. Regardless of good intentions, high-stress events like car accidents can result in less-than-perfect recall from the people involved.

Could Cameras Create Better Drivers?

Some dash cam proponents suggest that on-board cameras could be used to create better drivers. For example, parents of new teen drivers could use dash cam footage to monitor their young drivers and provide feedback. It might be helpful for a teen driver to watch how they are displaying reckless habits before they lead to an accident or ticket.

What’s more, some dash cam users feel that having the devices in their car has made them into more responsible and mindful drivers. The very awareness that you are being recorded might curb reckless driving habits. And in reviewing footage, drivers have the opportunity to spot bad driving habits they weren’t aware they were guilty of. The practice of reviewing the video from on-board cameras might be beneficial for both new drivers and veterans behind the wheel, though studies to confirm this idea are still needed.

What Does the Law Say?

Generally speaking, dash cam use is considered legal and the footage the units provide can usually be used as evidence in a court of law. But, different states have different rules about the devices’ footage and their physical placement in the vehicle. Texas allows dashboard cams with some restrictions.

Regulations about where and how the cameras can be mounted might vary, as can a state’s restrictions on recording people (like passengers in the vehicle) without consent. If dash cams continue to grow in popularity, the rules regulating their use will likely become more established.

The next time you are dealing with car damage, regardless if you captured the incident with an on-board cam, call the expert team at ProCare Collision, a San Antonio paint and body shop.

Cars drive along interstate 35 in San Antonio.
San Antonio traffic is bad enough. Will the increasing population make it worse?

San Antonio ranked No. 1 in population growth in the nation from 2016-2017 according to the US Census Bureau. That’s 66 people moving to San Antonio per day. And other cities in Texas have been close behind, adding more commuters and travelers to our roads.

Texas has been thriving, and as a result, growing steadily. A growing city can bring new opportunities, expanded culture and increased energy, but not without a few growing pains. One common concern for residents: How is the rising population affecting traffic?

More traffic

San Antonio is already the seventh largest city in the nation, and with Texas’ statewide population expected to increase from its current 28 million to nearly 40 million by 2050, San Antonio can expect continued growth. More residents means more cars on the road, and in turn, more congested highways and traffic accidents.

In 2009, San Antonio commuters spent an average of 39 hours a year in traffic, but by 2014, drivers were sitting in traffic around 44 hours.

More accidents

With increased numbers of drivers, accident rates are at risk of increasing, too. And unfortunately, San Antonio’s rate of traffic fatalities is already a good deal higher than experts would like. In 2014, US cities with the safest driving records had traffic fatality rates of around 3.2 deaths per 100,000 people. The same year, San Antonio’s rate was 10.57 fatalities per 100,000. (Although, San Antonio was close to the national average of 11.05).

Options for the future

As the population grows and more people get stuck in traffic, get into accidents, and pile into San Antonio body shops, it is worth considering ways to ease the pressure of congested roadways in a growing city.

ConnectSA, a non-profit, was formed in April 2018 and tasked with possible transportation solutions for San Antonio. Solutions include a trackless train system, better-integrated public transportation, and easier paying options for that transportation. Whatever the impact these solutions might have, San Antonio roads could be changing drastically in coming years.

A blue bike with a brown basket leans against a storefront.
Choosing alternative transportation when possible can help reduce traffic on the roads.

On an individual level, you can help make the roads better by using public transportation or carpooling can help reduce some of the backup on crowded streets. Also, if you’re able to walk or bike to your destination, you can avoid traffic and free up some space on the road.

While San Antonio and surrounding areas like Victoria continue to grow, the city, state and citizens alike will develop new ways to ease the transportation strain on Alamo City.

If you wind up in a traffic accident on a busy road, contact the experienced and helpful staff at ProCare Collision. Whether you need auto painting or auto body repair in San Antonio and Victoria, our expert team will help you get back on the road quickly, and back out exploring our beautiful (and popular) city.

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