Auto body shops seeing spike in costly accidents, urge drivers to check tires

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by KMOV.com Staff | @KMOV

KMOV.com

Posted on January 9, 2014 at 7:37 PM

(KMOV.com) -- Residents who are unlucky enough to be an car accidents during the winter season will likely pay more for auto repairs.

Auto body shops say it has less to do with supply and demand and more to do with the types of accidents the winter weather causes.

Accidents this time of year are generally not fender benders where one car may rear-end another.

Winter collisions generally cause lot of suspension damage.

At Jungerman Carstar, Kerry Woodson’s parking lot is full.

He says drivers are more confident a few days later compared to when the major snow rolled in over the weekend; sometimes too confident.

“We’ve seen more calls in past two days than we did when initial 10-12 inches came down,” Woodson said. “People are getting out and not seeing that black ice.”

Woodson says the average job at his shop is about $2,100, but an accident where a car slides off the roadway- which is typical after a snow storm- can cost more than twice that.

“Your radiator and condenser all sit real low to ground so if you go off road, it can damage bottom of bumper, radiator, condenser all that and it can ran upwards of $4,000-$5,000.”

Up the road at White Auto Body in O’Fallon, Missouri, it’s the same story. They’re not seeing a lot of car versus car accidents, but instead vehicles bouncing off median walls.

“Cars that slide off the road usually go into trees, cables in the middle of the highway, concrete barriers and it scrapes down the whole side,” said repair technician Kenny Smit.

In addition to watching their speed, drivers are urged to check their tires. Repair shops are reporting a trend in the cars that are brought in, with many sporting tires that are basically bald.

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