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John Yoswick

John YoswickJohn Yoswick is a freelance automotive writer based in Portland, Oregon, who has been writing about the collision industry since 1988. He is the editor of the weekly CRASH Network (for a free 4-week trial subscription, visit www.CrashNetwork.com).


He can be contacted at john@crashnetwork.com 

Wednesday, 03 March 2021 18:37

Shops Stuck in the Middle in Battle Over OEM Vehicle Safety Inspections

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An Illinois shop conducting safety inspections called for by the automaker found a broken dash carrier in a vehicle involved in a low-speed collision. An Illinois shop conducting safety inspections called for by the automaker found a broken dash carrier in a vehicle involved in a low-speed collision.

Index

...the tough position they are putting shops in when they refuse to pay for necessary inspections.

 

“It’s not fair, and it’s not right, for the shop or the consumer,” he said. “Insurers need to step up and be part of the solution to this issue, not add to it.”

 

Anderson said his goal in challenging shops on the safety inspections isn’t to make anyone angry or add to the friction, but to create awareness about the safety inspections---and work toward some resolution to the issue. He’d like to see automakers, shops and insurers come together to find ways to reduce the friction.

 

He sees a number of things he thinks could help.

 

First, automakers could refine the safety inspection requirements by better defining when they are needed. Some call for some of the inspections only when there’s been an airbag deployment, which is helpful, Anderson believes.

 

“But others use such phrases as ‘minor to moderate collision.’ I think we need to get a better definition of what qualifies as a ‘minor to moderate collision,’” Anderson said.

 

As an example, he points to a definition the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has developed of a “minor crash” in relation to when child safety seats must be replaced.

 

Some automakers may be headed in that direction. Last summer, General Motors said it was reviewing its published requirements for inspections it currently says must be completed “after any collision.” Those procedures include inspection of the steering wheel and column, the instrument panel mounting points and brackets, and seat and seat belt mounting points.

 

“We recognize that the requirements and processes we had laid out…are extremely labor intensive and vehicle invasive,” GM’s John Eck said during an online industry meeting.

 

One proposal Eck said was under consideration would establish inspection requirements for each of four levels of collision severity, ranging from just visual inspections and diagnostic confirmation without any part removal for the most minor crashes involving no structural damage, up to...