All Hail, Parking


All Hail, Parking

Storm season isn’t over in the Plains states. Another ugly bunch of weather is circling the region right now. Reading about the tornadoes, hail and floods hitting the middle part of the country reminds me of my years in Texas and the seasonal fear of possible damage to myself, my home and my car. I’ve seen what hail can do to a car and I remember well the rows of Cadillacs protected by covered parking at dealerships where I lived.

Car dealers in Texas and other areas hit by hail recently are trying to sell off their damaged stock, some of which was damaged by hail, repaired and then hit again in a subsequent storm. According to

San Antonio is the latest victim, with a storm last week piling on more damage after one in mid-April that the Insurance Council of Texas declared the costliest hailstorm in state history.

More than 110,000 vehicles throughout the storm zone were pelted by large hail, causing about $560 million in damage, the group said. The April 25 storm was less intense, but that was no comfort to dealers already scrambling to deal with thousands of dented vehicles.

That’s a lot of dented cars. Because these storms are infrequent and impossible to predict, dealers take their chances showing cars out doors and buy insurance in case the worst happens. They call this rush to sell damaged inventory “hail mode” and some are willing to point out the silver lining.

“It actually is not always bad,” Islam Hindash, general manager of Mission Mitsubishi in San Antonio said, “because people want to take advantage of the dollars.”

If I were selling cars for a living in Texas or anyplace where golf-ball-sized hail is an option, I’d want them under covered parking, or better yet, indoors.

Read the article here.

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John Van Horn

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