Shopping center accommodating cars needing hail-damage repairs

Posted at 6:57 PM, Jun 22, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-22 20:57:41-04

Cars with hail damage are making up more than 17,000 insurance claims coming in at more than $104 million.

And businesses on West Fillmore street are feeling the ripple effects.

Cars in need of repair are flooding the parking lot of the shopping plaza at the 400 block of west fillmore street.
They’re all customers of "Auto Glass Now" or AGN, who are busier than ever.

"We book a lot of business so, therefore, say you have 20 cars coming in in the morning, you gotta have a spot for them," said Ryan Mccann, an auto glass technician at Auto Glass Now.

But those spots are running low.

"So it is very tiny, with as many vehicles as we get through a day, as you can see here, there’s not enough slots," added Mccann.
"So we have to take what we can."

Businesses say it’s been tough to work around the shortage.

"If we can’t have anybody parking here, we’re going to have a small amount of business here," said Ronnie Dodge, an employee at the vape shop "Blown." 
"And it’s really hurting our shop right now."

The property owner told News 5 each business has an allotted number of spots.
But since the hailstorm brought with it extra customers for AGN, he partnered up with a nearby lot to add 15 extra spots with the hopes of accommodating AGN and alleviating congestion.

"They were just stacking cars on top of other cars," said Dodge. 
"They actually had to go out there and put buckets with ‘no parking’ signs, ladders, anything they can use just to keep people to follow the parking rules out there."

On average, it takes an hour to repair each car.

"We want to get them in, we want to get them out," said Mccann.
"It’s a service business, you know, to please the customer."

Pleasing customers is also what "Blown" vape shop is trying to do.
But right now, they’re having to apologize and explain first.

"A lot of frustration, I actually watch them just drive and some leave," said Dodge.
"And our loyal customers will park and then they will walk up and here and say ‘what’s going on? why do all these cars have damage?’ you know, they don’t understand."

Even though this situation is currently being resolved, the question lingers for businesses of whether it could happen again.

"So are we going to continue to have, you know, consequences from another storm?" Dodge reflected.
"So I am very concerned about that."

Now *if* another hail storm were to hit and more cars were to pour in, the property owner told News 5 AGN will have to make arrangements for additional parking or risk the cars being towed.
Although the owner added, AGN’s manager is doing the best the can to deal with the situation.