Inside the smash repairs market
Using leaser measuring equipment and modern computer technology, the truck repair industry has come a long way over the past decade or so. Even though we all aim at a zero incident rate, they are crucial for the trucking industry to survive and thrive.
It may be a minor scrape in city traffic or a devastating multi vehicle incident on a remote inland road, but accidents are an unfortunate fact of life, to the point that insurance and other related costs are now commonly factored into the budget of being in the truck business. These incidents are referred to as accidents rather than ‘deliberates’ for good reason, and most transport operators today have developed a close relationship with their insurer to handle them as professionally as possible.
A good example of the impact accidents can or cannot have on a company’s bottom line is the transport division of Lindsay Australia. According to the company’s annual report, Lindsay successfully reduced its accident rate during the 2014 financial year, which resulted in a decease in insurance and claim costs of approximately $1.4million compared to 2013 – money that goes straight back to the bottom line.
Yet the increasing number of trucks and the long distances travelled in Australia mean that even with impeccable safety and compliance regimes in place, accidents will still occur. Trucks travel in excess of 16 billion kilometres on Australian roads every year, and while everyone’s goal is to have zero accidents, the reality is that incidents will happen.
Smart people will be prepared for that eventuality, and the repair industry itself has to go with the times too. The repair of accident-damaged trucks has become increasingly specialised due to the complexity of modern commercial vehicles, yet transport companies expect a damaged vehicle to be returned in a condition that is as good if not better than its pre-accident state.
To read the full report, subscribe to Prime Mover - out now!