Fleet News

Mobile repairs can cut cost of crashes

With fleet managers confirming that pressure to cut costs is again topping their list of priorities for 2008, a new approach to repairing company cars could provide part of the answer.

Using mobile bodyshops to manage less seriously damaged cars can reduce the time vehicles are off the road from six days to just 24 hours, and cut costs by an average of 17%.

Total Accident Management, which manages around 100,000 fleet vehicles a year, is introducing the use of mobile bodyshops.

It says 20% of its less seriously damaged vehicles can be repaired this way rather than being sent to bodyshops, which involves more vehicle downtime and car rental costs.

The mobile bodyshops are capable of repairing driveable vehicles with no more than four damaged panels, and which have no major structural damage.

The company says it is saving an average £283 per repair, as well as reducing vehicle downtime from an average of six days on a conventional repair, to just 24 hours on one that involves mobile or ‘smart’ repair.

“The UK’s bodyshop industry is full to capacity with accident damaged vehicles, some of which need minor repairs and don’t warrant taking up space in their workshops,” said Stefan Smyth, director of Total.

The company’s approach will see a minimum of 20% of damaged vehicles directed to mobile bodyshops, ‘smart’ repairs will stabilise at around 15%, while the number of vehicles salvaged will remain static at around 5%.

That means the remaining 60% of its more seriously damaged cars will go through the traditional bodyshop route.

“Mobile repair is a relatively simple concept and one that we can easily adopt into our internal processes and training schedules,” said Mr Smyth.

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