This topic should be in another of the columns that hang about this bit of the Herald.
In praise of- the wee garage at the end of my street. Or What's the story with- car insurance companies?
My sad tale begins on a recent icy night. A neighbour calls to say a car has bashed into my parked vehicle, reversed, and sped off. He didn't get the registration of the silver hatchback.
I phone the police to report the incident. As I put down the phone, there is a bang from outwith. A black car has crashed into the back of my motor causing substantially more damage. The driver reverses and speeds off. Again, no registration number.
As I examine the damage from collision number two, a gritting lorry fails to take the icy corner and slides towards my car.
Sadly, the gritter driver narrowly avoids collision. If he had had the good grace to smash my motor to a written-off pulp, the council would have paid.
I had to laugh grimly about my motor being hit twice in 15 minutes and narrowly escaping a third bashing. The laughter stopped when I spoke to my insurance company, the one run by the affable bulldog.
There was a £200 excess. With no guilty party from whom Churchill could recoup repair costs, I would lose my no-claims bonus.
After long debate with call-centre staff reading from a script and not answering questions, I persuaded a senior person to get out his actuarial pencil and estimate what my loss of no-claims might cost.
My new bumper would cost me upwards of £500.
I consulted the wee garage. They are not fans of my Renault Megane. They once had to remove a front wheel just to replace a bulb in a headlight.
The wee garage is opposed to big repair bills where half a modern car has to be replaced because of one broken bit.
My motor will get an economic bumper transplant as soon as they find a donor that has been irreparably bashed in the front.
Thank you, wee garage. As for the two motorists who played dodgems with my car and drove off, obviously I don't know who they are. But they know who they are and they know what they did.
I wish them a civically-responsible new year.
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