About 800 Sandy-damaged Ford vehicles to be scrapped
About 800 Ford Motor Co. vehicles will need to be scrapped from Superstorm Sandy damage, mainly at dealerships, Ford's chief sales analyst, Erich Merkle, said Friday.
So far, automakers have reported nearly 17,000 new vehicles damaged by Sandy, most of which will be scrapped. On Wednesday, Chrysler Group said it lost 759 vehicles. General Motors has not yet released an estimate of damaged vehicles -- the only major automaker not to do so after the storm made landfall in New Jersey two weeks ago.
GM said last week it lost a number of new Chevrolet Spark subcompact sedans at a port, but did not disclose how many.
Many dealers who recall the struggles to recover after natural disasters in the past have donated to those on the East Coast hit by Sandy.
Four Ford dealers in the Hattiesburg, Miss., area filled a semitrailer with canned goods, diapers, personal-care items, batteries and bottled water to send to Dana Ford Lincoln in Staten Island, N.Y. The goods will go to residents of the community in need, using the dealership as a distribution center.
The effort was organized by Jimmy Walker, president of Laurel Ford-Lincoln in Laurel, Miss., who saw news coverage of the storm and recalled how difficult it was to get relief after Hurricane Katrina hit the area in 2005.
Tracy Beck, a South Dakota Chevrolet and Cadillac dealer, donated $2,500 to the National Automobile Dealers Charitable Foundation emergency relief fund to help dealership employees affected by Sandy through his business.
Dealers can apply to the fund on behalf of their employees after natural disasters.
In 2011, four of Beck's employees received a total of $4,250 from the fund to help repair their homes and property after the Missouri River flood hit the area.
There was no major damage to the dealership, but employees' homes and property needed repair.
When Beck heard of the dealership employees hit by Sandy, he wanted to return the favor.
"What comes around goes around," he said. "It's a great way for dealers to help out other employees."
$1.3 million more
The fund has pledged more than $1.3 million since Sandy struck. Of that, $1 million was donated by the National Automobile Dealers Association, and $315,000 from state and metro dealer associations, including $250,000 from the Greater New York Automobile Dealers Association. This adds to the $112,000 that was already in the fund.
So far, 32 East Coast dealership employees have received $30,750 from the fund. NADA is still accepting applications as dealers to assess the damage.
After Hurricane Katrina, the relief fund gave nearly $3.5 million to 5,600 dealership employees. In 2008, after hurricanes Ike and Gustav, the fund gave $570,000 to 1,000 dealership employees. After those storms, requests for assistance came in over six months, said David Hyatt, NADA's vice president of public affairs.