Believe it or Not – November 28, 2019

Intrepid Insurance Case
A B.C. man who suffered extensive vehicle brake damage after colliding with a moose in 2018 has won his year-long case against the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC).

Ronald Driedger was driving down a remote stretch of highway near Smithers, B.C. when he realized a moose was blocking the road ahead. He did what any driver would do⁠—slammed his brakes to the floor and hoped for the best.

While the moose ran off uninjured, Driedger’s 2008 Mazda 3 was left drivable, but with minor body damage. He acted accordingly and filed a claim with ICBC.

“Over the next two days, Driedger noticed his brakes were ‘soft,’” reads ICBC’s ruling. “He had to pump the brakes repeatedly to stop fully. When the vehicle was stopped but in gear, the brakes could not keep the car from creeping forward.”

Four days later, Driedger contacted the insurer to add brake repair to his existing claim. But ICBC fired back, saying he had no proof the damage was caused by anything other than normal wear and tear⁠—which is not covered.

An estimator said the most likely reason for the brake problems was that the master cylinder had failed; an ICBC employee told Driedger that master cylinders “rarely fail, even under abusive driving conditions.”

But when he took his case to another committee within the insurer, it said the issue was not with the master cylinder, but with a pre-existing issue meaning the brakes would have eventually failed under hard use—even if Driedger was unaware of it.

The ICBC denied his claim once again. Driedger took his claim to the CRT, which handles small claims cases.

ICBC asked for the claim to be dismissed, but the tribunal sided with Driedger.

The insurer was ordered to pay Driedger more than $1,900 in compensation⁠⁠—$1,700 to cover the brake repair, as well as additional reimbursement for interest and tribunal fees.

Fast and the Furriest
A viral video of a dog that took its owner’s car for an hour-long spin around a Florida neighbourhood has been making its rounds this week, triggering chuckles all across the internet.

When left alone inside the running vehicle, the large black dog somehow managed to pop the gearshift into reverse. As the car lazily spins around the cul-de-sac, the pup hangs out, peering out the windows at the crowd gathering on the sidewalk.

As the Mercury Sable sedan circles the street, it can be seen taking out garbage cans, recycling bins⁠⁠⁠—even a neighbour’s mailbox.

The canine joyride eventually came to an end when police were able to break into the car via its keypad⁠.

“We’re happy to report that the driver was unhurt,” said police.

The car’s human driver has promised to pay for the damaged mailbox.

Police Force
A woman in Nova Scotia awoke to a nightmare after a marked police car nearly crashed through her home on Monday morning.

Helen Chesson of Cape Breton, N.S. was awakened by an “awful bang” around 3 a.m. Monday morning. Curious, she went downstairs to locate the sound’s source and found that a police car had collided with her house, taking out a front window in the process.

“I got up and I said, ‘I better go down and check that out,’” Chesson told a local news source. “She hit the corner of my house. I came down and saw the coloured light flickering around the room and said, ‘Oh my God, it’s my house.’”

Police say the vehicle hydroplaned and rolled over into her yard, suffering extensive damage in the process. The driver was uninjured.

“As a senior on a fixed income, I hope the damage will be repaired soon,” said Chesson.

Cape Breton police confirmed they will replace Chesson’s window as soon as possible.

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