Auto Service World
Feature   June 1, 2002   by Auto Service World

Bodyshop News: Collision Forum Hits Industry Issues

The Canadian Collision Industry Forum (CCIF) received high praise from an impressive source.

Scott Biggs, well-known PBE guru and an active participant in the United States Collision Industry Council (CIC), said he’s impressed with the progress, attendance and spirit of CCIF–now in its third year.

“The timing of the CCIF couldn’t be better,” Biggs said. “This forum is moving the industry forward. Even the CIC wasn’t this well supported by year three.”

The CCIF quarterly meeting–held for the first time in conjunction with the Canadian International Automotive Show in Toronto in May–offered a series of industry representatives reporting on the forum’s progress, then inviting participant involvement.

Colleen McKenzie, a member of CCIF’s Aftermarket Parts Committee, presented the results of a parts survey conducted since February’s Saskatoon meeting. Of the 281 collision repair respondents, 269 indicate that they use aftermarket non-OEM parts under the influence of their insurance partners. And while this isn’t a problem–many aftermarket manufacturers offer quality products–174 respondents believe their insurer partners do not have enough information available to them to determine which parts are of the highest quality and which are the most efficient. An equal number of respondents believe that their own shops do not have enough information to make fully informed decisions.

Still, 205 surveyed are willing to work with their aftermarket providers to create better documentation surrounding quality control of parts. “This result indicates there is an untapped well of energy for wholesalers to use to determine the good and bad products,” said McKenzie. “Now the ball is in the court of the wholesalers to create the mechanisms.”

John Norris, chair of the Government & Regulatory Committee, reported on the impressive array of work that industry associations are conducting with government on behalf of collision repairers. With provincial governments turning greater attention to environmental violators, Norris was pleased to report they are putting equal measures into helping businesses become and remain compliant. But with mandatory reporting for shop emissions already in Ontario and federal reporting expected, Norris warned that shops are going to have to watch their environmental conditions carefully.

The Ontario environmental SWAT Team has already begun random spot checks of collision repair facilities, he says. “It’s expected that the inspectors will find some sort of violation in 95% of facilities.”

PPG Partners with Mohawk College

The Automotive Refinish Group of PPG Canada, Inc. has announced a partnership with Mohawk Community College, Motive Power Division, in Stoney Creek, Ont.

The agreement sees PPG supplying the college with the latest high-tech equipment, paint systems and supplies.

Among the items supplied are a complete inventory of Global Refinish System products, the Touch-Mix system, a state-of-the-art computerized paint mixing system, and the Access Color formula retrieval system, which provides color formula retrieval, paint formulations by the ounce, job costing, inventory control, product bulletins and other important information.

“PPG is proud to help support the Mohawk College Auto Body program in an attempt to further the expertise of technicians in the collision center field and attract top quality entry level candidates to the industry,” said Celyne Benitah, marketing manager for PPG Canada.

“With constant changes in technology and the introduction of more and more sophisticated equipment and application techniques, training in the automotive refinish industry is more essential than ever.”

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