Victim of an accident on the highway on July 31 towards Narbonne (Aude), Frédéric Rodriguez thought that his Mercedes had only superficial damage. Six months later, he still hasn’t gotten his car back. Worse, neither the insurance nor the manufacturer have been able to provide him with a loan vehicle since. Story of a galley that drags on.
The accident seemed trivial. On July 31, 2022, Frédéric Rodriguez returns to Nîmes after a weekend spent at the Bayonne festivals. In the middle of the highway, the Gardois rolls on an axle lost by a Serbian truck.
The lights of his Mercedes light up immediately. “I stopped in a motorway rest area, he says. I could see that I was far from being the only accident victim. Several cars were literally gutted.” In total, about twenty motorists are affected.
“I have been announced a malus!”
Following the accident, Frédéric Rodriguez was quickly taken care of by a repairman. “He said to me: don’t worry, Vinci has all the contact details. We didn’t make any findings, we thought there would be no problem.”
But the next day, the galleys begin. Pacifica insurance cannot find the coordinates of the Serbian truck responsible for the accident.
“I contacted Vinci again, I was told that no contact details were communicated except in the case of legal action”, explains Frédéric Rodriguez. As she could not turn against anyone, the insurance announced a malus to me.
When contacted, Pacifica told us that it had made “various attempts, in particular with the motorway operating company and the judicial authorities, in order to collect the elements relating to the circumstances”.
“Unfortunately, no one wanted or was able to inform us, details the insurance. The only elements in our possession were the customer’s statement, the photo of the truck in question and the photo of another vehicle also damaged.”
After several months of research from the registrations of other vehicles involved in an accident that evening provided by Frédéric Rodriguez, Pacifica finally declared itself “able to officially release the responsibility of the insured in the occurrence of the accident”.
His car is transported to a body shop in Narbonne, approved by his insurer. Frédéric Rodriguez then hopes to be able to recover it quickly. “At the start, it didn’t seem too bad. But when they got the car together, they noticed that a very important cable was damaged.”
Four months waiting for delivery
“Luckily, a Mercedes garage was right next door, he says. When they saw the damage, they felt that they had to order a new cable to change it completely, otherwise there was a risk of complications. .”
A very rare operation according to the manufacturer we contacted. “This is a harness that electronically supplies the whole car, explains Mercedes France. To change it, you have to completely dismantle the vehicle. In general, you simply cut the damaged wires and resolder, which goes much more fast.”
Manufactured on demand, the piece costs 4,122 euros excluding tax. Ordered in mid-September, it cannot be delivered for four months. Frédéric Rodriguez finds himself helpless: “I was made to understand that this cable was specific to the chassis number of my car and its options. It is an almost unique part.”
“Insurance told me they could only loan me a car while mine was being repaired, not while waiting for the part,” he continues. The car having remained with the bodybuilder, Mercedes claims that it cannot provide him with a vehicle either.
“No one can do anything for me”
Since then, nothing has changed. “The four-month period has passed, I have followed up with everyone and I still have no news, laments the Gardois. No one can do anything for me.”
“In the meantime, my car is still in Narbonne, it is taking a discount and I continue to pay insurance costs, he laments. Fortunately, I manage to manage with my relatives to get me a vehicle. . If I had to rent one, the bill would have been even higher.”
Mercedes France, which was unable to communicate the name or origin of the subcontractor responsible for supplying the long-awaited harness, underlined that it had relaunched it following our call. “We asked for a prioritization of the file, that should speed things up”, simply indicated the manufacturer, without being able to be more precise on the delivery time.