AGRR Magazine

First CAP Event Takes Place Today in Rochester, Minn.

by Penny Stacey

Nearly one hundred insurance agents came together in Rochester, Minn., this morning for a course in auto glass safety, presented as a joint effort by the Auto Glass Replacement Safety Standard Council (AGRSS) and the Minnesota Glass Dealers Association (MGDA). This is the first in a series of Consumer Awareness Programs (CAP) AGRSS plans to conduct.

Mike Schmaltz, executive director of the MGDA, opened the day-long event; this morning's session was focused on educating insurance agents and provided them with a continuing education course credit. This afternoon local businesses from Rochester will receive a similar education.

"We promote consumer awareness, and it is in keeping with that that we have joined AGRSS in putting together this program," Schmaltz said. "We share safe installations as our primary goal."

Carl Tompkins, western sales manager for Sika Corp. and chair of the AGRSS credentialing committee, then took the podium to share several tips with agents on making certain their policyholders are receiving safe installations.

First, he advised them to make sure that the glass shops in their areas (and those their policyholders wish to use) employ certified technicians.

"... [U]se shops that can show you in writing that their techs are trained and certified," Tompkins said.

Next, he advised agents to make certain glass shops are conducting pre-inspections of the vehicles on which they work.

"If there's anything wrong with the car, the insurance industry and AGRSS want that glass shop to tell the customer about it," he added.

Tompkins also advised agents to ensure shops are instructing customers on safe drive-away times (noting in writing what the safe drive-away time should be) and that they inspect the vehicles post-installation as well.

Jon Fransway, brother of Jeanne Fransway, who passed away in 1999 after the windshield of the car she was driving in wasn't properly secured, also spoke. Jon works as a State Farm agent in Minnesota and shared his story with attendees.

"It's not the people who are here today that I'm worried about-it's the people who aren't here," he said. "We really need to make a difference and we need to endorse things that make a difference."

This afternoon, several demonstrations are scheduled, including a rollover demonstration by the Minnesota State Police and an airbag demonstration by Mitch Becker of ABRA Auto Body & Glass.

Penny Stacey is editor of glassBYTEs.comô/AGRR magazine.

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