Attorney Todd Tracy Unveils Results of New Crash Test
September 19, 2018—Texas-based attorney Todd Tracy, known for his $42 million legal victory against John Eagle Collision in Dallas and his subsequent Honda Fit crash tests, has taken his fight against the use of unsafe aftermarket replacement parts to a new level.
On Sept. 15 during the 2018 Texas Auto Body Trade Show in Fort Worth, Tracy, the Auto Body Association of Texas (ABAT), the Houston Auto Body Association (HABA) and New Jersey-based shop owner Jerry McNee (Ultimate Collision Repair; Edison) unveiled the results of a new crash test of a 2010 Honda Fit that was repaired according to OEM procedures using OEM parts.
The test vehicle had never been in an accident but had various Honda OEM replacement parts installed at Burl's Collision Center in Henderson, Texas, by technician Donald "Trip" Springer. Tracy had the same parts replaced with OEM as the parts he had replaced with aftermarket (or, in his words, "imitation") versions in his previous crash testing.
The crash test results revealed that the genuine parts performed exactly as intended to ensure passenger safety, while the previously crashed aftermarket parts-installed vehicle produced results that Tracy called "total and massive destruction" in critical areas. For example, the driver left femur force on the aftermarket parts-repaired vehicle was 1700 N (newton) but only 397 N (newton) on the vehicle repaired with genuine Honda OEM parts - a "400 percent difference," Tracy said.
Results of the latest crash test are available here.
"The biggest takeaway of this presentation is that we're beginning to define what 'like kind and quality' means," said Burl Richards, ABAT president and Burl's Collision Center owner. "We now have scientific proof that shows vehicles are safer when they're repaired using OEM parts and OEM procedures. We made major frontal repairs to this vehicle, and its crashworthiness held up and was exactly the same as a new OEM car."
In addition to McNee, Burl's Collision Center and HABA, financial contributors to the latest crash test include Dominic and Mario Martino of Gold Coast Auto Body in Chicago and John Mosley of Clinton Body Shop in Mississippi. The support of these facilities shows that the push to bring scientific clarity to the aftermarket parts issue is a nationwide collaborative effort.
Prior to the OEM-specific repairs, the undamaged Honda Fit was thoroughly inspected, measured on a frame machine and pre-repair scanned to check for pre-existing codes. Once the work was completed, Burl's Collision Center performed a post-repair scan to ensure that no codes were generated during the repair process.