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Prince Rupert without ICBC collision service centre since December

Prince Rupert residents now have to travel to Terrace to be serviced

Prince Rupert residents have been without an ICBC auto collision facility since December 2023, and there is little prospect for a new one soon.

Joe’s Auto Repair shop was the only place in town for Prince Rupert residents to have their vehicles serviced following an ICBC claim. Residents now have to drive one-and-a-half hours to the nearest ICBC service hub in Terrace.

“We are doing everything we can to expedite this process, but for now, customers in Prince Rupert who choose to repair their vehicle through an ICBC Repair Network collision facility need to travel to Terrace,” said ICBC media relations officer Lauren Champagne in an emailed statement.

There are still two auto body shops left in Prince Rupert, though they are not part of the ICBC repair network. Champagne said Prince Rupert residents can be reimbursed by the auto insurance organization if they choose to go to another repair shop.

“Customers may also use collision repair facilities that are not part of ICBC’s Repair Network, however, they will be required to pay upfront and seek reimbursement from ICBC,” she said. “We are actively supporting customers who may choose this option given the circumstances in Prince Rupert.”

Prince Rupert city councillor Gurvinder Randhawa raised the issue during a city hall meeting on Dec. 13, expressing his concern for the lack of services in the city. The city confirmed it would send a letter to ICBC enquiring about the lack of service in the Rupert.

Prince Rupert is not alone in its struggles, with auto body shops facing challenges across the province, according to Champagne. She added that modern vehicles and their complex systems mean repair shops have had difficulty fixing them.

Numerous incentives and efforts are being made by the province and ICBC to attract newcomers to the industry, said Champagne. These include subsidized training and education for those entering the industry.

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About the Author: Seth Forward, Local Journalism Initiative

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