News: Consolidator Report
Keenan VP and COO Michael LeVasseur announced the outcome of the National Auto Body Council’s (NABC) First Responder Emergency Extrication training hosted by Keenan Auto Body recently.
First responders such as firemen require the most current vehicle information to be effective and save lives at the scene of an accident and they were given the technical training at two of Keenan Auto Body’s state of the art facilities in Middletown, Del. and Edgemont, Pa. The program acronym, “F.R.E.E.” helps keep first responders up to date, which is more important than ever given the rapid onslaught of advancements in vehicle design such as high-strength steels, advanced restraint systems, and multiple air bags. The growing popularity of high-voltage hybrid vehicles also makes a class like this a necessity.
“Seven fire companies from over six counties and two states attended the two days of training," said Craig Camacho, Keenan Auto Body’s director of marketing.
“There were many generous organizations that made these two events possible," Camacho added. “We appreciate Kent Automotive for sponsoring the trainer, Toby Chess, and both State Farm Insurance Co. and 1-800 Charity Cars for donating the nine vehicles used in the two days of demonstration training. Enterprise Rent-a-Car generously sponsored the two catered dinners and D&H Towing provided the transportation getting half of the vehicles from Pa to and from Delaware.”
I-CAR trainer and industry expert Toby Chess gave an hour-long audio/visual demonstration before taking the class outside for some hands-on cutting exercises. Holmatro, an international rescue equipment manufacturer, was present displaying key products used to increase the speed at which occupants can be removed safely from damaged vehicles.
Former fire chief and 55-year veteran with the Lansdowne Fire Company, Paul Wentzel, attended both of Keenan’s training events.
“The clock starts ticking the moment first responders get on the scene of an accident, and speed and knowledge are needed to safely extract occupants in a life and death situation,” he said. "Unfortunately, they don’t get the much needed training on newer technology like the vehicles that Keenan has provided through their insurance relations and the firemen I spoke to were asking if this type of training would be available in the future.”
Keenan plans on hosting future F.R.E.E. events at its other seven locations on an annual basis.
Keenan Auto Body, Inc. owns and operates nine state of the art collision repair centers throughout Philadelphia, Delaware, Montgomery counties, and Middletown Del.