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Car Repair Shops, Towing Services Benefit From Late Season Snowfall

Fairbanks, AK - More than five inches of snow earlier this week sent a number of vehicles off the road during the morning commute in Fairbanks.  While area residents may not be smiling about the prolonged winter, a few local businesses are thanking the weather gods.

On Wednesday morning, a ten minute commute to work, turned into a 30 minute slog over slick ice through blowing snow.  Cars crept at a snail’s pace past vehicles, buried deep in the snowy ditch. Tow trucks were on the scene for a couple of those accidents. “We opened at seven and we’re on call number 16 already,” said Christopher Wood at 10 am Wednesday morning.  He drives a tow truck for Ron’s Towing Company in Fairbanks.  “I’m actually filing up a truck right now, getting ready to go out to Sheep Creek Road to pull somebody out of their driveway," he said.  "Another truck of ours is out pulling somebody off the highway..  It happens, it gets slick and people don’t pay attention.”  Despite a small pick-up in business because of late season snow this week, Wood says has been busier. “Our best time of the year is when it’s 50 or 60 below and none of the cars want to start.”

Over at College Collision, the vehicle repair business is also doing well.  “Yeah, definitely…” laughed General Manager Ed Diez.  “The business here basically runs on other people’s misfortune," he admits.  " You know, fender benders, people sliding here and there.  They gotta get their cars fixed and they come here.”  Diez is seeing lots of front end damage including bumpers and headlights.  He says repairs like that generally cost about $2400 dollars.  That’s why the weather hasn’t really gotten him down. “Well, I was hoping for spring, so I could start working on my summer projects," he says, "but, with the snow, it’s job security!”   Alaska State Troopers say at least 17 cars were involved in accidents they responded to on Wednesday morning.  Because snow is wet and heavy, they’re asking drivers to slow down, and drive with caution.