In its efforts to identify as many of the damaged vehicles as possible, the National Insurance Crime Bureau has estimated that 230,000 insurance claims should be expected for vehicle damage in the areas affected by Sandy.

“New York City Police and the other law enforcement agencies around the area were understandably focusing on other emergencies and disaster efforts initially,” said Thomas Lohmann, NICB New York Region operations director. “Now they have begun to address the issue of dealing with thousands of flooded and damaged vehicles, and they are doing an outstanding job of getting these vehicles towed to holding areas where they can be identified and accounted for prior to being scrapped. They are also going after towing companies that have taken cars off the street without permission, and are submitting outrageous towing and storage bills to insurance companies. Some may be holding the vehicles in an attempt to increase storage fees, or actually claim title to the vehicle after it sits at their facility for an extended time.”

According to a release from the NICB, “many of those vehicles were flooded and are being towed to holding areas where they will be loaded on car haulers and taken to facilities to be crushed.” The firm also noted holding areas that had been visited, where before Sandy thousands of new vehicles were awaiting delivery to dealerships but nearly all of them were flooded and damaged beyond repair.

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