Winter storm big business for body shops - FOX 26 News | MyFoxHouston

Winter storm big business for body shops

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HOUSTON (FOX 26) -

The sound of buffing and welding means the workers at Apollo Paint and Body in Southwest Houston are busy. 

"We've actually been swamped with calls," said shop foreman Gabriuel Giordano. 
He says it's actually about 3-times busier than normal after what many consider to be the worst winter ice storm Houston has seen in several years.

"A lot of the damage we're seeing today is front end and back end damage," said Giordano.
   
He showed us a black pick-up truck that lost control on the ice on the Southwest Freeway and slammed into a wall. 

"'What was going through your mind when this was happening?'  Please don't flip over," said the driver. 

"I was still doing like 50 mph going sideways, I kept thinking the car was gonna flip started going backwards and finally smashed into the wall and stopped."
   
It's the same story wrecker drivers like Joseph Daghor heard over and over all around the region. 

"The freeway was very bad, the ice," said Daghor. 

The Houston Fire Department responded to more than 500 incidents in just a 12-hour stretch between midnight and noon, making Daghor's job a lot more challenging. 

"We couldn't go to the freeways everything was closed down.  'You couldn't even get out there to pick people up, right?' No we couldn't do that," he said.

By Friday afternoon a steady stream of mashed and mangled metal did make its way to Apollo for repairs.

"Today we're dealing with more phone calls I imagine tomorrow we'll be swamped with people left and right whether its insurance, or a customer himself trying to fix something from minor to major," said Giordano. 

It's big business after a bad storm.  And a big lesson learned for those who survived it.  

"I should've stayed home, I should've stayed home," said the driver of the wrecked pick-up truck.

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