Recovering From a Hail of a Storm

A car dealership in Montour County is now having a “Hail Sale!” Last month huge hail stones damaged cars, homes,and even medical helicopters. Now two weeks later people are still picking up the pieces.

Geisinger Health System officials say their life flight helicopters make around 2,500 flights per year, so when an aircraft is out of service, it is greatly missed. But after a massive hail storm almost two weeks ago near Danville, three helicopters; two active, and the other a spare, were damaged, knocking them all out of service.

“The thunderstorm came up quickly where we could not move the aircraft safely and there were aircraft in the hangar so we had no options,” Jerry Splitt said.

Life Flight Program Manager Jerry Splitt says Geisinger runs five helicopters everyday. Splitt says crews worked around the clock to replace blades on two of damaged ones, and one of those helicopters went back into service earlier this week.

“We certainly were impacted significantly at first but the maintenance team and the program rallied, did everything they needed to do to get the aircraft back up,” Splitt said.

Almost two weeks after the hail storm, damage can still be seen on people’s houses. Roofs are still being fixed. It’s not just helicopters and houses affected by the hail storm. Every single vehicle at this dealership near Danville was damaged during the storm. That’s 265 vehicles.

“We did lose a total of seven cars that were totaled out because of the damage and then the other ones are in various amounts, depending on where they were sitting and the angle the were sitting,” Bill Resides said.

Fairfield Chrysler Dodge Jeep of Danville is now having a “Hail Sale”, offering those damaged vehicles, as is, at discounted prices. “So now we can offer to the public cars at a little bit of a discounted price, basically to cover the damage on the cars,” Resides said.

The dealership also recently got some more vehicles in stock, so now there are around 40 cars on the lot, complete with smiley faces that were not damaged by hail. The sales manager for Fairfield Chrystler Dodge Jeep of Danville says customers can either take the damaged vehicle “as is” at a discounted rate, or the dealership will fix it up and work out a price with the customer.


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