On Nov. 12, the Houston Auto Body Association (HABA) hosted a Fall Conference at the Wyndham West Energy Corridor in West Houston, TX, featuring presentations by Mike Anderson, Tim Ronak and Larry Cernosek.

The meeting’s focus was on prioritizing safety.

According to HABA President John Kopriva, “It went really, really well. Although the rain and sleet prevented some folks from coming, we still had over 100 attendees, and the venue was perfect. The whole event was excellent.”

Todd Tracy provided the Seebachan crash car involved with the John Eagle Collision decision made in October 2017 and the aftermarket crash car that was repaired by Burl Richards, president of the Auto Body Association of Texas.

Both vehicles were on display in the parking spaces directly outside of the ballroom where the seminars were held.

“Those parking spaces belong to AVIS Budget Rent-A-Car, but they made them available to us so meeting participants could look at the car. The Seebachans’ car was so badly damaged that you couldn’t even determine the make or model of the car. I don’t see how anyone could have survived that,” Kopriva said.

The meeting began at 9 a.m. with HABA recognizing the veterans in attendance in honor of Veterans Day. Acting as emcee for the event, Collision Advice’s Mike Anderson explained that the purpose of the meeting was to stress safety over profitability.

“Safety is HABA’s goal and main talking point for 2019,” Kopriva shared.

Anderson began his presentation by detailing how shops can better identify and document everything necessary to perform a safe and reliable repair. He also shared statistics about where he believes the industry will be in the future. He encouraged everyone to participate in his “Who Pays for What?” survey and challenged HABA to increase its participation. HABA accepted the challenge to have 50 shops participate in the current survey.