Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Friday, Sep 06, 2002
New Products & Services
TVS Care to the `rescue'
CHENNAI, Sept. 5
PICTURE this situation: it's late on a Sunday evening and you are driving to Chennai after a fun-filled weekend in Pondicherry when your car breaks down.
There's not a soul in sight and you have virtually no chance of finding a mechanic at that hour.
For motorists in Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry, nightmares such as this may soon be a thing of the past once TVS Care, a division of the Madurai-based TVS & Sons, rolls out its Emergency Roadside Assistance programme. The company is testing this venture in Chennai and is expected to commercially launch the service by the end of the year.
According to a brochure distributed by the company at several petrol stations in Chennai, motorists in distress can call the company's 24-hour help lines for assistance. However, the brochure says that motorists must first register themselves with the company registration is free at the moment, but sources indicate that the company will charge a membership fee of around Rs 1,000 once the service is officially launched. In addition, the company will also charge a fee for each service performed, the sources add.
On offer is a range of services for motorists in distress, ranging from simple repairs to tow operations. In the case of simple mechanical or electrical faults, the company's service personnel will perform immediate repairs to make the car roadworthy again. And if the problem cannot be fixed on the spot, TVS Care will tow the vehicle to a workshop of the owner's choice.
Similarly, if the repairs are likely to take some time, and the motorists wish to continue on their journey, the company will help arrange a taxi for them.
In the case of an accident, TVS Care will arrange for tow vehicles to transport the wrecked car to a garage of the owner's choice. In addition, the company will also help arrange for emergency roadside medical care, the brochure declares.
According to sources, the company will also help arrange for lawyers who will assist motorists with the legal and procedural fallout of an accident such as coordinating with the police.
According to the brochure, the company's crews will take between 10 and 45 minutes to respond to calls for assistance with city limits, while the corresponding figure for calls from state and national highways will be between 10 minutes and one hour.
Calls for assistance from other areas will be responded to in a maximum of 90 minutes, the brochure adds.
TVS officials, when contacted in Madurai, said that the company was validating and testing the service and would launch it commercially soon.
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