South Dakota’s Attorney General Larry Long is warning residents to be cautious when considering the purchase of a used car these days.
That’s because vehicles damaged during the 2005 hurricane season might be making their way to the South Dakota market, he said.
“Many of these vehicles may be repaired cosmetically and on the surface do not look like water-damaged vehicles,” Long said in a release. “The consumer is at risk of costly repairs, or even worse, dangerous malfunctions of the brakes, computer systems or more.”
He said the National Insurance Crime Bureau provides an easy way to check the vehicle identification number to see if a vehicle has been affected by the hurricanes.
People can log on to the NICB Web site and enter the identification number to see if it is on the registry. If a vehicle is on the list, most consumers should avoid buying it, Long said.
If it’s not on the list, it’s still best to do further research on the vehicle’s history, he said.
The attorney general said potential buyers should ask the dealer or owner to show the title, which will provide the issue date and indicate how long the seller has owned the vehicle.
Source: National Insurance Crime Bureau
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