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Automotive parts shortage looms

The New Zealand Collision Repair Association is predicting a shortage in parts due to regional suppliers in Australia, Asia and Europe being unable to supply by air and instead bringing them in by sea.

Spokesman Neil Pritchard said delays could extend to other parts of the automotive repair industry, including mechanical workshops.

PD Auto Services director Nick Johnstone, of Dunedin, agreed, and said he was worried shortages of parts, tyres in particular, could hit the industry in about a month.

‘‘At this stage we’re managing to get orders from Christchurch ... but I have heard tyre shortages are on the cards.

‘‘With other countries in and out of lockdown and restrictions on shipping here and overseas, we could be looking at some big delays.

‘‘In about a month the situation will be clearer, when everyone needs to place orders for parts, but I have heard of tyre shortages out of China.’’

He said the reported shortages in China could affect the availability of cheaper tyres in this country.

Mr Johnstone said he had had more work since entering Level 3 than in the past month; about 70% of customers needed a warrant of fitness or a service for their vehicle, and about 30% needed repairs.

Meeting Government sanitisation guidelines meant each job took about 20 minutes longer than usual.

City Mechanical Repairs manager Tony Crowther said he would not be surprised if there was a shortage of parts down the line.powered by Rubicon Project‘‘At this point we’ve got no issues, but I would say suppliers are at the moment reopening, trying to gauge their stock and get that out the door.

‘‘It’ll be interesting once that’s gone and once they need new supplies.’’

Mr Crowther said he was worried about whether customers had the money to spend on car repairs.

‘‘I have been surprised at the number of people in so far, but we’re just getting back into it, you just don’t know what

the future holds.

‘‘People might try to go longer without getting something fixed.’’

In Invercargill, Automotive Solutions foreman David Richardson said the workshop had not run into any supply problems so far.

‘‘We haven't really had any issues yet, but we probably aren't going to know until the time comes.’’

He said it would also depend on the type of parts.

John McKenzie, of John McKenzie Automotive in Invercargill, said he did not expect a shortage of parts.

Instead, he was focused on catching up on the time they could not work during Alert Level 4.

‘‘There's all this time we have to catch back for all our clients.

Otago Daily Times