BUYER BEWARE: How to avoid buying a flooded vehicle

BUYER BEWARE: How to avoid buying a flooded vehicle

(KFVS) - The National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) is warning the nation's consumers that vehicles flooded by Hurricane Harvey may soon be appearing for sale around the nation.

NICB works with its member companies, law enforcement, and auto auction companies after disasters to identify vehicles that have had an insurance claim filed and to process them for sale.

All of the cars that are deemed to be a total loss will be retitled with the Department of Motor Vehicles and the new title will indicate the fact that the vehicle has been damaged by flood water. Most of the vehicles are sold to parts companies who will dismantle them and re-sell usable parts that were not damaged by the flooding.

The Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) is also entered into the NICB's VINCheck and the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System database.

That allows car buyers to see if a vehicle has ever been declared a "salvage" or a total loss. VINCheck is a free public service.

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