Thrifty Charges Man $30/Day For Stranded Car

When Claude Hite was evacuated from the Olympic National Park during a dangerous storm, he left his Thrifty rental car behind him.

Unable to retrieve it from the washed out forest, Claude is being charged $30 a day by Thrifty.

“Hite said park officials tried to intervene on his behalf, but Thrifty turned them down,” KOMOTV reports.

That’s what you call being stuck between a rock and an asshole. — BEN POPKEN

Stranded rental car costing man $30 a day [KOMOTV] (Thanks to Mike!)


Edit Your Comment

  1. Solo says:

    It’s Thrifty’s car that brought them where they were stranded in the first place, so they should sue Thrifty (?)

    But more seriously, isn’t this covered in the rental agreement? Car is unrecoverable: insurance will take care of it.

    It would be so much simpler if the car had burned to the ground…

  2. Pelagius says:

    If he’d only coughed up the measly $10 extra for that “useless” insurance…

  3. ColoradoShark says:

    Here’s another consumerist issue embedded in a quote from the original article:

    “If it takes a year to get the car out, which is Hite’s fear, one estimate puts the total cost to him at more than $3,000”.

    Isn’t $30 a day multiplied by 365 days in the year a lot more like $11,000? What kind of idiot estimated $3000?

  4. Magister says:

    I wonder why Trifty is the bad guy here? Some dude rents a car and doesn’t return it.

    Why is the dude considered the victim?

  5. bravo says:

    Magister, yeah and those idiots who live in New Orleans and got wiped out by Katrina are just stupid for living so close to the water. Why are they considered victims?

  6. Hawkins says:

    I hate the rental car man as much as the next guy, but what are they supposed to do?

    “Oh, you can’t bring the car back on the day that you were supposed to? Well, that’s OK, just bring it back as soon as you can. We’ll eat the costs.”

    The article doesn’t say whether the victim purchased the insurance or not. Presumably he did NOT. If not, then he’s acting as his own insurer, and has accepted the risks.

    If he has insurance through his credit card, then it’s a matter between the insurance carrier and the rental company.

  7. ckilgore says:

    Magister, “Trifty” is the bad guy because he CANNOT get the car, and the company is so thrown by logic that they refuse to even work with their customers in situations like that. It’s not just being an asshole – it’s bad customer service and bad PR.

  8. Triteon says:

    Taking Thrify’s side for a moment: where is Mr. Hite’s insurance company or CC company in this fight? No mention thus far. And from Thrify’s “General Policies” (a contract Hite surely read when he accepted liability for the vehicle):


    A. Loss or Damage to the THRIFTY vehicle: The renter and any additional drivers are absolutely liable for any loss or damage to the rental vehicle, even if someone else caused it or the cause is unknown, whether due to theft, fire, hail, flood, collision, vandalism, or any other cause, subject to limitations imposed by the law where the vehicle is rented. This liability will not exceed the full value of the vehicle, plus:

    Actual towing and storage charges;
    Loss of use;
    Diminution in value, regardless of whether the vehicle is repaired or not;
    All rental charges through the date you report the incident if not returnable or the return date, whichever is later;
    Any out-of-pocket expenses incurred by us as a result of the loss or damage to the vehicle;
    A reasonable administrative fee; and
    Pro-rata license plate fees, all as allowed by law.
    Taking Mr. Hite’s side: c’mon Thrifty, he’s not hiding anything. To the best of anyone’s knowledge the car has not been damaged or destroyed, it’s just stranded. Offer a reasonable settlement…if just to get this out of the press.

  9. Itch says:

    Well, after reading the article Thrifty is talking about trying to help “abit” by only charging 20 a day. Still alot, yeah, but it is showing that they are working with him. So the 3000 is probably an estamite based upon the Park’s timeline for repairing the road.

    As for a credit card insurance, they may have a loop hole for this. Hertz commented the other day when I had to rent that CC Companies often dont cover the days a car is out of commision just damages. So that will have to be something to look into.

    The article also said that the renter may sue the park for “waiting to long”. They are as much a victim of the weather as he is, it just comes across as vidictive (I got finacially hurt, some one else must too).

  10. gotbock says:

    My wife often rents from Thrifty because her company has a contract with them and she travels frequently. She’s found that being a “blue chip” member makes Thrifty much more agreable in working through problems she’s had with her rentals. It also helps to have a corporate contract on your side and to threaten to get that contract revoked if your problem isn’t dealt with to your satisfaction.

  11. cryrevolution says:

    this is coming from someone who works in insurance. claim it on your automobile insurance. you don’t need the extra insurance for the rental veh. see, this is something that is well known within the walls of the insurance business, but is rarely mentioned to its insured’s. any vehicle you drive is covered. period. if you take your sister’s or mother’s or whatever person’s vehicle ANYWHERE, and get into an accident (collision) or get stuck in a flood (comprehensive) YOU WILL BE COVERED. Granted, you’re premiums might just take a hit, but thats little compared to having your insurance carrier go to bat for you with thrifty and covering the damages. hope that helped.