Just shy of 8:30 this morning, I heard the Pepsi truck driving down my street then a BOOM.
I ran out and, sure enough, it had struck my truck and punched a hole in one of my tires. Despite multiple neighbours coming out and yelling at the truck to stop, it got to the corner, then hit a hard turn onto 21 and raced to 60, skipping its usual stops. There’s no way they didn’t know they did something bad.
I went to the expat group I trust for advice — lots of long-timers here who live in the real world as well as Mexicans so I knew I’d get advice for how such things are handled by locals. I had one who did ask if a burst tire was worth a driver losing his job at Christmas, but she was drowned out by the advice to call 911 and request police. This was a hit and run, plain and simple, and the value of the damage was immaterial.
I felt like I lost all my Spanish when the 911 operator picked up, but he repeated everything back to me and understood me perfectly. He promised to send police but, as expected, police never turned up. Even if they had, to make an official-official claim, a denuncia, you have to go in person to an agency called the Fiscalía, which handles the actual investigations.
I then called my insurance company and was shocked that they had no one who spoke English who could help me since I have “Gringo insurance.” I knew I only had third-party liability, but I thought they might be able to liaise with Pepsi’s insurance. Nope, there was nothing they could do for me (the expected answer).
I then called Pepsi’s local office and the person who picked up the phone took my info and said someone would call me back.
They did call me back some time later and even found someone who speaks English at about the level I speak Spanish. So we had a Spanglish conversation. It was clear Pepsi was giving me the brush-off as they said they could not do anything since I did not have the truck license plate number. This was a regularly scheduled truck on a regular route so there’s no way they didn’t know which truck and which driver was involved. I got a name and number to call back the next time I saw the truck. *insert shrug emoji!*
Sometime after this, I got hold of my mechanic and he said he’d have a look. He was quite peeved on my behalf, saying the Pepsi driver has caused damage to others before and that, really, he’d deserve my filing a denuncia. He later confirmed that there was no other damage and that he will find me a cheap used tire. So that’s as far as I was willing to take things seeing as I’d lost half a day of work and a used tire won’t break the bank.
The day was not a write-off, however, as I got in some good practice for the day I have a life or death emergency. 🙂 I’m glad I finally have a support network here that can show me how things are done here, not how they “should” be done.