At approximately 8:30 pm on May 11, 2010, Assistant Editor, Willie A. Openshaw and myself were driving back to Livingston from Moscow after covering a rollover accident that had just occurred on Jack Station Road. When we were just a couple of miles from Leggett, the Willster pulled off of Highway 59 to the shoulder and stopped. I was halfway asleep but snapped out of it and asked what the deal was. Willster said that he couldn't steer Big Red (Big Red is a 2005 Dodge Ram 2500 with a 5.9 liter Cummins Turbo Diesel). I told him to leave the engine running and let's switch places. I took the wheel and yes, it was very hard to steer, but I got back on 59 (south-bound) and we headed to Leggett. We drove a couple of miles and made it to the parking lot of that quick stop located at the corner of 942 West and US-59. We turned off the engine (engine was starting to get hot), popped the hood and observed that the belt that connects the fan, and various other important things had been thrown and was all bunched up in the pulleys. Even though Big Red is an '05, he's still covered under warranty by Bounds Autoplex in Livingston. We called the bounds Vehicle Recovery Specialist, one of Polk County's finest, Jim Harwood. Jim was glad to hear from us, and said he'd be right over. We waited for around 20 minutes and good 'ol Jim showed with one of his massive rollback wreckers (the Ugly Duck), and loaded Big Red up, strapped it down, and then we all 3 got in Jim's truck. Jim dropped us off at the PolkCountyToday.com branch office in Livingston and then took Big Red to Bounds Autoplex. I immediately went inside and got to work on the days news. Afterwards, my (now married) daughter (Precious Angel) came and picked up Willster and I and we stayed at her house for the evening. After a good night's rest, I went to see Greg Martin, Vehicle Service Manager at Bounds Autoplex. By the time I arrived, Greg already had the problem diagnosed. It was the water pump. The water pump went out and threw the belt. Greg was happy to inform me that Big Red was covered and they replaced the water pump, and paid for the towing services provided by Jim Harwood. By now I was driving my wife's old Mercedes Benz and had transportation, so I didn't need a loaner (although Bounds would've been happy to provide a loaner vehicle while Big Red was being repaired). By that afternoon Greg Martin called me to inform me that work was complete and now Big Red is back in service.
Conclusion: Folks, if you're going to buy a vehicle, it pays to deal with a reputable establishment like Bounds Autoplex. Big Red's water pump went out in the night, and by the next afternoon, was repaired and all I had to pay for was the belt itself. The water pump and labor was all covered by a nice warranty that I got when I purchased Big Red from Bounds Autoplex. Why drive to some far away dealer in Houston when you've got competitive prices right here in Livingston and service that is second to none? If I purchased Big Red from a dealer in Houston, there is no way I would've been back on the road in less than 24 hours (things would've taken much much longer). If you're looking for a new or pre-owned car or truck, drive in to Bounds Autoplex today and tell 'em Willie sent ya! -- Willie P. Openshaw, Editor, PolkCountyToday.com
Vehicle Recovery Specialist Jim Harwood loaded Big Red on his rollback wrecker, strapped it down, and took it to Bounds Autoplex in Livingston.
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