Vauxhall and Ford and other companies have announced new measures to help keep NHS staff and other key workers mobile during the current national lockdown.
Vauxhall is making its roadside assistance breakdown service free to all Vauxhall-driving NHS staff while Ford is offering them priority access to its mobile service operation.
Vauxhall’s Roadside Assistance is usually only available to buyers of new Vauxhalls but will be offered to all NHS staff who own a Vauxhall, no matter its age, mileage or where it has been serviced/maintained.
“Vauxhall is committed to providing continued support to essential services and key workers, many of whom drive Vauxhalls, during this time,” said Stephen Norman, Vauxhall’s managing director. “Keeping our NHS colleagues mobile is vital, and will hopefully offer some reassurance to them while they go about their business.”
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The service applies to drivers at home and at the roadside. In the first instance, technicians will attempt to repair the car but if that is not possible, the vehicle will be recovered to a Vauxhall authorised repairer or independent trader within a 10-mile radius, and a taxi provided for its driver and passenger(s) to a single destination within a 20-mile radius.
The free access applies to roadside assistance and recovery but the cost of any parts or specialist services required to complete a vehicle repair remain the customer’s responsibility.
To make use of the service, all NHS staff need do is call 0800 197 2049 and quote "NHS key worker". They will then be asked for the model of Vauxhall, its registration, exact location and the cause of the breakdown (if known).
At the same time, TrustFord, the Ford-owned dealer and servicing network is offering priority service to NHS staff and other essential workers from its mobile servicing operation.
The company’s mobile servicing vehicles, normally used to support large fleet needs, have been switched to supporting NHS, frontline and essential workers struggling to reach their local Ford site.
After starting at selected sites in in England and Northern Ireland, the company’s fleet of mobile vans can now reach essential frontline and individual needs from hubs in Kent, Dagenham, Heathrow, Bristol, Birmingham, Manchester, Glasgow, Yorkshire and Northern Ireland.
The company is also using selected Parts Plus hubs to offer free disposable seat covers to NHS community nursing units to help keep their staff safe.
TrustFord’s chairman and CEO, Stuart Foulds, said: "Our fleet team is fast-tracking essential vehicle orders and aftersales colleagues have been actively supporting customers on site to keep key workers on the road since the crisis started. It seemed logical to also mobilise our servicing units to reach those who cannot easily visit a site.
"The idea to give away free disposable seat covers came through an appeal my wife spotted and I was delighted that our Parts Plus team was able to source some to give away. We will continue to support and look for ways to support those in essential roles at this critical time.”
NHS staff and those listed by the Government as essential workers who would like to know more about the mobile servicing units can contact the booking team on 0330 159 7862 or visit www.trustford.co.uk/mobile-servicing
Anyone connected to NHS community nursing interested in the free disposable seat covers should contact one of the participating Parts Plus sites in Belfast, Bristol, Glasgow, Normanton, Tamworth, Thurrock or Warrington for advice on how to collect directly or through TrustFord’s Parts Plus wider network. Contact details for participating sites can be found on www.partsplusuk.com
Groupe PSE has also announced that the Roadside Assistance programe is now extended for the duration of the virus outbreak to all NHS workers who drive a Peugeot, Citroën, DS Automobiles or Vauxhall vechicle, and who do not already have any mechanical breakdown cover.
This program was previously only available to customers who had purchased a new Peugeot, Citroën or Vauxhall for 12 months, three years for DS, from the date of first registration. This extension is now offered to those regardless of vehicle age, mileage or if the vehicle has previously been maintained outside of the Peugeot, Citroën, DS Automobiles or Vauxhall Authorised Repairer network.
To make use of the Goupe PSA Roadside Assistance, all NHS staff need to do is call the following numbers and quote the phrase "NHS Key Worker":
- Peugot Roadside Assistance: 0800 197 2045- Citroën Roadside Assistance: 0800 197 2046- DS Automobiles Roadside Assistance: 0800 24 24 07 07- Vauxhall Roadside Assistance: 0800 197 3049
Toyota and Lexus have also announced free roadside assistance cover for key workers in the UK.
From 3 April, Toyota and Lexus are now extending the full benefits of their roadside assistance to cover all key workers who own a Toyota or Lexus. The cover is available regardless of whether motorists previously had Toyota Roadside Assistance or Lexus Roadside Assistance membership.
The free cover is being introduced as an open-ended benefit, available under further notice, for all Toyota and Lexus vehicles - regardless of age.
To access this assistance, the vehicle driver should call:
- Toyota: 0800 246824- Lexus: 0800 246866
The team member who answers will make a verbal confirmation of the callers key worker status to ensure the appropriate assistance is provided.
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