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Valley Man Claims Pizza Delivery Car Sign Damaged His Car

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LA FERIA – A La Feria man said he’s living with a car damaged by a pizza delivery sign. He said he has been waiting for close to a month for its repairs to be paid for.

Alvin J. Fogle moved to the Rio Grande Valley from Maryland in April. The lawn irrigation worker said he needs his 2016 Toyota Scion to get from his home in La Feria to his job in Harlingen.

He said he also needs it to make money for his company.

"I play a crucial role in this business. If I can't drive and do new estimates for new clients, I hurt my boss," he said.

Fogle claims his car was damaged by a pizza delivery driver on Expressway 83 heading toward Harlingen in early July.

"His sign flew off the top of his roof. He failed to secure his load before he left and it just went straight into my bumper. I had no time to react, turn left or right," he said.

Fogle said the black cover underneath the hood of his car was ripped open, the bumper was ripped out of its brackets and the alignment was knocked off. He called the driver's insurer a few days after the accident and waited to hear back.

"Nine days later, he calls me and says the claim is denied because he is not covered while he is working," he added.

Fogle said he tried to have the insurer for Papa John's, the driver's company, pay for the damages. The claim was denied.

Despite having called Papa John's corporate number at least 15 times, he still has no answers about how the damages will be paid for.

CHANNEL FIVE NEWS went directly to the Papa John's shop in Harlingen where the driver worked. The store manager told us he cannot comment on the issue because it’s still an open case.

Department of Public Safety Sgt. Maria Montalvo said it is best for drivers to stay two to three car lengths from the car in front of them to avoid these incidents. She said, if you can, move to another lane when debris falls from a car in front of you.

Fogle told us he received an estimate from a local mechanic who said the car had $1,575 in damages. He said he will be happy if the Papa John's corporate team will just pay for the damage to his car.

A Texas Department of Insurance spokesman said there are certain insurance exclusions for businesses. Jerry Hagins of TDI explained it is common for a personally-owned car to be excluded from insurance coverage if it is being used to transport goods or persons for a fee.

He said a Texas resident can file a complaint against a company driver on the Texas Department of Insurance's web page

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