U-Haul Complaint - Bad trucks
SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA -- Beware of Renting from U-Haul
My name is Gerald Arzdorf. My wife is Sandra Gillette. My sister-in-law is Carol Gillette
The next three letters are from me, my sister-in-law, and my wife to The U-haul Corp.
Please read them and then think about what happened to us when you decide to rent
a truck from U-Haul.
After receiving these letters, U-haul offered me $100. This was to cover my motel,
having the cat put to sleep, and any discomfort I may have experienced.
I refused their offer of a settlement and do not expect any future offer.
My sister-in-law was offered $250. She also refused to settle.
Their insurance adjuster called both of us liars, tried to intimidate us, and
was very rude to my sister-in-law.
We want to inform the public how U-Haul does business.
Contract # 555 5162
Truck # DC 4531 X
Repair # 1251824
On or about July 7 I, Gerald Arzdorf, called 1-800-gouhaul, and spoke with "Jamie" to make a reservation for July 12, 2003, for a one way truck and car carrier from Sacramento, CA to Wickenburg, AZ for my sister-in-law, Carol Gillette.
She went to El Camino Moving Center (706-061) on July 9 to verify the reservation. She ask not to be given a diesel truck and said she would pick it up about noon on the 12th.
She received a diesel truck and was told that was all they had left so she loaded on Sat. and left Sun. AM.
My wife and I were to meet Ms Gillette in Needles, CA and I would drive the truck on to Wickenburg.
The truck overheated between Barstow and Needles, CA. The air temperature was about 120 F. She nursed the truck to Needles and was in very poor physical condition when she arrived. My wife took her home to Wickenburg and I stayed with the truck.
I called U-haul and was told to put in some water and see if it would cool down. It ran cool so I put $40 worth of fuel in the truck. When I started to leave town the gauge showed maximum hot. I called again for repair and talked to three persons and was on hold for 30 minutes in the 120F heat. "JJ" called back and told me the mechanic would be there in 90 minutes. With nowhere to go I waited, in the heat, for the mechanic. He arrived on time, 9:00 PM, and thought he had fixed the problem. As I prepared to leave town the mechanic stopped me because the lights were not working right. He thought he had them fixed and I left town. About three miles south of town the lights went off. I returned to town using the hazard lights and caught the mechanic just before he left. He worked a little longer and said he could not fix them at that time. He stated I could drive the truck home in the morning and he would follow me to a motel, that U-haul would pay for, so the lights would not be a problem.
At the motel we saw that the radiator was losing all of it's fluid so he said U-haul would tow it to Wickenburg in the morning. After the mechanic left I checked into the Overland Inn motel. It is the worst place I have ever had to pay to spend a night. I had no choice but to stay. The truck was not in any shape to be moved very far and I had just spent four hours in 120 degree heat and was very tired and sick.
In the morning the tow truck arrived and we had an uneventful trip to Wickenburg.
The truck should never have been given to Ms Gillette. The mechanic, Kevin, the tow truck driver, Rob, and the agent in Wickenburg all said the truck was in bad shape and should not have been rented for the highway. The truck is a "X" truck and is for local rental only. The truck was very dirty.
I believe Ms Gillette was taken advantage of in Sacramento because she is a woman. I would never had accepted the truck.
Sacramento Agent: El Camino Ave. Moving Center
1650 El Camino Ave.
Sacramento, CA 95815
Wickenburg Agent: Stotz Service Center
290 E. Wickenburg Way
Wickenburg, AZ 85390
The U-Haul mechanic was from Lake Havasu, AZ
The towing company was R/C towing from Kingman, AZ
1855 W. Wickenburg Way #29
Wickenburg, AZ 85390
Truck # DC 4531x
Contract #555 5162
Repair # 1251824
License # D V F 257 Alaska
On July 9th I visited the U-haul lot in Sacramento, CA to check on my reservation and have my car there for someone to see that the car would accommodate the trailer. At the time I asked the young girl who works there if she would show me the type of truck I was getting. She let me sit inside and check out the control panel and the air conditioning. I made it a point to tell her that I did not want a diesel truck. She showed me three trucks that were unleaded gas only, including the one I was sitting in, saying there should be no problem on Saturday July 12th when you come.
On July 12th when I came to pick up the truck and sign it out the man behind the desk told me I was getting a diesel truck that there were no other trucks available. The girl I spoke to on Wednesday was there and I explained to the man that I specifically told her I did not want a diesel truck. And I directed my attention directly to her about this conversation we had on Wednesday but she brushed me off with excuses. I had no choice but to sign out the truck against my better judgment. I was expected to be in Needles, Ca. By 3pm Sunday where my sister and her husband would be waiting for me.
When I went out to the truck two guys were hooking up the trailer to the truck. My comment to them was, please make sure everything is in good working order I’m not going around the corner I’m driving to Arizona . We got as far as my apartment when I noticed, since I was following, that the left hand signals were not working nor were the left hand brake lights on the truck or trailer. Being pressed for time we loaded the truck and had a friend of my daughters who’s a mechanic try to get them fixed before I left. Seven hours later with a packed truck and car on the trailer they still couldn’t get them working it was now ten p.m. and I had to leave by five am Sunday morning. I had no choice but to go as is. As I set out with my cat in her carrier on the front seat all was going ok till I stopped at a McDonalds before I hit Bakersfield, Ca.
When I got back in the truck it wouldn’t start. This scared me. I waited a short time and then it started. This was the beginning of a ten hour nightmare for me. Each time I had to gas up I had a scary and difficult time finding diesel fuel and maneuvering the truck and trailer into the station to the right pump. Before I got within fifty miles of needles I began to feel tremendous heat on my legs burning them so bad . I realized it was coming from the engine so I put the pillow from behind my back across my legs. I checked the panel gauges and noticed the temperature needle was so far passed the red line. I panicked especially knowing the outside temperature was at least 120 degrees and how was I going to cool the truck down I couldn’t pull over and wait. That wouldn’t be logical or safe I probably would have passed out just from the heat in the truck. And my cat would have died right there in front of my eyes. I did decide to pull over and use the emergency phone. As I stood there in the 120 degrees weather trying to convince the operator that I needed someone to call Denny’s in Needles where my sister and her husband were waiting. The operator began asking a bunch of ridiculous questions as I stood in this heat, then he put me on hold as I listened to some elevator music for as long as I could stand it. I began to feel my face burning and my body overheating I could not stand there any longer. I jumped back into the burning truck put on the air so I would not pass out and give my cat relief, I put the pillow across my legs, said a prayer that the Lord would get me to needles which was about 26 more miles, before either I would pass out or the truck would blowup. I drove at a speed of 30-35 miles as I continued to pray. When I reached Denny’s , I of course thanked God , for there was no way other then by Him I would have made it with the condition the truck was in. I grabbed my cat, who was panting and still in the cat carrier, and rushed into Denny’s. She and I were in a bad way and took a toll not just on me but on my sister and her husband who are senior citizens with health problems. And the story continues with their accounts. I was told later that it was a miracle I made it that far since it was an X truck which meant it was used only for local runs not long distance moving. The irresponsible actions on the part of the U-haul agent in Sacramento cause me serious physical and mental aguish that could have been fatal and I am still shaken to the point that I might never get in a truck again for a very long time. And I know it will be a long time getting over this .
All these facts are true and correct as they are still fresh in my mind. The date being July 21,2003.
Contract # 555 5162
Truck # DC 4531 X
Repair # 1251824
My name is Sandra Gillette Arzdorf. I am the sister of Carol Gillette who drove the U-Haul truck from Sacramento, CA to Needles, CA where my husband and I were waiting at Denny's resturant. She was supposed to meet us at 3:00 PM. It was hot even in the Denny's. By 4:00 PM I called my other sister, Margaret Benenati, to see if she had heard anything. She told me no. Carol has never driven a U-Haul and a car carrier. As more time went by, with no sign of her, I began to be very concerned and told my husband we should head her way, on interstate 40, and maybe see her.
When she arrived at the parking lot the sight of her was unbelieveable! She told me about calling for help and being put on hold in the 120 dregree heat. She drove the last 30 or 35 miles very slow hoping the truck would make it.
My husband and I have many serious medical problems and are on many medications. My husband was to drive the truck to Wickenburg and my sister and her cat came with me in our truck.
Thinking my husband would be home that night after contacting the U-Haul mechanic, we left for home. Turns out he had to wait three hours in 120 dregree heat making phone calls and waiting for the mechanic. As I stated, he is in poor health and did not bring any of his medication with him. He was forced to stay, with no dinner, in a flithy room with no medications. He called to say he had to wait until morning to be tow. He had to wait in the morning for one and a half hours for the truck to come from Kingman, AZ.
Mean while, by 10:00AM I was very nervous because he had now missed his morning medications too. My sister and I started out to see if we could see them coming. We were near Parker, AZ when we saw the tow truck and found a place to turn around. We returned to Wickenburg following them.
My sister and I had hardly any sleep and were in bad shape, not to mention my husband. We have been driving rental trucks for years and have never heard or seen of anything like this. It is unbelieveabla how my sister was taken advantage of because she is a woman.
This is Friday, July 18, 2003 and we are still trying to recover from this tragedy.