USA Today Claims Several Agencies Investigating Charges That Kelly Motorcycle Dealership Sold Unsafe Vehicles; Chattanooga Dealer Denies Allegations

Monday, October 29, 2012

A USA Today article claims that Chattanooga auto dealer Tim Kelly sold unsafe motorcycles at his Southern Honda Powersports.

Mr. Kelly, whose family has long been in the auto business here, denied the charges, terming them "utter balderdash."

He said, "Safety is our first priority."

The probes were apparently mainly instigated by a former Kelly employee, Ernest "Pug" Vickers. He was hired as a Kelly marketing consultant despite the fact that he and another man had been convicted on federal charges of misapplying the funds of the Carroll County Bank in Huntingdon, Tn., making false statements in connection with the bank's loans; making false entires in the bank's records and aiding and abetting in violation of 18 U.S.C. Secs. 656, 1014, 1005, 2.

Another Kelly employee took him to General Sessions Court over alleged threats, and dealer Kelly eventually fired him.

The article says the investigations are being carried out by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the U.S. Attorney's Office in Nashville and the Tennessee Attorney General's office.

It says the claims that the dealership sold "hundreds to thousands" of motorcycles that were under recall are being made not only by Vickers, but by other ex-employees.

David Ray Tyler, who worked at Southern Honda from mid-2006 to January 2008, claimed motorcycles were not properly assembled and that he signed safety forms though he was not certified to do so.   

Deano Swims and a former general manager gave similar statements.

Bill Savino of American Honda told the newspaper that Pug Vickers had a "vendetta" against Tim Kelly.

 


Chattanooga Chamber Business Calendar Jan. 23-27

Here is the Chattanooga Chamber Business calendar for Jan. 23-27 Monday, Jan. 23  Get a Job - East Hamilton High School 7:15 a.m. - 2:15 p.m. East Hamilton High School: 2015 Ooltewah Ringgold Road The Chattanooga Chamber’s Get A Job program instructs 10th graders on interviewing, completing job applications, dressing for success and other topics of importance for ... (click for more)

Several Area Counties Included In Tourism Grants

Governor Bill Haslam and Economic and Community Development Commissioner Randy Boyd announced Thursday that 29 communities will receive more than $1 million in Tourism Enhancement Grants to assist with tourism infrastructure assets. “We want to congratulate the 29 communities that will be receiving Tourism Enhancement Grants,” Governor Haslam said. “Tourism is an important ... (click for more)

First Chattanooga Parking Study Since 2004 Gets Underway

The first comprehensive study of parking in downtown Chattanooga since 2004 is getting underway. The project  Is being led by the River City Company and CARTA in partnership with the city of Chattanooga. It is funded by the Lyndhurst and Benwood Foundations along with several downtown stakeholders including Erlanger Health System, UTC and Siskin Hospital. The study ... (click for more)

Cleveland To Get Bus Service To Chattanooga Under Federal Grant

Cleveland, Tn., will be getting bus service to Chattanooga under a federal grant. The city was notified recently that the Tennessee Department of Transportation selected its proposal for funding under the federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement program. Tanisha J. Hall, state long range planning division director, said, "The Cleveland-Chattanooga Commute ... (click for more)

Bikers Need To Have Licenses And Insurance - And Response

I am okay with Haslam’s idea of raising the gas tax and lowering the food tax.  But, I want to see a tax of bicycles since they have their own lanes now and they also have to be maintained. How much revenue would that bring in?  I would think if we have enough bike riders to have the lanes in the first place, there must be enough to generate some money for road improvements. ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Where Is Central’s Auditorium?

I am surely one of the biggest proponents of high school athletics there is, especially after half a decade of being an eye witness to the vast array of lessons that are learned every day by anyone associated with sports. That said, I have watched the Hamilton County Commission waffle on a $500,000 track at Central High School with a certain curiosity because the same high school ... (click for more)