Car covered: 1958 Mercedes-Benz 220S four-door sedan.
What went wrong: The customer backed the car out of his garage and put it into Park. As he opened the door to get out, the car began to roll backwards. He tried to stop it, but was knocked to the ground. The car rolled over his legs (luckily, without causing any injury), down a hill, and eventually stopped when it ran into a tree.
Damage: The door that hit the tree was dented and pushed forward, damaging the front fender.
Cause: Probably a combination of the transmission linkage not being properly adjusted and the hand brake not doing its job.
Hagerty to the rescue! Hagerty paid the full cost to have both the door and fender repaired and repainted at the shop of the owner’s choice. Total cost: $3,289.01.
Prevention Tip: Especially with cars from the ‘50s with worn transmission linkage, putting the car in Park may not always lock the transmission. Best bet is to first apply the footbrake, then put on the emergency brake, and then put the car in Park. Then, carefully release the footbrake and make sure the car does not move.