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Louisiana Parish Recoups $17,600 From Sale of Hurricane-Damaged Cargo Van

Parish of Louisiana


A Louisiana parish needed a reliable method to auction off a hurricane-damaged cargo van to maximize its financial return and minimize the amount of work required by the parish staff. The sale of the cargo van resulted in $17,600 being recouped, more than $10,000 over what the parish had expected

Topics Covered

Hurricanes & Severe Storms
Fleet Management
Process Improvement


General Fund/Existing Public Funds

Project Status

Operational since 2021

Problem Addressed

A local parish in Louisiana wanted to improve its process for auctioning off surplus fleet vehicles, starting with a hurricane-damaged cargo van.

Louisiana experienced serious destruction in 2020 as a result of two major hurricanes. Local governments located in hurricane-prone areas such as Louisiana are no strangers to the devastation hurricanes can wreak. Damage can be expected not only to homes and businesses but also to costly vehicle fleets, which are often kept outdoors.

A local parish in Louisiana intended to remarket a 2017 cargo van that had been damaged during one of 2020’s monstrous hurricanes. Not needing the vehicle anymore, the parish looked to recoup some revenue from its sale. Despite damage to the windshield, front end, and side doors, the three-year-old car had not been flooded and had a clean title with only 2,572 miles.

The parish’s method for auctioning off surplus vehicles was not ideal, taking staff away from more pressing matters. Staff would be tasked with taking photos of the vehicle and creating the ad themselves, both important duties necessary to a sale but neither assignment being anywhere close to their job responsibilities. Furthermore, estimating the value of a vehicle is difficult, which left the parish unable to accurately determine the value of its asset.

Although the vehicle was no longer a perfect fit for the parish, its low mileage and clean title still offered value for the right buyer who could look past the surface-level damage. With that in mind, the parish resolved to look for a different method for remarketing the cargo van that could maximize its financial return and minimize the work done by the parish staff.

Solutions Used

The parish's use of an auction service to help guide the process saved staff time and resulted in a more accurate estimate of the vehicle's worth.

Turning to Sandhills Global for help in maximizing the return on the cargo van, the parish was eager to let the company’s experienced auctioneers complete the creation of the ad. After bringing in a professional auctioneer, high-quality photos of the vehicle were taken, a detailed description was written, and the vehicle was listed.

Certain that the vehicle was worth about $7,000, the parish was shown worldwide auction data through Sandhills Global’s FleetEvaluator tool that instead confirmed the cargo van was worth much more than expected.

The auction drew a large audience due to its online setting and the ability for interested parties to place bids anytime from any device. At the close of the auction, the cargo van sold for $17,600, which was about $10,000 more than the parish had previously expected.



The parish had professional help building the auction listing rather than relying on its employees


Worldwide auction data led the parish to learn that its vehicle estimates were low and that the vehicle was valued much higher than was previously expected


The sale of the cargo van resulted in $17,600 being recouped, more than $10,000 over what the parish had expected


Having improved its method for auctioning off vehicles, the parish can further recoup funds from future auctions

Who Should Consider

Towns and cities storing or trying to repair damaged fleet vehicles whose sale could bring in needed funds.

Last Updated

Mar 30th, 2022
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