Fact or Fiction #14: Accident Investigation

Could someone please fill me in on this one? It seems like every vintage men's magazine has an advertisement ecouraging men to pursue a career in accident investigation.  Obviously, this was some sort of scam.  Why would they advertise for an accident investigator? Isn't that a job for either law enforcement or insurance companies?

Regardless of its legitamacy, I love these ads.  They make it look like you'll be the next 007.  It seems nearly every ad features a pretty damsel in distress, and a sharp dressed manly-man coming to her aid.  She's always grinny friskily, while he's professional and oblivious to her advances.

We were all hoodwinked by Sea Monkeys at one point - we now know they're nothing more than a type of shrimp.  But has anyone ever figured out the scam behind the accident investigator ads? The booklets that you sent off for were free, so that's not where the rip off is.

But you'd think a job where you were paid big bucks to rescue sexy women wouldn't need to advertise.  Was there a dramatic increase in the number of lawsuits and insurance claims, resulting in insurance companies scrambling to hire rugged and verile playboys?

Perhaps, I'm just a jaded old man who doesn't trust anything anymore.  Maybe this really was the mother of all jobs for guys.  Maybe you did come to the aid of beautiful chicks day after day who were only too willing to be serviced.  You never know..... and if this job still exists, where can I send my resume?


  1. Never heard of this one before. A shame I missed my calling though or maybe not.

  2. An accident investigator or insurance adjuster is the guy who investigates insurance claims. This mostly involves going to body shops to see if cars are totaled or not, going over medical records, accident records and reading insurance contracts. I knew a guy who did it and that’s what he said he did .

    Of course the greatest insurance investigator of the 70s was ’Banacek’ (George Peppard).He’d always find the missing object/person, explain how the scam was done and collect a million from the insurance company for the trouble. And look cool doing it.

    The show never mentioned if he got into the profession by responding to an ad in ’ Swank’.

  3. In addition to Banacek, there was also the radio drama which ran into the 60s called "Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar".

    It was described as "the transcribed adventures of the man with the action-packed expense account — America's fabulous freelance insurance investigator."


    Love the blog!