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American Towman Magazine Presents the Week in TowingAugust 16 - August 22, 2017

Focus on Versatility

newillusl-1 6a30bBy GEORGE L. NITTI

There is nothing like having a brand new tow truck in your fleet that you know will get used because of its versatility. A&D Towing and Recovery proudly added a 2014 Kenworth T370 with a Vulcan V-30 this week. The Little Ferry and Jersey City, N.J., business, owned by Don Francis, bought it from nearby Elizabeth Truck Center.

"We like it for several reasons," said Ryan Francis, Don's son. "It plays a big role in our company because it is a 16 ton, and will get a lot of use. It will go out an average of three to four times a day. It also has a lot of versatility—you can use the under-reach, switch attachments and tow tractors, box trucks, and SUVs. This makes it easier to bounce the truck from one job to another. Also, it uses a lot less fuel than our heavier duty wreckers."

All of their trucks are red with a thick yellow stripe and thin navy blue stripe that runs across its side, with the name of the company clearly standing out. The A&D is the central focus, written in a straight forward lettering, easy to read, telling you who they are. The phone number is written on the side, which is also easy to see and read.

"We like it clean and simple," said Ryan. "We are not trying to overpower the truck with too many graphics, like all of the trucks with comics on them. We don't put a lot of chrome on our trucks as well."

The lettering "A&D" is a blue sky and tan horizon color with a metallic effect, helping to accentuate the name of the company and giving it a very new feeling.

"We get a lot of compliments on our trucks, such as our 2007, which everyone thinks was just purchased," Ryan said.

What makes this truck different, and even more potentially useful than their other esteemed 16-ton Chevron is the fact that is has a higher body.

"The new toolboxes are twice the size, which will impact how long we stay on the road," Ryan said. "With a smaller toolbox, it limits our capabilities. Having more room to carry equipment will translate into servicing the customer quicker."

With downtown Jersey City continuing to come up in the real estate market, adding more expensive condos and real estate developments, A&D is positioned to continue to do well in this densely populated area.

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Fostering Patriotism at Home

0 d1094By George L. Nitti

Two years ago, Carl's Towing bought J&B Towing, located in Kalama, Wash. As part of the acquisition, the company's tow trucks were thrown into the deal.

One very special truck received from the acquisition was a patriotic-themed 2001 Ford F-650/Jerr-Dan Cougar. Beautifully arrayed in the stars and stripes, the unit serves as a reminder to American values.

According to manager Debbie Bourdage, this tow truck is a source of much pride.

"We absolutely love it," she said. "We're a patriotic company. We love our community and we love showing the truck. There is not one of our guys who drives it who is not proud to drive it."

What Debbie loves about it is that it is dramatic, easily catching your attention.

"It doesn't look like it's manufactured. It doesn't need to be shined up. You can see it a mile away."

Part of the beauty of this design is that it was painted by hand, showcasing the artist's abilities. It integrates the stars on the hood with the stripes on the side in bright red, white and blue colors.

"People love it," Bourdage said. "Kids love it. It makes people feel at ease, because it is patriotic."

One of the patriotic elements that the company prides itself on is being treated well by their employer, a hallmark of Carl DeSpain's business vision 50 years ago when the company originated as a Texaco station. After he died in 2008, sons Mike and Greg took over the company and followed in their father's footsteps, promoting a positive climate for their employees to thrive and survive in.

Bourdage said, "I work for an amazing company. Carl, when he was still alive, treated me like one of his own children. He was a very kind soul—he did everything the right way. He showed us how to be the good guy.

"In our industry," she said, "we are frowned upon—but he had an amazing reputation. I now work for his sons, who took over the business before he passed. They have the same mentality as their father. Good guys to work for. I can't imagine working anywhere else."

Bourdage said, "Carl was patriotic and community-oriented. He supported the community in any way he could. We are well-respected by law enforcement and pretty much the entire community."

Fostering patriotism begins at home, where the community resides.

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© 2017  Tow Industry Week/American Towman Media, Inc.