Digital Edition
The Week's Features
Helicopter recovery proves to be a thrill ride.
Randall Resch weighs in on recovering and transporting upside down vehicles.
Vintage tow trucks that still get the job done.
All new winches from Warn Industries.
Events
Las Vegas, NV.
April 30-May 2, 2024
Fort Worth, TX.
June 20-22, 2024
Fort Worth, TX.
June 20-22, 2024
Baltimore, MD.
Nov. 21-23, 2024
Premiere of "Home of the Brave" with lyrics • Click here to play
American Towman Magazine Presents the Week in Towing June 12 - June 18, 2024

Stranded and Left to Die?

Cant Afford to Pay PIC f6ede
By Randall C. Resch

Through tears and sobs, Terry Sandage, father of 29-year-old Debbie Miranda, a resident of Jefferson, New Jersey, made a gut-wrenching plea to the New Jersey’s Garden State Towing Association. His hope was to change the manner business is conducted when motorists are stranded on the highway and have no money to pay for roadside services.

In 1994, Miss Miranda experienced a flat tire driving on a Jersey highway. Because she couldn’t pay $40 for services, the tow operator allegedly left her stranded. Soon after, a good Samaritan stopped to help change the tire; however, Miss Miranda was struck and killed by a passing motorist. And, as it would happen, the tow industry would befall bad press made in a prime-time, emotionally charged statement where Mr. Sandage stated, “Because my daughter didn’t have $40, she was left to die.”

In a similar west-coast scenario, a husband and wife were broken down on a San Diego highway late at night and awaited a tow truck to take their disabled car off the highway. When the tow truck arrived, the couple advised they had no means to pay for the tow. The tower simply departed leaving the vehicle and the couple stranded. They remained with their vehicle hoping the highway patrol would happen by; however, in o-dark-thirty hours, a DUI driver plowed into their vehicle killing them both.

What’s the Solution?

These are horrific events that reflect the dangers and complications of not providing towing or on-scene services. I realize that “towers don’t work for free,” yet there has to be an obvious concern in leaving someone stranded. Especially true to the high costs of towing in today’s market, it’s a tough nut to swallow not getting paid. So, what can or what should towers do to provide an empathetic solution to simply leaving motorists stranded?

Towers are oftentimes the brunt and blame of wrongful injury and fatality scenarios. The plaintiff’s attorney will likely argue that a “Special Relationship” was created. Once the tow truck arrives on-scene, it may be asked, “Did the actions of the tow operator cause the motorist to be injured?”

Because “special relationships” are extremely difficult to define and defend, I’ll make no attempt to practice law, but bring focus to what towers are up against should they leave a stranded motorist to fend for themselves.

Drivers are certain to get caught in “that moral crossfire” of choosing to leave or provide a free tow when they’re not collecting monies for providing services. In the case of Miss Miranda being killed, the question was raised whether “money was the issue” and not that of protecting someone’s life. Here are seven potential solutions when the inability to pay is immediate:

-- Drivers contact dispatch and have a manager or supervisor determine what to do
-- Contact the highway patrol and remain on-scene until they arrive
-- Offer a free “Safety Tow” off the highway, or conduct the service for free
-- During prime-time hours, request a freeway service patrol or other motorist assist program to respond
-- Why not offer first, situate them into the tow truck with their seatbelt’s on, load the vehicle, then deliver it to a repair shop or service center
-- Ask the shop’s service manager to pay the tow and put it on the motorist’s repair bill, or
-- Take them to an ATM where there’s access to money

While not getting paid is the “operational description” of this narrative, it makes sense to provide a free, “Safety Tow” perhaps to save the lives of stranded motorists. Providing a free Safety Tow (or provide service) certainly promotes “good will” versus having to defend a multi-million-dollar, wrongful death lawsuit, or being named as an “uncaring tow company” during prime-time news. 

Offering free service or Safety Tow off the highway is a compassionate thing to do. What if it were your family member who didn’t have funds for service? How would you want the tow company to react? While it’s every tow company’s right to refuse service, it’s important to understand the dangers and legal ramifications that exist when making the choice to leave behind the motorist who can’t pay.       



American Towman Today - June 14, 2024
American Towman Today - June 14, 2024
Click here to read more

Tow Truck Activity Spikes in South Florida

Published: Friday, June 14, 2024

In South Florida, a severe rainstorm caused extensive flooding, leading to a significant increase in tow truck activity. Tow truck drivers were overwhelmed with calls to rescue stranded vehicles, working nonstop from day to night.

Key areas like North Miami, Hialeah, Dania Beach, and Hallandale Beach saw numerous cars stuck in knee-high water, with tow trucks removing vehicles one by one. One driver mentioned towing approximately 10 to 15 cars, while another estimated having up to 100 more cars to assist. "Too many," said one tow truck driver.

Tow truck drivers faced challenges navigating flooded streets themselves, making their work even more difficult. "Because you can’t go nowhere. All the roads are blocked," said another tow truck driver. The high demand for towing services highlights the dangers of driving through floodwaters and the substantial costs associated with vehicle recovery and repairs.

Source: wsvn.com/



Intense flooding in southern Florida kept tow companies working around the clock.

The “Upside-Down Recovery” Debate 

Published: Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Upside Recovery PIC fc149
By Randall C. Resch 

If this were your crash scene, why would it be necessary to load “upside down?” Tow forums post this “ongoing debate,” in which towers respond to recovery calls involving a casualty vehicle splayed atop its roof. Towers have likely grown tired of rehashing the same topic repeatedly.  

The Tow Police fail to recognize there may be a “necessary purpose” for loading upside down. Because a percentage of towers can’t work carrier rollovers, highway patrol and law enforcement are likely to order towers to load vehicles upside down. Why? Because some towers don’t have quick clearance skills.  

On-scene challenges like darkness, blocked line-of-sight, curved roadways, operators taking too much time, etc., may demand that casualty vehicles be dragged onto the carrier’s deck for safety considerations. Towers oftentimes lose sight of reasoning in which their ego and arrogant attitude forego proper thinking.  

Here’s the Drill 

When arriving operators step from a carrier’s cab. He or she may be met by troopers who request the tower load “upside down” to move it out of lanes quickly. To towers who understand this process, it’s called, “Quick Clearance.”    

Why can’t towers understand the importance of preventing “secondary impact” intending to save responder lives? Being plowed into by a distracted motorist is the reality of our work. It’s not illegal to load upside down and it’s something that “can be done” with quick precision.   

For hardheaded towers, does refusing to load upside-down violate contract stipulations? Maybe! California’s, Tow Service Agreement, Section 16, “Demeanor and Conduct, Section A and A2, asserts: “While involved in CHP rotation tow operations or related business, the tow operator and/or employee(s) shall refrain from any acts of misconduct including, but not limited to, any of the following: (2) “Lack of service, selective service, or refusal to provide service which the operator is capable of performing.”  

In the best interests of safety and quick clearance, troopers expect towers to comply. To that I ask, why do egocentric towers “angrily and adamantly decline” the process? While keyboard warriors talk that hard line, they’re likely not hearing what reasons “why” they’re being asked to load upside down, nor are some towers willing to offer solutions?  

Towers should expand their minds to the bigger picture of on-scene safety and quick clearance, noting it’s rare (if ever) for an upside vehicle to burst sporadically into flames. I challenge anyone to prove otherwise. Sure, the potential is there, but the chance of dying during a pedestrian strike is far greater. 

What’s a Recovery? 

Upside transport is a “recovery process” that causes heated and repeated discussions. Perhaps towers should fully understand what constitutes “a recovery” in the eyes of the highway patrol? Because the law enforcement community experiences “first-hand” that not all operators are equally competent, an officer’s decision to load upside down could be based on an operator’s inability to work the roll. 

“Recovery” as defined in the CHP’s Tow Service Agreement states: “For purposes of the TSA, recovery is defined as a vehicle which is overturned, down an embankment, or otherwise not upright on its wheels.” 

In Chapter 6, “Response to Calls”, Section B, “An operator or tow truck driver shall respond with a properly equipped tow truck of the class required to tow the vehicle, perform vehicle recovery (e.g., rollover, down embankment), provide service (e.g., fuel, flat tire change), and be in possession of the appropriate class of driver’s license, applicable endorsements, and permits.”  

Section 9, “Tow Truck Classifications”, Subsection (B) (2), it reads, “An operator who has a car carrier is exempted from the recovery, wheel lift, and boom capability requirements. However, the car carrier must be an additional unit and shall not be used for recovery.”  

CHP’s rotation contract states, “Tow truck drivers shall perform all towing and recovery operations in the safest and most expedient manner possible. 1) This includes when the operator fails to answer the phone, is unable to respond, is unable to perform the required service, refuses to respond or provide service, or is canceled due to excessive response time.” 

Before refusing an officer’s request, know that contracts’ demand operators are trained and experienced. Note: Dating back to 1928, California leads the nation in on-highway fatalities perhaps because too many towers weren’t thinking “safety-first” beyond simply working the scene. 

Push to Shove 

If an officer (or Incident Commander) requests casualty vehicles be loaded upside-down due to on-scene considerations, should towers refuse to load upside-down? If a tower remains adamant, they may be ordered to leave with the officer requesting the next rotation company to respond. Rest assured, a “refusal” may initiate an officer’s aggressive follow-up complaint to the area’s tow boss.  

The bottom-line? It's important tow owners understand that flatbed carriers, in most contracts, aren’t “recognized” as recovery trucks per contract wording. Showing up with a carrier (to a crash scene) may immediately be the first (contract) violation; sending an untrained operator is violation “two”; refusing an officer’s lawful request is violation “three.”  

If you’re that tower refusing a lawful order or upside-down request, a refusal may cause your company to be removed from rotation. Personally, my varsity operators are instructed to do whatever’s requested by officers on-scene, even if that means load upside-down. Until such time towers convince law enforcement they’re trained in carrier operations, this topic won’t go away.      

Operations Editor Randall C. Resch is a retired, veteran, California police officer, former tow business owner and industry advocate. As consultant and trainer, he authored and teaches tow truck operator safety courses approved by the California Highway Patrol. For 51-years, he has been involved in the towing and recovery industry. In 28-years, he has contributed more than 700-safety focused articles for American Towman Magazine, TowIndustryWeek.com and is a frequent seminar presenter and beauty pageant judge at tow shows. In 2014, he was inducted to the International Towing and Recovery Industry Hall of Fame, was the 3rd recipient of the industry's "Dave Jones Leadership Award," and is a member of American Towman’s Safety Committee.  

Email Randy at rreschran@gmail.com

Texas Trifecta! Towing/ Auto Body/ Road Safety @ Fort Worth Convention Center June 20-22, 2024
By Don Lomax
Click to enlarge


Do you support "blue lights" legislation allowing rear facing blue lights on tow trucks?
Yes
No
Answers are anonymous
homediv
Managing Editor: George Nitti
ATTV Editor & Anchor: Emily Oz
Advertising Sales (800-732-3869):
Dennie Ortiz x213
Site Progr., Graphics & Video: Ryan Oser
Operations Editor: Randall C. Resch
Tow Business Editor: Brian J. Riker
Tow Illustrated Editor: George L. Nitti
Safety Editor: Jimmy Santos
June 12 - June 18, 2024
Port of Baltimore Bridge is expected to resume commercial shipping traffic as it has reopened.

Maritime Traffic Resumes through Port of Baltimore Bridge

Published: Thursday, June 13, 2024 Authorities expect the Port of Baltimore to return to normal commercial shipping levels after the channel fully reopened following the Francis Scott Key Bridge collapse.

In a Twitter post, President Joe Biden said, "Thanks to the grit and resilience of Governor Moore, our Unified Command, and every last man and woman who worked tirelessly in response to the France Scott Key bridge collapse – The Port of Baltimore is open for business again."

The collapse in March had halted most maritime traffic and required a $100 million cleanup effort involving multiple agencies. Now that the channel has been restored, companies that had rerouted their cargo are expected to return.

The port, which processes the most cars and farm equipment in the country, saw significant economic impacts from the collapse, affecting thousands of workers. Thousands of longshoremen, truckers and small business owners have seen their jobs impacted by the collapse and its economic ripple effects, which extend well beyond the Baltimore region.

The Biden administration has pledged full federal funding for the bridge rebuild, estimated at nearly $2 billion, but congressional approval is pending.

The cargo ship Dali, which caused the collapse, was refloated on May 20, allowing partial channel reopening and now full resumption of two-way traffic. Investigations into the incident continue.

Source:www.ttnews.com/

Talbert Manufacturing Announces Top Dealerships

Published: Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Talbert Manufacturing has named Hale Trailer Brake & Wheel of Voorhees, New Jersey, as its top dealer for 2023. Hale has held this position for 16 consecutive years and achieved the highest parts sales last year. Troy Geisler, Talbert's VP of Sales and Marketing, praised Hale's exceptional performance and dedication.

Hale Trailer operates 15 full-service locations from Maine to Florida, Arkansas, and Iowa. They offer new and used trailers, equipment, service and repair, rentals, and parts and accessories.

Geisler also expressed gratitude to all Talbert dealers for their commitment to the company's values and customer partnership, noting their vital role and pledging continued support.

Other top dealers include:

1. Blackburn Truck Equipment, Georgia: Specializes in towing and recovery equipment repairs and installations.
2. Columbus Equipment Company, Ohio: Serves diverse industries including construction and mining with ten locations.
3. Freightliner of Grand Rapids, Michigan: Provides trucks and trailers for construction and agriculture.
4. Leslie Equipment Company, Kentucky, Ohio, West Virginia: Supplies equipment for forestry and mining with eight locations.
5. Lucky's Trailer Sales, Vermont: Offers trailers, parts, and full-service repairs with locations in New Hampshire and New York.
6. Lynch Chicago, Illinois: Deals in new and used tow trucks and heavy-duty tow equipment.
7. Remorques Lewis, Quebec, Canada: Sells and rents specialized heavy-haul and semi trailers.
8. Royal Truck & Utility Trailer, Michigan: Provides trailers, wheel reconditioning, service, fabrication, and parts with seven locations.
9. West Side Tractor, Illinois: Specializes in construction and forestry equipment with 11 locations in Illinois, Michigan, and Indiana.

Talbert, with over 80 dealership partners in North America, has implemented a new parts ordering system, Parts 123, to enhance dealer support and service efficiency.

Source: www.truckpartsandservice.com

Virginia to Give Boot to California's Emissions Standards

Published: Tuesday, June 11, 2024

Virginia has decided not to adopt California's stricter Advanced Clean Cars II (ACC II) emissions standards, effective January 1, 2025. This decision, announced by Governor Glenn Youngkin on June 5, means that the state will no longer follow California's mandate that 35% of new model year 2026 cars be electric vehicles (EVs), with a goal of 100% EVs for new light-duty vehicles by 2035. 

Virginia will revert to federal emissions standards under the Clean Air Act after the expiration of California's ACC I standards at the end of December 2024. Governor Youngkin criticized the California mandates as "unworkable" and "out of touch with reality," emphasizing the importance of consumer choice in vehicle purchases. 

The state's decision is backed by a memorandum from Travis Voyles, Virginia's secretary of natural and historic resources, and a legal opinion from Attorney General Jason Miyares, who stated that Virginia residents are not legally bound to follow California's regulations. The decision aims to avoid the substantial fines and penalties that could have resulted from non-compliance with ACC II, which Governor Youngkin's office estimated could have amounted to hundreds of millions of dollars. 

Opponents of the California emissions regulations, including state Senator Ryan McDougle, argue that Virginia's laws should be determined by its own elected officials rather than those in California. As of 2023, EVs constituted only 9% of vehicle sales in Virginia, highlighting the challenge of meeting the proposed ACC II standards. 

By rejecting these mandates, Virginia aims to protect local auto dealers from significant financial burdens and preserve consumer choice in the automotive market. 

Source: www.ttnews.com

Biden Administration Imposes New Fuel Economy Standards 

Published: Monday, June 10, 2024

The Biden administration has implemented tighter vehicle fuel mileage standards as part of its strategy to transition the American auto market towards electric vehicles (EVs) to reduce pollution and combat climate change.

The new standards require American automakers to increase the average fuel economy of passenger cars to 65 miles per gallon by 2031 and light trucks to 45 miles per gallon by the same year. Additionally, heavy-duty vehicles will need to reach 35 miles per gallon by 2035. These standards are part of broader regulations, including those set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which aim for a majority of new cars sold to be electric or hybrids by 2032. 

The administration's push for EVs is supported by the 2022 Inflation Reduction Act, which offers tax credits for EV buyers and incentives for charging infrastructure and manufacturers. This initiative aligns with global efforts to retire internal combustion engines to mitigate severe climate impacts. 

However, the effort faces opposition from former President Donald Trump and other Republicans, who argue it limits consumer choice and claim it bans conventional cars. The oil and gas industry is also campaigning against Biden's policies. Trump has pledged to reverse Biden's climate policies if re-elected but has shown some support for EVs, particularly praising Tesla CEO Elon Musk. 

Despite some weakening of the initial proposals due to lobbying from automakers, the administration asserts that the new standards will save consumers money on fuel, reduce pollution, and decrease reliance on foreign oil. Legal experts note that the dual approach of the EPA and Transportation Department rules could provide resilience against legal challenges. While some critics believe the standards should be stronger, automakers have generally expressed satisfaction with the new rules. 

Demand for EVs, although slowed, is still increasing, with significant sales growth and decreasing prices making.

Source: www.nytimes.com

Driver to be Prosecuted Over Death of Tower 

Published: Thursday, June 06, 2024

The driver that struck and killed 25-year-old towman Keegan Spencer on a Michigan freeway in late 2023 will be prosecuted for his actions. Spencer was parked on a median as he was seeking to help a stray dog before he was killed. 

Payton Ferris, who was driving the car, was charged with a moving violation which caused Spencer’s death. If convicted, Ferris could be punished by up to one year in jail and $2,000 in fines. 

"I feel devastated. I feel let down by the judicial system," said Miko Garrison, Spencer's mother. "I feel a lot of frustration, and I feel like it brings on a lot of heartache that our son's life did not matter." 

Matt Spencer, Keagan's father, said that while they don't want Ferris to "become a statistic of the judicial system," they were hoping to see charges that would encourage careful driving from others moving forward. 

"This is a culture problem," said Matt Spencer. "We have to get behind our wheel and start thinking about others. It's just not all about us. And we need to start doing our part. It's all of us." 

Keagan's family have been advocating for a new bill nicknamed Keagan's Law. The law would allow tow truck drivers to use blue flashing lights while at emergency scenes. Matt Spencer has spoken to lawmakers about the bill in both Michigan and Washington, D.C. 

Keagan's parents said they know some tow truck drivers who have decided to quit because they no longer feel safe. 

"This is a big loss not just to our family, but to our community, to the tow community also," Garrison said. "And it's also a very hard pill to swallow for those men that are out there every day."   

Source: 
https://www.wzzm13.com
https://www.youtube.com/

Pennsylvania Bill Seeks to Expedite Junk Titles

Published: Wednesday, June 05, 2024

The Pennsylvania Legislature passed a bill (House Bill 2251) introduced by state Rep. Ed Neilson to expedite the processing of junk titles for abandoned vehicles, relieving tow truck operators from the burden of storing these vehicles for extended periods.  

The bill mandates the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) to complete administrative steps more quickly, amending Title 75 of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes. It focuses on procedures for abandoned vehicles, including notice requirements to owners and lienholders, authorization for disposal of unclaimed vehicles, and processing nonrepairable or salvage vehicles. 

The bill aims to assist tow truck operators by ensuring timely processing and delivery of junk titles, reducing their storage challenges. It also benefits communities by allowing quicker removal of abandoned vehicles, which improves neighborhood aesthetics and safety. Additionally, the legislation highlights the importance of efficient government processes, demonstrating a commitment to improving PennDOT's responsiveness. 

House Bill 2251 passed with overwhelming support (201-1) in the House and now moves to the state Senate for consideration.  

Source: www.msn.com

homediv homediv homediv tow411
homediv
Rate how they handled this recovery
Great job on a challenging recovery.
Hit all the basics on this one. Thumbs up.
Creative approach on this recovery. Good job.
I would approach this recovery differently.
Vehicle(s) could be rigged more efficiently.
More trucks were needed.
June 12 - June 18, 2024

Helicopter Recovery 1, 2, 3 

Published: Wednesday, June 12, 2024

370837572 1471060180381994 6632209208115612357 n df173

By George L. Nitti

It’s not on a tower’s everyday checklist to encounter a recovery involving a helicopter. Some may seem so easy that towing companies might wish they had more to invoice on – a nice piece of change compared to those more conventional pickups from a motor club dispatch.  

Jerry Zehrung III, lead operator for Schofield, Wisconsin tow company Lightening Express Towing, said, “I never thought I’d have a helicopter hooked on the boom of our heavy wrecker. It’s just that you really never know what kind of call you’re going to get.” 

Zehrung relished the opportunity to sink his teeth into something just a little more offbeat than his day to day, finding his first-time helicopter recovery a bit of a thrill ride, literally. Bringing his 30-ton 06’ International on a Jerr Dan wrecker into the wreckage scene, a half mile ride on a piece of overgrown land once a landing strip, you might say he found it like a Safari ride, sans giraffes and elephants, cougars and hippos. Zehrung was having fun driving driving down a bouncy half mile trail on soft sand towards destination recovery. 

Upon arrival, a team from the anonymous helicopter company included a mechanic and trailer driver waiting on Zehrung to play his part in this recovery encounter.  

“It was a catastrophic failure,” said Zehrung. “The helicopter was 3000 feet (about twice the height of the Empire State Building) up in the sky before it had engine failure. The pilot had to do a steep dive to get the blades spinning really fast. Unbelievably, everybody walked away.” 

First things first, Zehrung got out of his wrecker and did a walkabout through the long, tall grasses in order to find a spot to position his wrecker. He didn’t want to plant it on a soft spot. 

“I wanted to make sure I could get the wrecker into position to lift the aircraft,” he said. 

Rigging would be no problem. The crew of the helicopter company had it under control, including concocting specialized rigging made of steel cable to hook onto the blades of the helicopter rotor.” 

“We told them that their having more knowledge of the aircraft that it would probably be better for them to rig to the helicopter and let us rig our tow truck to their rigging.” 

With everything under control, Zehrung was in command of the lift off, lowering his 19-foot stick to the helicopter rotor, and then attaching his winch line to the steel cable which was attached to the helicopter. All Zehrung had to do was lift up and put down the casualty onto the specialized trailer, as easy as 1, 2, 3. 

“It couldn’t have been more perfect the way that it landed,” said Zehrung. “The whole thing took about 45 minutes.Every now and then we get some pretty crazy stuff.” 

Indeed, recoveries often come in surprise packages. You never know what you’re going to get in that cracker jack box. Even a helicopter. 

Bigger is not Always Better

Published: Wednesday, May 29, 2024

dumptruckcover ea2e9
By George L. Nitti

Although tow operators are skilled at maneuvering their units in tight spaces, some spaces prove more challenging than others, requiring a different approach and equipment. 

Such was the case when McGuire’s Towing & Recovery of Ashland, Kentucky was called in the afternoon to recover a dump truck weighted down with more than 10,000 pounds of gravel. It had overturned on a narrow county road that was partially under repair.  

“The dump truck went up the hill and had to back down the hill,” said principal tow operator Stephen McGuire. “When there’s a lot of weight on a small road and you get too close to the edge, it will give way. So this dump truck rolled right over into a ditch.” 

Ideally McGuire’s would have recovered the dump truck with their 50 or 60 ton rotator, but that was impossible under the circumstances.  

Arriving on scene 65 miles from their location, brothers Stephen and Sam McGuire brought in their 2018 Ram 5500 2465 Century 12 ton/SP 9000 Side Puller and a 2015 Peterbuilt 337 Century 3212 16 ton. 

Stephen said, “The two trucks that we got in there were about as big as we could get in there.” 

Looking at the little room in which they had to maneuver and the extreme angle at which the dump truck was perched, Steve admitted that the recovery looked daunting, saying to himself, “This is going to be a nightmare. Maybe we will come back tomorrow.” 

But as the two brothers prepared for the job (they have been working together since they were kids driving with their father at 8 to 10 years old) they were resolved to finish what they started. 

Stephen said, “Working with my brother – we kind of feed off of each other. We’ve never left anything behind.  Everything we went after, it’s came out and it’s come with us at the time we went to go with it.”  

The first line of business was clearing the area and offloading some of the gravel. Fortunately, a Kubota Excavator was being used along the county road and was available for their use to clear away brush, briar thickets and poison ivy around the casualty.  

“We also had to deal with a huge hornet nest that was buried in that bank on the top side of the dump truck,” said Stephen. 

Then the tow operators positioned their trucks in front and behind the casualty. 

“We had to take the front hubcap off to get the truck in place because there was no room to get any angle. We backed up one truck a mile and half while the Dodge was driven in.” 

Establishing winch lines to the casualty, Stephen ran a three-part line to the front springs of the passenger side of the dump truck while Sam handled the back side, running a two-part line to a tree about 50 feet up the hill and back down, where it was hooked to the backside of the driver’s side. 

Tightening up the lines, they checked for any issues that would have “showed themselves up” during the recovery process and slid the truck up sideways until they were able to upright it by first sliding the rear onto the road and then pulling up the nose of the truck. 

“We had to work quickly,” said Steve. “In these hills it gets a little darker a little faster.” 

With mission accomplished in less than an hour, the truck was drivable, with no damage. 

Show Yours @ TIW

Do you have a recovery to share with TIW readers? Send some pics and info to our Field Editor George L. Nitti at georgenitti@gmail.com; your story may even be selected for print in American Towman Magazine!



Rollback Recovery in a Steep, Tight Space

Published: Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Resized 20230714 090825 1 9a10b
By George L. Nitti

On the island of St. John, one of the three U.S. Virgin Islands, some of the narrow roads and tight spaces can get motorists in trouble, requiring the assistance of one of St. John’s local tow companies. 

Dwight Smith, owner of Dwight’s Towing, has been in business on the island for 15 years, running his tow operation out of his flatbed. 

“On a good day, I do five or six tows a day,” he said. 

His truck is versatile, a Ford F550 with a 99’ Jerr Dan 19’ aluminum bed. He said it was purchased from ebay from a seller from Baltimore, sent down by a shipper to Fort Everglades, Florida, where it was then shipped over to the island.  

One fairly recent recovery involved a challenging scenario for any tower – handling a rolled over Lincoln SUV situated on a steep, narrow hill. 

“I got the call the night before, but the police officer on scene advised that it was dangerous to go up there at night.” 

The following morning, Dwight got in touch with the vehicle’s owner to do the job.  

“The guy was going up the hill and he didn’t have a lot of gas in his car. So the vehicle stalled, the car rolled back, hit a rock on the side and flipped over. It landed in the middle of the road. Lucky for him that he didn’t go over the side.” 

Since the vehicle was about a half mile up the narrow road, a logistic consideration for Dwight was how he was going to get his unit in position to recover the vehicle. He realized that his only option was to back up his bed up the steep hill, yet keeping in mind the dangers involved. 

“On that same hill there is an excavator down in the bush that got away and also one of those big concrete trucks. Both of them still down in the bush.” 

Putting his unit in 4-wheel drive in low gear, Dwight let his truck do the work, walking it up the hill at about 5 miles an hour and taking approximately 15 minutes to get to the casualty. 

Then he proceeded to hook the casualty by the frame, dragging it on its side up onto his flatbed, noting that there was no other way to maneuver or turn the vehicle over and that even if he could turn it over, the wheels would not have landed on the roadside.  

He said, “When I go to the scene of a recovery, I always keep an open mind and figure out a way that I’m not going to create damage to a vehicle. In this case, the SUV already had damage and I wasn’t worried that I was going to do much more damage to it.” 

Another recent recovery was an SUV that went over the side of a wall, landing in the bush, about 20 feet down. 

“In that case, I have no other choice but to hook it up and pull it out. You have to use whatever resources you have to get the job done. Sometimes it takes a little longer.  A flatbed on a small island is critical to one’s success as a tower. Although a rotator in some situations might be preferable, like lifing a rav 4 out of the bush, its just not practical to bring that kind of equipment on this island.” 

On island Dwight it well respected. 

He said, “A hundred percent of the time that people call me, they know I am going to treat them fairly. I’m not going to overcharge. It’s about treating people right and getting their respect. The word gets out and people just pass it on.” 

homediv
June 12 - June 18, 2024

The “Upside-Down Recovery” Debate 

Published: Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Upside Recovery PIC fc149
By Randall C. Resch 

If this were your crash scene, why would it be necessary to load “upside down?” Tow forums post this “ongoing debate,” in which towers respond to recovery calls involving a casualty vehicle splayed atop its roof. Towers have likely grown tired of rehashing the same topic repeatedly.  

The Tow Police fail to recognize there may be a “necessary purpose” for loading upside down. Because a percentage of towers can’t work carrier rollovers, highway patrol and law enforcement are likely to order towers to load vehicles upside down. Why? Because some towers don’t have quick clearance skills.  

On-scene challenges like darkness, blocked line-of-sight, curved roadways, operators taking too much time, etc., may demand that casualty vehicles be dragged onto the carrier’s deck for safety considerations. Towers oftentimes lose sight of reasoning in which their ego and arrogant attitude forego proper thinking.  

Here’s the Drill 

When arriving operators step from a carrier’s cab. He or she may be met by troopers who request the tower load “upside down” to move it out of lanes quickly. To towers who understand this process, it’s called, “Quick Clearance.”    

Why can’t towers understand the importance of preventing “secondary impact” intending to save responder lives? Being plowed into by a distracted motorist is the reality of our work. It’s not illegal to load upside down and it’s something that “can be done” with quick precision.   

For hardheaded towers, does refusing to load upside-down violate contract stipulations? Maybe! California’s, Tow Service Agreement, Section 16, “Demeanor and Conduct, Section A and A2, asserts: “While involved in CHP rotation tow operations or related business, the tow operator and/or employee(s) shall refrain from any acts of misconduct including, but not limited to, any of the following: (2) “Lack of service, selective service, or refusal to provide service which the operator is capable of performing.”  

In the best interests of safety and quick clearance, troopers expect towers to comply. To that I ask, why do egocentric towers “angrily and adamantly decline” the process? While keyboard warriors talk that hard line, they’re likely not hearing what reasons “why” they’re being asked to load upside down, nor are some towers willing to offer solutions?  

Towers should expand their minds to the bigger picture of on-scene safety and quick clearance, noting it’s rare (if ever) for an upside vehicle to burst sporadically into flames. I challenge anyone to prove otherwise. Sure, the potential is there, but the chance of dying during a pedestrian strike is far greater. 

What’s a Recovery? 

Upside transport is a “recovery process” that causes heated and repeated discussions. Perhaps towers should fully understand what constitutes “a recovery” in the eyes of the highway patrol? Because the law enforcement community experiences “first-hand” that not all operators are equally competent, an officer’s decision to load upside down could be based on an operator’s inability to work the roll. 

“Recovery” as defined in the CHP’s Tow Service Agreement states: “For purposes of the TSA, recovery is defined as a vehicle which is overturned, down an embankment, or otherwise not upright on its wheels.” 

In Chapter 6, “Response to Calls”, Section B, “An operator or tow truck driver shall respond with a properly equipped tow truck of the class required to tow the vehicle, perform vehicle recovery (e.g., rollover, down embankment), provide service (e.g., fuel, flat tire change), and be in possession of the appropriate class of driver’s license, applicable endorsements, and permits.”  

Section 9, “Tow Truck Classifications”, Subsection (B) (2), it reads, “An operator who has a car carrier is exempted from the recovery, wheel lift, and boom capability requirements. However, the car carrier must be an additional unit and shall not be used for recovery.”  

CHP’s rotation contract states, “Tow truck drivers shall perform all towing and recovery operations in the safest and most expedient manner possible. 1) This includes when the operator fails to answer the phone, is unable to respond, is unable to perform the required service, refuses to respond or provide service, or is canceled due to excessive response time.” 

Before refusing an officer’s request, know that contracts’ demand operators are trained and experienced. Note: Dating back to 1928, California leads the nation in on-highway fatalities perhaps because too many towers weren’t thinking “safety-first” beyond simply working the scene. 

Push to Shove 

If an officer (or Incident Commander) requests casualty vehicles be loaded upside-down due to on-scene considerations, should towers refuse to load upside-down? If a tower remains adamant, they may be ordered to leave with the officer requesting the next rotation company to respond. Rest assured, a “refusal” may initiate an officer’s aggressive follow-up complaint to the area’s tow boss.  

The bottom-line? It's important tow owners understand that flatbed carriers, in most contracts, aren’t “recognized” as recovery trucks per contract wording. Showing up with a carrier (to a crash scene) may immediately be the first (contract) violation; sending an untrained operator is violation “two”; refusing an officer’s lawful request is violation “three.”  

If you’re that tower refusing a lawful order or upside-down request, a refusal may cause your company to be removed from rotation. Personally, my varsity operators are instructed to do whatever’s requested by officers on-scene, even if that means load upside-down. Until such time towers convince law enforcement they’re trained in carrier operations, this topic won’t go away.      

Operations Editor Randall C. Resch is a retired, veteran, California police officer, former tow business owner and industry advocate. As consultant and trainer, he authored and teaches tow truck operator safety courses approved by the California Highway Patrol. For 51-years, he has been involved in the towing and recovery industry. In 28-years, he has contributed more than 700-safety focused articles for American Towman Magazine, TowIndustryWeek.com and is a frequent seminar presenter and beauty pageant judge at tow shows. In 2014, he was inducted to the International Towing and Recovery Industry Hall of Fame, was the 3rd recipient of the industry's "Dave Jones Leadership Award," and is a member of American Towman’s Safety Committee.  

Email Randy at rreschran@gmail.com

Hydration – Not Just for Athletes

Published: Thursday, June 06, 2024

NOAA Seaonal Map 2024 copy 14ccc
By Brian J Riker

While the heatwave facing most of the Western and Southern U.S. was the genesis of this article it is important to note that hydration is critical regardless of the extreme temperatures, even in winter months. According to a report by the Associated Press, analyzing data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 2,300 people died in 2023 from heat related illness, the highest in 45 years of records. Sadly, the true death toll is likely much higher.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has released a map that predicts above average temperatures for most of the United States this summer. Combine this with their prediction for an above average active hurricane season and we are in for a wild ride this summer!

Back to hydration, what should you do? As an employer, OSHA requires you to provide a workplace free from recognized hazards, including weather related hazards like high heat. OSHA takes this mission seriously, so seriously that they ask for details of your workplace hydration plan during every routine visit and incident investigation -even when hydration did not, nor could have, played any contributing factor in the injury or death such as struck-by or crushed-by incidents.

OSHA standards require you to provide clean, potable water for your workforce to drink as proper hydration is essential to prevent heat related illness. For short jobs, those less than two hours in duration, simple water is sufficient. For jobs longer than two hours OSHA recommends providing electrolyte containing beverages such as sports drinks due to the fact that workers lose salt and other electrolytes when they sweat. Substantial loss of electrolytes can lead to muscle cramping and other dangerous health problems.

Do not wait until you are feeling thirsty to drink, instead workers should drink at least 8 ounces of water every twenty minutes, and it is the duty of the employer to remind employees to drink on a regular basis. When heat stress is high employers should require workers to take regular breaks with the length and frequency of these breaks increasing as the risk of heat stress rises. Keep in mind that some personal protective equipment (PPE) can add to the risk of heat related illness; however that is not an excuse not to wear required or recommended PPE.

Besides the Federal OSHA standards on heat exposure, at least five individual states have their own heat standards that are more restrictive or detailed than the Federal standard. Those states include California, Colorado, Minnesota, Oregon and Washington.

For guidance on creating your own heat standards the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) has published criteria (Publication 2016-105) that includes recommendations for how employers should prevent heat related illness.

In summary, towers are encouraged to always have a supply of drinking water in their trucks and at job sites. This water, especially if in individual bottles, should be protected from exposure to direct sunlight and high heat as these conditions can break down the plastic bottles and pollute the water with microplastics and other harmful chemicals. I suggest keeping bottled water in a cooler chest in a side compartment or under the seat and replenishing often. Carrying a few bottles of low/no sugar added Gatorade, or similar sports drink, in the same cooler chest will ensure availability of adequate electrolyte replenishment when you are caught with an emergency job that lasts longer than expected.

Lastly, please be aware of the early signs and symptoms of heat related illness. Stop working immediately, move to a cool, shady area preferably with air conditioning and seek help if you experience any of the following symptoms:

-- Confusion
-- Slurred Speech
-- Seizures
-- Very High Body Temperature
-- Rapid Heart Rate
-- Heavy Sweating or Stop Sweating
-- Fatigue
-- Nausea or Vomiting
-- Dizziness or Lightheadedness
-- Muscle Spasms or Pain
-- Sudden Rash or Bumps

The Ergonomics of Pulling Cable

Published: Thursday, May 30, 2024

Cable Ergonomics Pic copy 316c8
By Randall C. Resch

It happened day-two of a CHP Tow Operator’s Safety Course. Participants were deep in reality-based training as we were setting up a snatch block and cable to work a typical rollover recovery situated down an embankment.

This scenario required sixty-feet of cable. In preparing for that process, one “experienced tower” activated the wrecker’s “free spool” while another experienced young buck took hold of the winch cable. When free spool was released and with a single cable in the tower’s right hand, the tower turned his larger-than-most sized body at the waist and gave a sizeable “jerk.”

Using over-aggressive core strength to pull cable, his upper body didn’t align in the direction he wanted to go versus where cable was to unspool. His upper body was turned a full quarter and wasn’t aligned with his neck.

At the moment he heaved a mighty tug, a muscle snapped in the right-side of his neck. Based on the look of his face, pain was immediate causing him to stop dead in his tracks. We discovered that the winch’s cable was stuck between strands.

A Little Too Late

I’ve watched the industry make leaps and bounds through the years. I’ve learned to know that this industry is definitely “young person’s work,” in which the years of activity have taken its toll on my physical state. Pulling cable is an easy and painless process, but only if the process is understood.

Because this industry is physically demanding, some lessons are learned in a timely manner. “Cable Ergonomics” isn’t one of them. If you’ve never experienced a pulled neck muscle, pain is immediate and extremely hard to deal with. Sometimes, neck pulls or strains take weeks for pain to subside, even longer to get back into the full swing of fluid motion.

Because this work is physically challenging, it’s tough on one’s physique. So, let this narrative focus on the art of pulling (winch) cable hoping you’ll avoid an upper torso injury in the future. While it might not seem a big deal to the young and restless, there comes a moment in every tower’s career when they’re injured by the simple task of pulling cable, be it to the neck, shoulder, elbows, or to one’s back. It’s important to know what proper techniques help to stay injury free.   

It Went “Twang”

A pulled neck muscle can deliver immediate, debilitating pain. As explained by, Dr. Rahul Shah, MD, a board-certified orthopedic spine and neck surgeon at Premier Orthopedic Spine Associates in Vineland, New Jersey, the two most common muscle pulls (commonly called, “Strains”, are to the neck’s, “Trapezius,” and or the, “Levator Scapulae,” muscles. 

Dr. Shah says, “Typically, they can occur when working past fatigue, overuse, or simply pulling beyond the muscle’s capabilities. Oftentimes, it is an innocuous movement that follows a series of heavy movements, which tends to push the muscle past its limits.”

Regarding a pulled neck muscle, most persons, male or female, don’t typically have weak neck muscles. Neck muscles work hard to keep that “bowling ball on a stick” upright to one’s body. But, for weight lifters, over reachers  who turn too fast, or “straining” during physical activities, neck pull or strain is possible.

Protect the Pull

When it comes to “neck injuries”, they’re oftentimes caused by the (poorly wrapped) condition of the tow truck’s winch cable, or a winch that’s doesn’t free spool easily. Cable that’s “bird nested” tends to wrap over itself, or cable gets jammed between strands of wrapped cable.

For unsuspecting tow operators, when it’s time to pull cable, the mass of one’s body weight likely goes one direction while cable stays stuck and unable to roll freely. That’s about the time a painful “neck twang” takes place.

While tow truck activities aren’t listed in the Journal of American Medicine, consider these tips to help avoid painful injuries caused by pulling cable during winch out scenarios:

-- Release the winch’s free spool lever or air-release to ensure cable spools (out) easily without hesitation
-- With gloved hands, pull only one cable at a time
-- Grasp cable with both hands at the cable’s hook
-- Pull the cable’s hook at belt buckle level with elbows tucked tight to the hips
-- Using the body’s “core strength muscles”, move backwards facing the tow truck’s boom, carrier’s winch, or location where the winch is mounted
-- With each step rearward, pull additional cable (at waist level) and repeat slowly using guarded motion while stepping rearward
-- Don’t hurry or jerk (pull) the cable
-- Avoid tripping; be aware of surface obstacles, debris, or potholes
-- Pull enough cable to reach the casualty
-- As far as the tower who injured his neck during training, he was forced to take four weeks off until cleared by his doctor. Although his injury was covered by Worker’s Comp, the company was without his day-to-day participation.

Notably, from a risk management standpoint, it makes good sense to discuss the simple task of pulling cable during training sessions.    

Operations Editor Randall C. Resch is a retired, veteran, California police officer, former tow business owner and industry advocate. As consultant and trainer, he authored and teaches tow truck operator safety courses approved by the California Highway Patrol. For 51-years, he has been involved in the towing and recovery industry. In 28-years, he has contributed more than 700-safety focused articles for American Towman Magazine, TowIndustryWeek.com and is a frequent seminar presenter and beauty pageant judge at tow shows. In 2014, he was inducted to the International Towing and Recovery Industry Hall of Fame, was the 3rd recipient of the industry's "Dave Jones Leadership Award," and is a member of American Towman’s Safety Committee.

Email Randy at rreschran@gmail.com.

June 12 - June 18, 2024

Vintage Gold

Published: Wednesday, June 12, 2024 1 3f61c

By George L. Nitti

In 1959. Wayne Plunske, the founder of Plunske’s Garage in Wallingford, Ct., purchased a red and black ’41 Dodge power wagon with a Holmes 440. It would go on to become a classic, like many at Plunske’s Garage.

Plunske, who passed away in 2015 at the age of 87, started the business in 1949, leaving his 2 sons, Dan and Jim, to carry on his legacy of collecting and maintaining a fleet of classic tow trucks that continue to be used today.

Jim Plunske said, “My father started the towing business to bring cars into the garage for repair. As the towing business grew, he saw that it had a life of its own and kept adding to the fleet. He was one of the first to own a flatbed in ’73.”

Regarding the ’41 Dodge, he said, “In the days before power lifts, hand cranks were used to lift the vehicles onto the trucks. By ’65, the cranks were replaced by an early Holmes unit, and then again replaced in 1990 with the 440 where an electric front winch was added.”

With a fleet of 42 trucks, more than 20 of them are classics, enhancing their image and setting them apart from their competition.

Plunske said, “People think it’s cool. Anybody can buy a new truck. These trucks are well taken care of, like kids.”

His father’s favorite was a 1955 Ford F250. Plunske said, “It was a wreck chaser because it had a 390 Thunderbird engine. Back in the day, the first tow truck on scene got the work.”

A couple of other classic units in their fleet include a WWII vintage ’41 Diamond T, used for hauling tractors, which has two axles on the back, and a ’58 International with a 40-ton Weld Built Boom.

The company takes pride in keeping their fleet in tip top shape.

Plunske said, “My father was a navy man. If it didn’t move, he painted it. He always liked things painted and clean.”

Brag @ TIW! Should your truck be featured here? Send a few pics and your contact information to the editor at georgenitti@gmail.com. You might even be selected to go in print, too, in American Towman magazine!


Memorial Day Tribute Truck Honors Veterans from American Wars

Published: Monday, May 27, 2024

vietnamwar 0d2a4

By George L. Nitti

On Memorial Day, it’s most fitting to give tribute to the men and women who died serving our country.

Bee-line Transport, Inc., of Lynchburg, Virginia, in the vein of an earlier tribute wrecker dedicated to first responders and the military, pays homage to Memorial Day with their 2020 T880 Kenworth with a 40-ton NRC wrecker, which paints a rich tapestry of scenes that includes veterans, monuments, family members and other symbology dedicated to this solemn cause.

Marketing Director Leah Jones, daughter of Bee-lines Kevin Jones, said, “This truck focuses on all veterans who have fallen in the line of service.”

Serving as a mural on wheels, a montage of images on both sides of the wrecker captures poignant scenes honoring their lives.

Jones said, “There is a lot going on. Every time you look at it you notice something else going on.”  

It’s not important where you start, because before you know it you are enmeshed in these stories that span generations of American Wars.

For the Jones family, having two service members enshrined on the truck is a source of great pride.

Jones said, “On the passenger side above the rear wheels, you will see the images of my Dad’s dad and my Mom’s dad, who both served in the 2nd World War.”

Close to them is Lynchburg’s Monument Terrace, a memorial giving tribute to Lynchburg’s fallen spanning different wars.

“Each landing pays tribute to a different war,” said Jones.

Also on the passenger side, moving towards the sliding wrecker's center, other key images include a regiment of soldiers transporting the casket of a fallen soldier, a battalion of D-Day soldiers sitting together in front of the National V-Day Monument, and 3 soldiers fighting in Vietnam, where more than 58,000 were lost. Enhancing this imagery are symbols like the American stars and bursting poppy flowers that line the bottom perimeter of the rotator.

Jones said, “I love the flowers. It’s one of my favorite details. Poppy flowers are a symbol of veterans. It was designed by Brooke Hill. She pulled the inspiration from her father.”

On the other side, a marine dressed in formal uniform, is folding a flag, and next to him is a military man playing taps with Arlington Cemetery the backdrop. Yes the eye keeps moving, across the body of the wrecker, sometimes resting on wording found on the unit, such as  “20 Veterans die each day of suicide. Over 30,000 veterans have died of suicide since 2001" or the 14,000 Prisoners of War who also gave their life.. 

A tribute like none other, this unit stands out to majestically honor the men and women who served and died giving to the cause of freedom.

Climbing Higher, Powered by Family

Published: Wednesday, May 22, 2024

419579055 691903059757144 7579273976008148340 n ec601
By George L. Nitti

A good logo and slogan are critical parts of the mix of elements that comprise company graphics and promote customer interest and loyalty. In Southern Florida, where Alpine Towing resides with seven locations, one might wonder why a company would embrace a name suggesting the mountains, when they tow mainly on the Florida plain. 

However, Larry J. Saravia, owner of Alpine Towing Inc, whose fleet has exceeded 60 trucks, attributes his mountain logo to company success, a symbol for what he saw himself becoming as a tow boss.  

Saravia recounts first starting out in the business, stating, “When we started out, those were the years of the yellow pages. We wanted our company to be found under the letter A. I struggled coming up with something and just as I was about to quit, Alpine popped into my head. The designer told me ‘Alpine means one of the tallest mountains.’ I said ‘That’s great man. Cause that’s what I want to be. Big!” 

Over the years, staying consistent with that image, Alpine has continued to showcase its logo on their sharp looking tow trucks. 

“When people see the mountains, they know it’s Alpine,” said Saravia. 

The huge fleet included a recent line of new 2023 Hino 21 foot with Jerr Dan rollbacks that were wrapped by Razor Wrap Designs of Fredericksburg, Virginia, drawing on the skills of artist Mark Long, who has done numerous designs for the towing industry. 

Saravia said, “I take my trucks from Miami to Virginia to get them wrapped. They do a phenomenal job from the material they use, to the way they wrap and the extra things they do without us asking. They do things and don’t tell you this is going to be extra. They just do it.” 

Also found on the trucks are green swirling stripes against a black background. The combined imagery causes people to turn their heads, stare at the truck and take pictures of it, according to Saravia.  

Also important for Saravia is that his tow operators have trucks they are proud to drive. 

“I know what a driver needs and what a driver wants and I know how a driver feels.” 

At the same time, his drivers are expected to keep their units clean and carry a shirt inside the truck to wipe down the insides. 

Also critical to this company’s fortune is their catchy slogan - “Powered by Family.” 

Saravia said, “I followed in my grandfather’s footsteps, who had a lot of businesses. He had a lot of integrity and taught me to be transparent with customers and to give 100%, no matter the size. I’m a second generation tower and my son will be 3rd generation. If you are our customer, we treat you like family.  

homediv
June 12 - June 18, 2024

All-New ZEON XD Winches

Published: Wednesday, June 12, 2024

warnproduct copy fffa1
Warn Industries has introduced the all-new ZEON XD winches for trucks and SUVs, marking a significant upgrade from their previous ZEON winch model. Leveraging over a decade of experience, the ZEON XD is part of Warn's Premium Series and is designed, engineered, tested, and assembled at their ISO-quality-certified facility in Clackamas, Oregon. This winch features a new high-performance electric motor and gear train, achieving a best-in-class line speed of up to 40 ft/min.

The ZEON XD is available in two capacities, 10,000 lb. (ZEON XD 10-S) and 12,000 lb. (ZEON XD 12-S), both equipped with Spydura synthetic rope. The winch boasts enhanced IP68 and IP69K waterproof ratings, corrosion-resistant fasteners, full-metal armor for protection, and the most efficient three-stage planetary gear train to date. Additionally, it includes a corded waterproof remote and HUB wireless receiver for remote control via the WARN HUB app.

For durability and reliability, the ZEON XD features a large-diameter aluminum-alloy drum to reduce stress on the rope, the strongest through-drum rope attachment, and an ultra-reliable Albright contactor for electrical control. The winch also offers a limited lifetime warranty on mechanical components and seven years on electrical parts, supported by Warn's global service network.

For more information, go to https://international.warn.com/

Bi-Directional Pneumatic Air Hammer

Published: Tuesday, May 21, 2024

airstrike small 48555

The AIRSTRIKE -  Bi-directional Air Tool. From fleet repairs to heavy equipment, its 3,000 blows per minute deliver maximum power. 

Durable, compact, and loaded with accessories, this is the ultimate pneumatic hammer and puller you need in your tool kit.  

Applications 

Quickly pull stuck fuel injectors 

Remove diesel/gas NOx & particulate sensors 

Pull stubborn oil tubes & stuck oil seals 

Attach to locking pliers for popping stuck fasteners and more 

Loosen hydraulic fittings 

Remove stubborn nuts and bolts without thread galling 

Remove harmonic balancers 

Bust seams of spot welded bonded panels 

Hem narrow window flanges

View more details here: https://steckmfg.com 

 

I-Tow App

Published: Monday, March 25, 2024 itowapp 95b03

itowapp2 3f83c
homediv
homediv
homediv
June 12 - June 18, 2024
Show More
homediv
June 12 - June 18, 2024

Auto Loan Delinquency Continues to Rise  

Published: Wednesday, May 01, 2024

A study by attorneys at Thompson Consumer Law Group analyzed 2022 and 2023 auto loan data from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York to see which states had the highest percentage of auto loan balances delinquent for more than 90 days. Their results showed it’s not only a problem everywhere but it’s increasing. 

Between 2022 and 2023, the percentage of auto loan balances over 90 days delinquent in America increased from 3.81% to 4.2%, and every state experienced an increase.  

The study showed these states with the highest percentage of auto loan balances delinquent: 

Mississippi: 6.77; Alabama: 6.05%; Georgia: 5.71% Louisiana: 5.69%; Indiana: 5.29%; Hawaii: 5.24%; Michigan: 5.24%; Delaware; 5.2%; South Carolina: 5.2%; North Carolina; 5.14%. 

A lending officer at Michigan First Credit Union says he sees delinquent payments steadily climbing.  

Jeff Fitrzyk, their chief lending officer, said, “We’re also seeing an increase in repossessions, both voluntary and involuntary,” he added, noting people are dealing with inflationary pressures that demand their immediate attention and one of the things that often falls behind are auto loans, which seem to be returning to their pre-COVID levels. 

Source: www.macombdaily.com

Towman Murdered in Florida 

Published: Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Towman Juan Garcia, 39, owner of JL Towing, was murdered late Wednesday, April 10, in what police authorities are investigating as a connected crime involving another woman who was carjacked and murdered as well.  

Garcia was killed at a house just before 10 p.m. Wednesday night. It was one day before Katherine Aguasvivas was kidnapped in a separate crime. At the house, Orange County deputies said more than 100 10 mm shell casings were found. WESH2’s Tony Atkins personally saw more than 80 markers from just outside the house and crime scene. 

Seminole County Sheriff Dennis Lemma said the green Acura seen in the kidnapping video showing was the same vehicle Garcia and his company towed from an Orange County apartment complex at some point last month. 

Lemma also said rounds both in Garcia’s murder and where Aguasvivas’ body was found in Osceola County matched one another. 

“At the scene, there are more than 100 rounds, but a good percentage of those rounds on the ground are 10 mm, the gun used in the murder of our victim that we found burnt up in the vehicle in Osceola county,” Lemma said. 

At last check, the suspect or suspects in the Taft shooting are still on the run. 

Source: wesh.com

Florida Repo Driver Shot During Repossession 

Published: Wednesday, January 31, 2024

Last Thursday, a repo driver in Port St. Lucie was allegedly shot six times after trying to repossess a vehicle. 

The agent, 28-year-old Tristan Hastings, attempted to repossess a vehicle where he encountered 59-year-old Omar Sueque. 

As can be seen on video, Sueque placed himself between his car and the tow truck yelling, “Hey, get out, this is private property,” and “I have cameras here.” Undaunted, Hastings can be seen ignoring the borrower and edging his truck further back toward the car. 

Infuriated, Sueque can be seen charging up to the truck and punching Hastings through the open truck window. Equally outraged, Hastings leapt from his truck and chased after Sueque. 

Repossessions Inc. owner Bill Kelly watched the video and said that he was surprised that the tow truck driver followed Sueque. 

“What did he get out of the car for and chase the guy? He should have just continued with what he was doing and left,” Kelly told them. “I’ve had people, a pregnant woman, lay down between the car and the tow truck. Obviously, you get out of Dodge, you don’t want to be involved in a situation like that.” 

Tre Smith of Off the Chain Towing and Recovery said that he cut his workday short Thursday after he heard about the shooting. 

“It’s a little too close to home,” Smith said. “I’m on my way to do the same thing, so can I make it back home?” 

” My heart goes out to him, and his family and we offer our condolences,” Smith said. 

Source:curepossession.com

Decatur, Alabama Considering Banning Night Time Repos

Published: Tuesday, December 19, 2023 After two men were killed involving repossessions in Alabama, city leaders in Decatur are considering banning repossessions at night.

The first deadly incident occurred in September involving Stephen Perkins, who was shot and killed by police in Decatur after his car was subject to repossession. Three officers have been fired as a result of that deadly confrontation that took place in the presence of the repo driver.

Last Wednesday, tow owner Jason Click was shot and killed in Huntsville, Alabama during a night time repossession.

Both incidents are galvanizing change.

Billy Green, executive director of the Alabama Towing and Recovery Association, indicated that their organization may need to turn to lobbyists to advocate changes that will make repossessions safer.
He said, "We may need to look at the laws on the books and what protections there are for the repossessor."

State Senator Arthur Orr has been following Decatur's situation closely saying he's committed to finding a solution to prevent further tragedies.

"I think it's important that we do look at how we are doing the repossessions and if another state or municipality has a better or safer option out there that they have put in the code to improve the safety and de-escalate the potential for violence, that's something we need to look at."

Source: www.youtube.com
Translate Page
Contact Us
© 2024  Tow Industry Week/American Towman Media, Inc.         . .