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tmac

"but there is almost nothing that can make me feel irresponsible and angry and resentful and powerless and stupid like getting my car towed"

S, its these feelings that make it feel so sucky

imagine if the $75 was, instead
the cost of a dress (although i'm sure a good/fun one costs much more)
that you no longer have
because you "lost it"
going swimming at night with a very cute boy
and so now, even if you still had it (which you don't because you woke up at his house wearing nothing but sweats that said "property of university of maine wrestling and other types of gratification team") it would be ruined because of the swiming (and etc.) you did while wearing it
so there goes $75 down the drain

imagine it like that

small price to pay, eh?

because

although i know the wedding (although likely good) was probably not as good as that

it hightlights the fact that getting towed, which is a natural and "to be expected" cost of living in this stupidly practical world, only feels as bad as it does because it is accompanied by the guilt & etc.

Carolyn Elefant

I don't see how this was your fault at all. You parked in a lot that had many other cars in it and appeared to be part of the reception area. The couple getting married should have put signs up alerting guests that their cars might be towed. Honestly, if the hall did not have its own parking lot with sufficient capacity, the wedding couple should have arranged for valet service - or at the very least, should have asked a friend or relative to stand outside the reception hall to direct guests to parking. Moreover, once you were towed, the wedding couple should have, at its own expense, arranged for retrieval of your car. That's absolutely what I would have done if something similar had happened at my wedding (which incidentally, it did not because even though I was not crazy about the place where I was married, all of the guests were because the service was so outstanding)

If you haven't guessed from this post, one of my peeves is a poorly planned wedding. Too many brides (and yes, it is primarily a "bride" thing) are so busy thinking about what might be the prefect wedding for them that they fail to pay attention to the kinds of details that make weddings perfect for their guests. So stop beating yourself up over this one.

Ranger

What if your car was broken down or you were in an accident? Would you still be crying about this tow fee? Many times I have given a ride home to some one who was broken down or in an accident. As far as $75 goes that is so the owner can pay the driver and also profit from the check. Just like the person who made your dress for $100 and charged you $300. Did you cry about that? We aren't all like this guy was.

tower

You did admit that it was your fault. Most of us towing professionals are very nice guys doing a very tough job. We get called a lot of names by people that are just looking for someone to blame for their mistakes. we don't randomly go looking for cars to tow, we are called there by property owners. You are lucky you were able to retrieve your car that night at his house and not have to go to a city impound lot where the fee would have been much more. Next time pay attention to where you park.

Big Bill

There's always bits and pieces missing from stories like this. I am also a tower and I like to think I have compassion.

But, (and this is a pretty big butt) Everyone thinks we're thieves or crooks. That tower that towed you did so because the property owner called him. Nobody likes having their car towed and they always show up in a bad mood. After a while, we become numb to it.

The rule of thumb is this:

If you don't own the property and you're not ABSOLUTELY SURE, don't park there. In most states, signage is not required and a property owner can have any vehicle towed, even if it's only been there for 5 minutes.

If you're going to the bar across the street, don't park in the 7-11 lot.

If you remember these very simple rules, you will never experience this again. I personally, would much rather tow you because your broken down and requesting me than tow you because you parked on someone else's private property. I make the same amount either way.

joni

my car go towed from the side of a country highway next to a lake. my daughter drove there with some friends. it was also by a campground. they were going to spend the night when they heard alot of engine noise and cop radios. when she got to the road the car was being towed. Along with 60 to 80 others that were already gone. eight hours later when she went to get the car the guy charged her $355.00. Even though the California Highway Patrol had it towed there was no parking ticket. I think the price was illegally high.

Big Bill The Tower

I got a question for you. Do you know what it means to own a piece of property? Do you know what rights come with that property? Do you know what it means to trespass?

That tower was doing his job. He was called by the property owner on whos property you trespassed to remove an abandoned vehicle. If you call the local zoning department and ask them to define an "abandoned" vehicle, they will tell you abandoned is defined by someone leaving their vehicle on someone else's property. It could be there for 1 minute or 1 year and still be defined as abandoned. The vehicle does not have to be there for any established length of time. You broke the law.

As for the other cars you saw parked there. Did you know the owners? Were you absolutely sure they were there for the same reason as you? Maybe you encroached on parking for someone else's business.

If everyone else jumped off the Golden Gate Bridge, would you do it to?

I would be willing to bet that there has been a long standing issue about the property that you parked on and the church that held the wedding services. if you want to blame someone (other than yourself for not taking the time to determine if the property you parked on actually belonged to the church) Try blaming the church organizers.

As far as having you over a barrel, that's just nonsense. We get paid to tow cars. The prices we are allowed to charge for a "non consent tow" are defined in the local statutes and are a matter of law. You parked your car on a piece of property that didn't belong to you, the property owner was obviously offended by this and as is his right, had the offending vehicle removed. I'll bet that when you came through the door of the tow operators office, you weren't smiling at all. Consequently, they determined you were pissed and as such, wanted this transaction to be over as quickly as you did.

Patrolling tow driver

i live in a state where random patrolling/enforcing of private parking is legal, as a commissioned-paid tow driver, i take pride in my job because it is something i do to make an honest living. i consider myself as a professional. $75 is very inexpensive, consider yourself lucky, in my state, that's 50%less than the usual impound fee. as far as "big bill, the tower"'s comment, this person who was towed, accepted blame already, and felt very bad about the whole thing...he or she doesn't need you to go on demoralizing her even more.

p2p

I have met a handful of tow truck drivers who are complete idiots, their IQs are in the double digits, at best. They are scum and their bosses are scum. They don't come assist you when you're broken down. They camp out in certain areas where they can observe people parking and then pounce on the cars when the owner of the car is out of visual range. I have also met a few tow truck drivers who were extremely nice- one of them saved my life.

KM

Horrible Houston Tow Truck Drivers: Today a coworker and I had gone to the nearby church during our lunch hour. On the way back to the car a tow truck cutting across and speeding through the church parking lot nearly ran us over, not even pausing at the corner where my coworker and I were crossing. He and I both had to literally dive out of the way in order to avoid being hit. He did not even apologize and only said, "oops, welI I did not see you," (we were right in front of him) before speeding off again! It is apparent to me that he (and those many like him) will continue to endanger the rest of us until someone does not have the ability to dive out of his way and is killed - and maybe not even then.
He had a car in tow, his license plate was almost completely obscured, there were no company logos, and there was a great deal of smoke emitting from his exhaust. We managed to get the following info before he sped off again leaving us in a cloud of fumes (and my colleague shouting all sorts of unholy obscenities at him):
Maroon colored F350 Diesel tow truck
License plate: TX T07-221
We called in to report the incident but were told that nothing could be done since the parking lot is private property without a speed limit & there were no bodies stuck to the grill. At the very least it was reckless endangerment and failure to yield the right of way to pedestrians! Are tow truck drivers not governed by the same laws as the rest of us? Do they legally have the right to nearly run people off the road, run red lights, drive over medians & go the wrong way down a street just to get to a fender bender where there are already 20 of those awful car vultures blocking the street!?! I just don't understand: if somebody shoots at someone and misses, it is still attempted manslaughter; if a driver nearly kills 2 people, with a big truck while driving recklessly through a church parking lot, no less... Nothing!?! Needless to say, I am beyond furious and don't know where to turn for justice.

Anthony Robertson

Here's a site dedicated to Towing Scum:

http://www.dailyping.com/archive/2000/08/07/

Brandon

A month ago my Girlfriend and I were downtown looking for a place to eat. We were looking for parking and going at about 25 to 30 mph on the street. We put our blinker on to move to the next left lane because a metro bus was rearing right behind us and not stoping for anyone. The vehicle around us for about 3 blocks was the metro bus. We made sure no one was behind us to our left, but as soon as we started veering to the left a Tow Truck hit us which caused us to run into a pole. The Tow Truck which was speeding from the beginning spun out of control and hit a brick wall from a building 100 feet away from us. Luckily we were ok and as soon as I got out I went to check on the tow truck driver. The guy said he was ok and was walking around. I didn't know if he was disoriented or was had been drinking but he was acting peculiar. Anyways, the asshole ends up calling the police which when I was around sounded like he knew the officer personally. The officer came like 3 minutes later and thats when I realized that Tow Truck Drivers and the Cops from downtown Houston were crooked. The cop kept insisting that we were speeding and kept asking us if any one of us had drank alcohol. The cop never went to talk to the Tow Truck Driver. It felt really scary to know that know body was on our side. We couldn't believe what was happening. It was the tow truck driver who was speeding in the first place, but no...The cops were helping him get out of any trouble. What bunch of Scum Bags.

Kendra

I understand that tow comanies believe they are making an honest living, but it's hard to stand behind the ethics of people who tow vehicles because a wheel is touching a line or tow people in spaces that are not clearly marked. On top of this tow truck drivers tend to wait until it's dark and the coast is clear to find their marks and speed off quicly to avoid detection...In other words they operate much like thieves. i'm not talking about the helpful drivers who come to retrieve you car when it's stalled...i'm talking about Roam towing companies that work under shady and often loosely defined contracts with property owners. Tow companies generally operate barely within the confines of the law and get away with so much mostly because of the lack of sufficient oversite by the government. It's time that the government cracked down and stopped allowing this legal car theft to take place.

K. Hill

Victim of 2 legal car thefts in different apartment complexes while visiting friends/family.
total costs over $200

James

I own a Houston wrecker company. Most of you think wrecker services are all bad.

I'm proud to live in a state with PROPERTY RIGHTS! I just had another asshole towed from my private parking space. I think it's funny how so many of you think your so smart, but have no clue you must park legally!

Get a clue people. Yes there are bad people in our business and plenty of good ones. Just like lawyers, doctors, judges and etc.

Stop blamming everyone else for YOUR stupidity!

Most of the wreckers running high speeds are wreck runners! Call Wrecker Inspectors office and file a complaint. After so many complaints they will lose their contract.

As for towing at night like theives, we tow all hours and i'll tow you while you watch, if you can not pay $100.00 to drop it then you will have to go to the storage yard.

P.S. there are more educated people in this business then you know.... Watch where you park!

Dave

From one towing Comp. to another..well said Kendra!!!wish we had parking laws ALLOWING US TO TOW here ..

Pater

I see that whenever someone accuses towing companies of being assholes, someone from a towing company makes an asshole post, confirming the accusations. Hmm, so every tow truck driver I've ever dealt with in real life is an asshole, and everyone posting from a towing company on this board is an asshole in their post, what must this industry be? Total scum. Tow truck drivers, when you respond to this post, I guarantee you'll be doing the same thing, being an asshole. Thanks for proving my point guys.

James

How is stating facts being a asshole? Have you ever considered YOUR the asshole when you come up to a tow truck driver with an attitude????
Try be nice and maybe they will be nice to you. You must be an upset little man in "ALL" aspects of your life.
Yes I will defend my occupation when others talk bad about it. Like I said in my other post, some people are good and some people are bad in every business.

So Pater, did a tow truck driver nail your old lady or what? Not all tow truck drivers are greasy slimmy assholes like you think. Most people have no clue as to what I do. I live in Memorial and my wife and I enjoy the finer things in life. I have two vaction homes paid for. My SEP is pretty much maxed out. I give to several charities in Houston including but not limited to Junior Diabetes, Aids Foundation, March of Dimes and Salvation Army.
I donated much of my free time in New York after 9-11 and also spend many days in New Orleans helping rebuild. Yeah I guess you got me figured out, i'm an asshole!

Funny thing is, you would never call me an asshole in person....

James

How is stating facts being a asshole? Have you ever considered YOUR the asshole when you come up to a tow truck driver with an attitude????
Try be nice and maybe they will be nice to you. You must be an upset little man in "ALL" aspects of your life.
Yes I will defend my occupation when others talk bad about it. Like I said in my other post, some people are good and some people are bad in every business.

So Pater, did a tow truck driver nail your old lady or what? Not all tow truck drivers are greasy slimmy assholes like you think. Most people have no clue as to what I do. I live in Memorial and my wife and I enjoy the finer things in life. I have two vaction homes paid for. My SEP is pretty much maxed out. I give to several charities in Houston including but not limited to Junior Diabetes, Aids Foundation, March of Dimes and Salvation Army.
I donated much of my free time in New York after 9-11 and also spend many days in New Orleans helping rebuild. Yeah I guess you got me figured out, i'm an asshole!

Funny thing is, you would never call me an asshole in person....

James

How is stating facts being a asshole? Have you ever considered YOUR the asshole when you come up to a tow truck driver with an attitude????
Try be nice and maybe they will be nice to you. You must be an upset little man in "ALL" aspects of your life.
Yes I will defend my occupation when others talk bad about it. Like I said in my other post, some people are good and some people are bad in every business.

So Pater, did a tow truck driver nail your old lady or what? Not all tow truck drivers are greasy slimmy assholes like you think. Most people have no clue as to what I do. I live in Memorial and my wife and I enjoy the finer things in life. I have two vaction homes paid for. My SEP is pretty much maxed out. I give to several charities in Houston including but not limited to Junior Diabetes, Aids Foundation, March of Dimes and Salvation Army.
I donated much of my free time in New York after 9-11 and also spend many days in New Orleans helping rebuild. Yeah I guess you got me figured out, i'm an asshole!

Funny thing is, you would never call me an asshole in person....

william pettit

LIFE AND TIMES OF TOW TRUCK OPERATERS

For anyone who's interested in the life of a tow truck driver and family read on.

I've often wondered why a person goes out gets drunk and at the very best if
their lucky they will get the vehicle they were driving impounded. I'll let you use
your imagination at what the worst could be.
Then for some reason still a mystery to me they use their one
phone call to call every family member,friend, neighbor,or whoever they can get to
listen that the vehicle is impounded.
If i get the impound call from the local police department at 2:17 a.m. i can bet
by 2:30 a.m. i'll have twenty more calls. Everyone wanting to know what
they have to do to get that car that was impounded released.
Ten of them will claim that they are the registered owner of the vehicle.
Four of them will be a friend, and the rest who knows.
They all have the same question. How much?
Well i try to make it easy. This much for the tow,this much for
storage,this much for an after hour release,plus taxes.
Then always comes the second question.Well how much to get it out right now?
Sorry to have to inform them that we don't keep a calculator in bed with us.
They seem to think that 24 hour towing means your office hours are 24 hours too
i guess.They must not realize that we have a family life too.
It reminds me of the limo service i towed for when their driver was in an
accident.He called my wife three to four times within a twenty minute period before
she finally exclaimed well the driver is not here in bed with me so he must still
be out on the call.
Sorry was one of them things you had to be there.anyway you can't help
but wonder where were all these people when their bud was out doing whatever
they were to get into trouble.Then when it comes time to meet face to face with
whoever the vehicle is to be released of course it was all our fault that the/their
vehicle was impounded.
Now i know your wondering if this is so terrible,why do it?
Well once in a great while you get a phone call where someone has a flat or out of fuel or
better yet they've locked their keys in their car and their two year old is inside.
The feeling you get when you get the car open and see the look on that mothers
face when she picks heer child up makes all the other stuff worth while.

Chino from Richmond

See, here's the thing. THEY DON'T KNOW that your office hours are not 24 hours. To average Joe Blow citizen, 24 hours means OPERATIONAL 24 hours. It's best not to assume that the towed public knows the in's and out's of the job.

I've worked security in the Richmond Metro area for over 7 years, and on many occasions, have worked with patrol towers. THEY ARE ALL CROOKED SCUM AND CRIMINALS. There's better people in Bail Bonds around here.

My vehicle has now been illegally stolen by tow truck operators from the lots of two apartment complexes I was a resident of a total of 6 times in the past 2 years. Many of my neighbors have suffered the same fate. It is WIDESPREAD at these places, and WHY you might ask? Not because they all parked in a wrong space or fill in the blank. It's because these drivers are thieves, Towing for the slightest of infractions, or for no reason at all.

To the tow operators on here. PLEASE bear in mind that there really are two very different types of operators, ASSISTANCE and PATROL. You know, and I know that the vast majority of the unwashed convicts in the business are in the Patrol sector.

joebob

I have an issue with towtruck services. 1st I will admit I recently parked in a lot that had posted a no-parking sign. I came back to my car and it was hooked up to a tow-truck. It cost me $140 (cash) to get it dropped.

1st I feel like I was paying these guys blackmail money. Oh and let me add in their pocket - non reportable income. Additionally there were multiple cars being towed. The supposed supervisor of this group gave me a reciept for the $$, but I imagine this is just a dummy reciept.

I would like to know what is a common charge to drop a car. Also these so called 'tow contracts' with parking lots. It's just a scam the tow companies pay the lot owner to legally tow cars.

I don't think all tow truck drivers or tow companies are scum but I would say 3 out of 4 are!!!

I would like to give the mayor of Houston a piece of my mind for giving tow services free reign of the city.

Way to go Bill White. You will see me voting and supporting for your opponent in the next election.

Deni Brooks

My husband is a tow driver and he would never think about being a money pig. He spends most of his day picking up wrecks that dumb drivers make. And he does not make much from them. About 10 years ago when he stared we worked for a company that lived for privet parkers (the nice way to say dumb drivers that cant read posted signs). And if you are not a coustomer then you are braking the law, that is thier right to have you towed. Think about it, if he has 20 spots and five of you are at the company next door then he has five people drive away with money that he needs to stay open. So, when you get towed.... dont take it personal, he already did.
And tow drivers are only doing the job that you have created by being selfish and not caring to others.

Wanda

The only income that has to be reported is that of which a recipt was given. All tow tickets are invoiced by law. And the law states that they do not have to give a recipt on drop fees unless a person asks for one. When it comes to the PUC rules there are still alot of gray laws and they can work to the tow companys avantage but most of the time the law works in the motorist favor. Golden Rule for all people to live by ....If it cost you more then $50 then ask for a recipt no matter what item you bought or service you payed for. Then you know the income was reported. And you have consumer rights.

James

All tow truck drivers aren't scum. But it's the few that give them a bad name. I had a friend work at a company that has a sign posted out front. He ran in the building to pick up a package. As soon as i came out he had one side of the van hooked up. He told him that he was just in the building for minute and had left the truck running to pick up a package . He didn't care and came to the other side to hook the truck up. All he had to do was unhook the truck but all he can say is that it will be $100 dollars. Before he can hook the rest of the van up to the lift, my friend pulled off. He moved up so he could unhook the chain from the bottom himself. The guy jumped in the truck with my friend to stop him from moving up. He started out by being nice to the tow truck driver, but he turned out to be a butt whole. The driver wouldn't let him unhook the chain so he just drove to the top of the hill and unhooked them himself. My point is i know he has a job, but they waite out front of this building and prey on inocent people trying to do their job. It was only a minute and he was trying to tow the truck while it was running. The tow truck driver didn't even hook it up to pull it on to the truck yet but he wanted the man to pay $100 dollars. Some tow truck drivers are out for the money. I never seen them towing a UPS van picking up a package.

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