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rreschran last won the day on June 8

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About rreschran

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    1st Class Contributor

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    Alpine, California (San Diego County) USA

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    Randall Resch Training & American Towman Magazine

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  1. So sad ... I met him few years ago. Christine and I send our prayers to the Beauchine family. R.
  2. UPDATED: Skyline killer lured tow truck driver at random, coworker says: ‘Anyone could’ve gone up there’ Driver stabbed to death after answering call for help The call came in to Specialty Towing late Tuesday night, from a man who said his car had broken down on Skyline Boulevard near Woodside. The man, who gave his name as Sean, said he needed a tow truck to take him to San Bruno. Sandra Lopez, an administrative assistant with the towing company, said no one at the company knew the location the caller gave was on the same stretch of road where a man had been found stabbed to death the night before. “There were no red flags,” she said. So a dispatcher sent 31-year-old John Sione Pekipaki out to handle the call in one of Specialty’s dark green tow trucks. The call seems far more sinister in hindsight — an apparent ploy to lure the tow truck driver up to an isolated point on the winding road, where authorities say Malik Dosouqi stabbed Pekipaki to death, then tried to drive a car at sheriff’s deputies when they discovered Pekipaki mortally wounded and calling for help. Deputies shot at the car, though they failed to hit the driver. They later arrested Dosouqi, a 26-year-old Pacifica man, after he crashed into a nearby ditch. Prosecutors are expected to charge Dosouqi with Pekipaki’s murder once he is released from a local hospital, where he is being treated for unspecified injuries he sustained Tuesday night. Authorities have not explicitly said Dosouqi is a suspect in the first fatal stabbing on Skyline Boulevard — that of 32-year-old Pacifica taxi driver Abdulmalek Nagi Nasher — but say they are investigating whether the killings are linked, given their similarities. The call to Specialty Towing that Lopez described points to another common thread: the two victims were apparently lured at random. The San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office has not detailed any motive for the killings, and did not respond to a request for comment Thursday afternoon. But a cousin of Nasher, the taxi driver, said he went missing after a customer called him requesting a ride from El Granada to Santa Cruz late Monday night. Lopez said she heard from a friend at another towing company that they had also gotten a call requesting a tow on Skyline Boulevard late Tuesday night, but that the company had been too busy to send a truck. She also said she did not recognize Dosouqi’s name as someone who had a conflict with Specialty Towing in the past. “It was just a random call — anyone could’ve gone up there,” she said. Pekipaki, who lived in East Palo Alto, was working to rebuild his life and attempting to reconcile with the mother of his two children, Viliami, 12, and Pamela, 1, after scrapes with the law that led to a divorce. He joined Specialty Towing in January, Lopez said, and was known around the company as a professional and friendly driver. “He was a really great guy — he was really sweet,” Lopez said. “He was a very hard worker, very willing to go out there and help people.” At some point after Pekipaki left the Specialty Towing lot Tuesday night, he called back to the dispatcher to say he was having trouble finding the stranded driver in the fog, Lopez said. That was the last time anyone at the company heard from him. Authorities said they found Pekipaki near a dirt turnout off of Skyline Boulevard after returning to the scene of Monday’s homicide to search for more evidence. Pekipaki died at the scene. The sheriff’s office told Lopez that the door to Specialty’s truck was found open and the inside was clean, indicating Pekipaki was attacked after he got out. As a driver, Pekipaki handled breakdowns and crashes, as well as requests to tow away illegal parkers — the kinds of calls on which drivers expect to find irate drivers, and are ready for a confrontation, Lopez said. She keeps an aluminum baseball bat propped up next to her desk at Specialty Towing’s offices. But the call for a tow on Skyline Boulevard did not seem like the kind of job a driver would have to be on guard for, she said. “It’s just really sad that his heart was to go out there and help that stranded person,” Lopez said. RESOURCE LINK ---------------------- California reports that a 31-year-old tow truck driver died from injuries inflicted by an individual with known mental issues. While details are not yet known, the victim's brother stated the tow driver was reportedly on a call when stabbed around 11 PM Tuesday night. That stabbing occurred 24-hours after a taxi driver was also stabbed and killed in the same county. It is not yet known if both stabbings were by the same victim or if the crimes were related. As sheriff deputies responded to a call for help and arrived on-scene to help the mortally injured tow operator, a vehicle sped towards deputies. Deputies fired at the vehicle where it lost control and crashed. The vehicle's driver was taken into custody with non life-threatening injuries. As this is an on-going investigation, I choose not to report the victim's name of the company he worked for. According to my archives, this is the 8th, "freakish", tow operator death that wasn't due to typical reasons towers get killed. California and Texas are tied counting 5x tow operators killed this year. Christine and I send our prayers and condolences to the tow company he worked for. Here's a news link. R. http://www.ktvu.com/news/ktvu-local-news/homicide-victim-remembered-as-a-hardworking-tow-truck-driver UPDATED: Homicide victim remembered as a hardworking tow truck driver WOODSIDE, Calif. (KTVU) - A South Bay father, who was killed in a rural road in unincorporated San Mateo County, is being remembered Wednesday night as a hardworking tow truck driver. Authorities said 31-year-old John Pekipaki was found stabbed to death in a remote stretch of Skyline Boulevard Tuesday night. He is the second murder victim who was found on that road in 24 hours. The other victim is 32-year-old Abdulmalek Nasher, a taxi cab driver from Pacifica. Deputies announced 26-year-old Malik Dosouqui of Pacifica is in custody. Authorities are trying to determine if the suspect had prior contact with the two murder victims. A source tells KTVU it appears Dosouqui did not know them. Liki Pekipaki is John Pekipaki’s sister. Sheriff deputies found Pekipaki gravely injured and calling for help around 11 p.m. He later died at the scene. “They said it was a late-night call,” said Liki Pekipaki. “I guess 50 yards from where they were searching the other victim before they heard him.” Deputies were there investigating another homicide from 24 hours prior. The victim is a Yemeni-American cab driver, 32-year-old Abdulmalek Nasher of Pacifica. Nasher also received a work call Monday night. “Both homicides happened in close proximity of each other and both victims died from multiple stab wounds,” said Lt. Stephanie Josephson of San Mateo County Sheriff’s Dept. “Investigators are actively looking into a connection between the two homicides.” Deputies detained 26-year-old Malik Dousouqui of Pacifica after discovering Pekipaki. A source tells KTVU Dousouqui has a mental illness. Deputies said Dosouqui tried to flee and fired at his car to stop him. “The suspect was not hit by gunfire but the vehicle went off the roadway into a ditch,” said Lt. Josephson. “The suspect was taken into custody and is receiving medical care for a laceration to his arm.” “It was foggy up there and he couldn't find the person who called for service,” said Lene Lauese of East Palo Alto. “He told the receptionist he's going to leave and go back to Redwood City.” Pekipaki worked as a tow truck driver for Specialty Towing, a small operation out of East Palo Alto. Lauese works at a tow yard next door and said she last saw Pekipaki Tuesday at 6 p.m. Later that night, he was dispatched to a call. “The person who called for the service is that the person who killed him that I don't know,” said Lauese. Liki Pekipaki said her brother was a caring man, who was loyal to his family and worked hard for his kids. “He was a regular guy just trying to make a life out here,” said Liki Pekipaki. The district attorney’s office has yet to receive the case since the suspect is recovering from his injuries at the hospital. Relatives said Pekipaki leaves behind an 11-year-old son and one-year-old daughter. http://www.ktvu.com/news/ktvu-local-news/homicide-victim-remembered-as-a-hardworking-tow-truck-driver Skyline Boulevard stabbing spree still under investigation https://www.mercurynews.com/2019/06/20/skyline-killer-lured-tow-truck-driver-at-random-coworker-says-anyone-couldve-gone-up-there/
  3. Hi All ... a news video (link below) out of South Africa demonstrates the clear reason tow trucks should NOT respond to calls in an expedite mode. Tow truck (driving) operations are a huge part of our business, yet there is huge risk and responsibility when it come to reasonable and prudent operations. While we all know how important on-time arrival is, blasting through traffic can be a deadly practice. R. https://www.timeslive.co.za/news/south-africa/2019-06-18-watch-tow-truck-bursts-into-flames-after-being-hit-by-police-van-in-kzn/
  4. This is a prime example where daily tow truck inspections and regular, documented maintenance is challenged. The investigators will go about looking at all maintenance records and the inspections that drivers conduct on the day of use. Is your company's inspection process capable of proving no neglect on the vehicle driver's part? Although the company is innocent until proved guilty, there's a huge burden of proof that goes against the grain.
  5. Just a note to share that you don't have to be a runner to participate in this event, Shane Coleman and I walked this last year as a way to try and solve all of the problems in the industry. Although we didn't solve the industry's problems, we spent our afternoon walking to support the museum and its causes.
  6. We send our prayers to those involved. What a horrible tragedy.mi
  7. Hey Brian ... is it possible that California, Texas and Florida tow operators are NOT being adequately trained by the companies where they work? I'll pose this question for all tow companies, "When a new driver is hired, do hiring owners, managers, supervisors, or HR representatives, provide a "reality based" orientation as just how dangerous this industry is? Or ... do they not mention the dangers hoping to not lose the possibility of new hire? In every CHP tow operator safety classes I teach, I include a one-hour module on the dangers of roadside response, not to scare drivers away, but to tell them how they can be smarter in a defensive manner. I firmly believe that towers who get killed working shoulder events are NOT fully trained to those dangers ... including the most recent California tow operator who was killed reportedly working his second day on the job. I have no data to support that theory, yet have hundreds of (archived) tow operator fatalities that suggest their exists a whole lot of "experience" versus that of the new tower on the job. How can a company, in their right mind, send a novice worker into the lion's den? R.
  8. If the van was towed to an impound lot, why would the police have to smash the window out? Lockout tool ... duh. None the less, the smell of a decomposing person is something that's hard to mistake, yet I remember the same smell coming from a car parked in the long-term parking area the San Diego Airport. At the PD's request, I popped the lock, opened the truck, only to find a hundred pounds of rotting meat in the trunk. It's not a homicide until proved a homicide.
  9. While I'm always one to respect police, fire and other officials on-scene, I stick to my guns that I'm the professional tow operator on-scene and it's my job to load or tow in the manner that I'm experienced in doing. Putting hands-on anyone is an unacceptable practice, especially for a fire captain to do so. If the worker was untrained, inexperienced, or flat out flippant, a violent exchange is unprofessional. There may be something that occurred that we're not aware of, but at face value, fire captain's should stick to their line of work and not that of towing and recovery.
  10. Good Michael and Brian have valuable comments regarding the lack of a full safety-mentality in the workplace.Their combined comments from their latest posts resonates on what issues I believe creates and extends untimely fatalities. I believe Brian's direct statement indicated, "It is frustrating that most company training is exactly as you described, more about invoicing and paperwork to assure payment than safe working procedures. When towers do train, and this is not a knock again any of the industry trainers, the focus training on whiz bang procedures for complex recovery not stuff that will keep an employee alive every day." I believe the number one cause of operator deaths is towers working, walking and standing in a live traffic-lane that's on or near the white-line. Formal training by big-box training entities focus too much on product demonstration, how bigger, better, and the baddest heavier equipment can make more money, or how to go after those invoiced dollars. With no disrespect to trainers, vendors and manufacturers, little of their demonstrations or course's focus has anything to do with the errors, mistakes, or negative factors that create tow operator fatality. It may be a reversal of information, but a great percentage of on-highway strikes may have been prevented if the tower did not place themselves in harm's way. Similar to, a large percentage of towers are killed in preventable traffic accidents where the operator's driving actions were the cause of fatal crashes to include not wearing seat-belts. I believe that only a small percentage of operators were killed by equipment failure leading me to think that the entire spectrum of safety focus is lost in translation, little to no retention, and that "I don't give a damn", attitude. But, regardless as to what training (if any) a tow employee receives, it's message of safety and survival in in the mind of the beholder. All the safety training, formal certificates, or years in the trenches do nothing if an individual fails to apply the messages safety training represents. White-line safety training typically isn't a voluntary thing, but oftentimes a mandate by an agency's contract. The numbers of tow operator fatality are staggering and my statistics (1934 to current) incorporates a total of approximately 954-lost souls for any number of reasons including DUI, Tow Truck vs. Train, Shootings, Traffic Incidents, Ejected -No Seat-belts, operator involved industrial accidents and others. Note: I believe there is NO completely accurate fatality list of towers injured or killed, but, there are many lists floating around ... only to simply suggest that fatality rates among tow operators far exceed the fatality rates of other first responders. I've recorded as many as 313-tow operators killed working white-line highway incidents. There's plenty of evidence to clearly show that whatever white-line strategies as taught to industry professionals aren't working ... there's got to be a better way. When it comes to tow operator instruction, I know my audience, but, I feel that the bottom-line of training reverts back to EVERY individual tower and their individual attitude towards heeding the word of training. How each tower applies their actions to the message of safety (at EVERY scenario_ is THEIR responsibility, NOT to blame the boss, NOT to blame a lack of training, NOT to blame the cops, and NOT to blame distracted, DUI, and head-up ass motorists. FACT: The answer to the latter is simple ... drunks and distracted motorists are here to stay. Tow Operators MUST be smart about staying focused on-scene. Sure, it's the industry's responsibility to provide the training tools to every tow operator, but how they apply it is the biggest component of survival. There's too much finger pointing going on, but, towers must take responsibility for their own actions when they drive and when they're boots-to-the-ground. I believe that on-highway protocol via TIM and the highway patrol must change to where traffic gets slowed or stopped for instances that tow trucks prepare to load; perhaps conducting more traffic breaks when situations call for such. Law should be changed where untrained or unqualified tow operators cannot work the highway until they show evidence of an approved safety course. I believe that all tow trucks for highway/freeway service patrol and rotation tow operators should be equipped with a large, visible arrow-boards. Laws should be changed requiring towers to place cones/triangle/flares at every incident in a manner required by FMCSA § 392.22 - Emergency signals; stopped commercial motor vehicles. As we move forward, I too am watching what's being mentioned here. I'd really like to see more of the industry's heavy hitters get involved in this conversations, especially from the industry's side, the insurance community, and that of the varying tow associations. For 85-years now, the towing and recovery industry has FAILED in delivering ways to increase tow operator safety. Anyone worried about operator retention should be worried as to where the next generation of tow truck operators will come from if all they see is an industry that doesn't care. R Brian ... let's talk about ISO ratings for the industry?
  11. Ron … I can’t speak for CTTA, however, I can speak to California training for tow operator training. I am an authorized CHP safety instructor with my own stand-alone, two-day, 16-hour, tow operator’s safety course. The two-day course is 8-hours classroom, then 8-hours of hands-on module. I specifically cover causes that get tow operator's killed while driving tow trucks and as pedestrian workers. Tow operators of all classes must go to refresher training every 5-year regardless of class or experience level. In addition, rotation/contract towers now must also attend or complete on-line, the 4-hour TIM course to go along with their background application. All tow operators serving California’s Freeway Service Patrol are mandated under California Vehicle Code sections 2430.5 and 2436.5, to attend 3-days of topic specific training taught by CHP instructors and specific to highway operations like HERO and Rangers. Currently, there are no requirements for non-contracted tow operators who venture onto the highway to respond for calls or services (mechanics, service technicians or tire companies). It’s my opinion that ALL tow truck drivers should be required by state law that they are trained in topic specific highway related response. Because there are no requirements for non-contracted tow operators here, anyone, regardless of time and experience can come onto the highway to tow, service or do vehicle repairs. Although California mandates training for tow operators, it doesn’t necessarily create a solid safety factor in the tower’s mindset noting that … California leads the industry in tow operator fatalities and struck-by incidents both on the highway and off, next in line being Florida and then Texas. Texas has TDLR requiring state mandated tow operator training.
  12. Regarding California's most recent fatal, it was noted from another post that the tow operator killed may have been newly hired with only two-days on the job? Question: Why would any tow company send an inexperienced tower into the proverbial lion's den until that tower had been thoroughly trained? There's something tragically wrong if that pans-out to be a true statement. I personally believe that ALL tow operators and service technicians (of all trades) must be thoroughly, "highway trained", before being dispatched to calls on high-speed freeways. so owners, what actions do you take to ensure your personnel are thoroughly trained noting that, California's Vehicle Code Section, 2430.5, and its Freeway Service Patrol program, REQUIRES, every FSP operator attend a 3-day, CHP, highway safety course that includes TIM training. May I ask, what are your company's MINIMAL training requirements for on-highway response for new hires and those who claim that they're experienced? Thanks.
  13. Hi John ... it's always so very exciting to hear from you across the pond. I hope you and your business are doing well. Thanks for your comments and I personally won't apologize for offending other towers when it comes to ... as you've so eloquently described ... "self-preservation". Perhaps that's one of the reasons why this industry is behind the curve is because we don't want to hurt anyone's feelings. Will towers ever wake up? Highway related fatalities are traced back to 1934 and the same old pig headed mistakes and actions have resulted in literally hundreds of towers killed. And, Like me and you John, I'm pretty sure most towers have their own "struck-by" stories to tell ... some non-preventable. Like the over-use and abuse of amber-light on all the time, perhaps the current feeling is ... "Nah ... it's just another tower killed ... glad it's not me." I guess we've grown numb to the root causes that continue to get tower's killed, but I'm interested in the tower you talked with about no safety vest. At some point John, if you do talk with the company's owner, please share what his reaction were. Best regard. R.
  14. I commend the Towing and Recovery Museum's decision to support this product and as a step in the right direction to help lessen the number of tow operator fatalities this industry experiences each year. R.
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