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rreschran last won the day on October 6

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About rreschran

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    Hemet, California (Riverside County) USA

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    Randall Resch Training & American Towman Magazine

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  1. Thanks you guys for your comments. And, also notice ... the Tow Police aren't so quick to put their two-cents worth here in this professional conversation. R.
  2. ... sometimes it's about educating the PD in what's best for their evidence needs. I agree with you ESC.
  3. If you're following national news, the industry's Tow Police are questioning a Florida's tow company's use of dollies and whether or not an evidence vehicle should be entered? There's plenty of footage showing a wheel-lift wrecker towing away a Mustang on dollies. As a retired police investigator and life-long tower, I teach a course called, “Forensic Evidence in Tow Operations,.” Tow operators should know simple basics required when responding to evidence calls, but, not all tow operator's are provide this training. Lots of tower’s comments on industry forum sites are correct and some towers seem to know that techniques and methods are proper. In my opinion, for investigations of similar magnitude, there’s no reason to enter a vehicle’s interior and no reason to touch anywhere on the vehicle’s body. In the Florida case, a carrier wasn’t used as a four-tire inspection is likely to be closely scrutinized. Careful application of ratchets and straps to the wheel-lift and dollies is proper. Assuming there are no keys in the ignition, the front steering shouldn’t require tie-down when set into dollies. A dollied car doesn’t need shifting nor does the E-Brake matter. Find out what areas of evidence are being considered? One solid point that was missed by the towers … because this is a HUGE homicide investigation, the FBI was following behind (escort) where no extension lights should be used in-areas that may compromise evidence especially on trunk hoods and doors. Also note that; in police work, there’s a difference between the, “Letter of the Law”, and the, “Spirit of the Law.” Are extension lights and safety chains required by law? Sure. But, how many incidents and accidents do towers respond where they’re asked to do something opposite the law (loading a car upside down, using the shoulder, U-turn’s on highway, center-divider cross-thru’s etc?) Regarding safety chains and extension lights regarding lawful towing … let the investigator instruct you. Protecting forensic evidence is about handling vehicles with minimal effort and disruption that may contaminate potential evidence. Where police investigators follow agency protocol and provide instructions, evidence towers are obligated to follow instructions to the letter. I'm a firm believe that no vehicle need be entered unless instructed by the lead investigator. A single, serious, improper action caused or created by a tow operator could be a determining factor that compromises evidence only to ends in a non-conviction should the tow operator step outside the investigation’s “Chain of Custody” or an unintended destroying evidence. From my view in the cheap-seats, I’d say Talon’s Towing followed protocol right down to their latex gloves. Nice work guys. But, don't forget what happened when the Al's Bronco was towed in OJ’s case? What do you think?
  4. Hi Mr. John. Great bit of comments about the tote. Since the 70s I haven't seen another one being used, but have seen several in the scrap pile of their own. I never heard of Harvey Frost so today I learned something new. Thanks for sharing and hugs to Aileen. R.
  5. Hey Jesse … I doubt you’ll find any historical data for the unit. I don’t know it as a major player in the towing industry. But, using it is simple. In the early 1970’s, my Dad’s tow biz had one that I used as a teen to bumper-haul cars in-town that was headed to scrap. The one Dad had was home-made using an old bed frame and square tubing looking very much the same. The tote was scary at best, but got the job done. No matter what the tow sling’s mounted to, attaching the sling and towing with it is the same process as using a wrecker, but it’s a bumper pull unit. The one I used got flat tires all-the-time. But, using a pair of J-hook chains, attaching the sling (to a car) is simple and no different than it being mounted to a wrecker. The one you picture has boat-crank and a small tilting boom for raising and lowering. There’s a bolt that removes to crank the hand-winch, “out”, to lower the “boom” and tilt the sling to the ground. Google the words, “tow sling how-to videos” or “wrecker tow-sling how to video” and watch them all for a simple tutorial. There are several videos that demonstrate pretty good techniques and some that are simply laughable, but they will give you an idea of how they attach. If you’re looking to haul scrap and PLEASE not on the highway, it’s an affordable alternative until you’re ready to upgrade. As far as the price, I personally wouldn’t offer more than $250 - $400 based on age, rust factor, questionable bearings, and age of the turf tires that aren’t really suitable to speed. Not that the unit may or may not be functional; its age suggests it could be risky should something let go, snap or collapse. There's not that much safety in its design to safely raise, hold and haul a heavy car. While I'm not trying being the proverbial Tow Police, these units went the way of the dinosaur because they weren't all that popular ... I can attest the same having used one somewhat like it. Thanks for taking me on a trip down memory lane. Good Luck. R.
  6. I agrea Animosus and salute that Wyoming allows tow trucks to run red and blue combinations. But, in the reality of tower's killed in Wyoming, I only find two towers killed by pedestrian strike since 1922. I'm more inclined to urge big city states to change old lighting laws based on total population and number of vehicles on the roadway. Running any combinaiton of blue shouldn't be an ego-thing in today's world. Wouldn't it be a wonderful start to (at least) try and make this industry more standardized than it's current status? To leave old laws in-place and do nothing is a pathetic response. And, colored lights do not negate the fact that there's a bigger picture going on. I'm all for change where to note the industry has done little to change laws to meet the problems that coincide with SDMO.
  7. Not to impugne Mr Lequesne and Mr Aflack's effort to go after colored lights in tow truck's light bars, this occurred in Canada a few years back and may not have reached all of Canada's provinces. I attended a recent safety summit where a prominent industry personality said, "Tow trucks will never have blue in their light-bars." I challenged his statement by simply asking ... why not? The Government of Saskatchewan introduced and passed legislation to improve safety for tow truck operators. Canada's Traffic Safety Amendment Act permits blue lights to be used in conjunction with amber lights on tow trucks in memory of Canada's, Courtney Schafer, killed in March 2017. Link: https://www.auma.ca/advocacy-services/resolutions/resolutions-index/blue-lights-tow-trucks While blue is said to be reserved for law enforcement, there's solid reasoning how "blue" would help to possibly change a motorist's behavior in the big picture of SDMO. But, the industry, its associations and the whole of tow business owners have failed to lobby, force change and fight to bring change to light bar colors that currently reflect old motor vehicle code laws. Current law doesn't recognize the sheer number of first responders and tow operators killed in on-highway strikes. Combined with the color of blue requires tow operators be formally trained with proof of safety training in their company's file. But remember, with the change in law comes regulation and enforcement right? If my friend Linda Unruh could initiate legislation to honor her son in-creating New Mexico's, "Bobby' Law", in less than one-month, why can't a combination of blue and amber lighting be added to tow truck light bars in other states and provinces? Creating some kind of standard could help lessen the repeated slaughter of tow operators. R.
  8. I've closely watched tow forums regarding recoveries in the wake of Hurricane Ida. I understand that there's "money to be made", but at what risk to safety and survival is to be contemplated? Perhaps this is the place to send a reminder that; flowing water can be deadly noting the Connecticut State Trooper who drowned yesterday having reportedly driven into floodwaters only to be swept away and found downstream outside of his police cruiser. There’s huge risk to health and safety in-entering rapid water and it’s my opinion to let floodwaters’ subside first, and then go get it. Guess what, the danger of being swept away no longer exists and the car most likely will still be there. If water sweeps a #4,000-pound police car away, it certainly will take a #200-pound pedestrian to their death. And, for a fact, a uniformed operator wearing heavy boots and rain gear may barely be able to tread-water if swept away. There’s no job worth dying for. In the next issue of American Towman is my article in-memory of John Elliott Buell, a tow owner operator who drowned in 1942 trying to rescue an unoccupied car. I know that towers take risks all the time, and that perhaps explains why the mortality rates are far higher than other industries … just food for thought. FYI: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9953985/Veteran-Connecticut-state-trooper-50-killed-cruiser-washed-away-floodwaters.html
  9. Christine and I send our prayers to Kelvin's family and to your company. How sad to have had this happen. We wish you peace and healing to know Kelvin won't be missed. R.
  10. Thanks Steve ... Challenge extended. I don't have access to a tow truck or ability to get that tow truck on the highway. That's no excuse and I'm on it. Any other taker's?
  11. Thanks for sharing this video Ron and guys ... thanks for the positive comments. The video is an awesome "training tool." As I insert my "opinion" along with the others, I hope these comments are seen as being constructive and not those from the Tow Police? The safety culture as seen in this video is (in my opinion) hasn't reached the industry's main stream. While the hook-up was quick and focused, I believe it can be refined. In a training mode my well-intended observations are: The Positives: * Over-head emergency strobes on with SDMO intent * This operator appeared trained, focused and worked quickly * Operator dropped wheellift from within truck cab * When departing, operator kept O/head strobes properly to re-enter traffic Considerations: * Should the operator look to see if the E-Brake is set or not? Should that matter ... the initial pull will decide. * Equipment should be stowed on non-traffic side (single box possibility?) * On-highway work requires reflective vest * Operator passes through "pin/crush-zone" several times * Walking with back to traffic * Bending-over and working with back to traffic is impossible to react should a wayward vehicle enter the shoulder * Use TIM-suggested Peek-a-Boo technique to re-enter By not applying full safety tie-down (chains, straps and tail-end lights), yes, it's illegal in most states when you're talking the "Letter of the Law" versus "Spirit of the Law". To that point I'll add, the industry lack's a proper safety focus where there's too much attention placed on bling, extra lighs and equipment. There appears to be a lack of safety training to include a lack of focus in lobbying to change existing laws for tower's serving the highways. The way I see it, the vehicle code puts towers in harm's way by requiring full strapping, safety chains and extension lights. Way back then it didn't matter, but working on-highway situations in today's environment, too much time spent on-scene can be deadly. One prominent tow owner said said, he'll take the ticket versus becoming the next industry statistic, I'll further his sentiment to say, "I'd rather be tried by twelve than carried by six." Accordingly, in my safety courses, I teach towers to work quickly to eliminate deadly exposure by initiating, "Minimal Safety Attachment." Initiate the minimum attachment, and then move forward to a wide-spot, or the first ramp to complete the hook-up process off the highway in any area that provides additional safety. Is it illegal? Yes, per the vehicle code it is. But, it's far safer than being pinned, crushed, crashed, struck or run-over by a distracted or drunk driver. WHen will driver's learn this and when will law enforcment understand that a minimal safety attachment IS an matter of life and death? That in-itself is NOT rocket-science based on the industry's fatality numbers. But. in this tow operator's defense, his ability was commendable, but, if only to change his hookup process when working on the highway, I believe he could have completed the "minimum safety hookup " to shave perhaps a minute off a really fast 3.5-minute hook-up. Maybe, the on-highway hook-up process should be thought of as working to avoid the angry PPI owner and getting the car off-property? For carriers ... the process takes a few minutes more but, should take less than 10-minutes to get that "minimum safety hook-up" and away to a safer location. So, consider this, to win the Gold at the Olympics, you hafta' beat the fastest time. To win the "Gold" in the towing and recovery industry means, "Coming home safely to your loved one's." R.
  12. Geez Ed ... I'm glad you're OK. Personally ... I don't have much faith in vehicle drivers regardless of what vehicle they're driving. This is especially true to the heavy tow operator (in Texas May 2021) who was, "accidentally" backed over when the tower was under the semi-trailer's landing gear. If looking for lesson's learned, perhaps it's best practices to retrace all obvious areas; starting with placing chock blocks under the tractor's tires. As George said ... there's no such thing as a "normal" tow.
  13. To you Zoggie and your comrades, Christine and I send our prayers in support of Tom's loss. No matter where tow operator fatalities occur in the world, we are a brother and sisterhood of professional who continue to serve the motoring public, yet with the highest risk for little return. Thanks Tom for your committment to your company and your community. You are not forgotten. Zoggie, if your people need assistance navigating the process to nominate Tom to be added to the Wall of the Fallen, send me a PM and I'll be happy to assist. R.
  14. Nice controlled, reverse roll with a catch-line Mr. Castro ... just like in-class. R.
  15. With many operators becoming of retirement age, there are many recent events where towers experience a medical emergency and pass away while on-the-job. While towers are that tough breed who don't like doctors, their pre-existing conditions often lead to an untimely death. Not that COvid still isn't a threat, a periodic wellness check may lead to intervention. Christine and I pray for his family and company. So sad. R.
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