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Free service provides Houston-area drivers with access to no-cost towing services


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More than 188,000 free tows provided to local drivers since May 1, 2018


Most people in the Houston-Galveston area would agree that driving across town isn’t necessarily the best part of your day.

In addition to what feels like daily nonstop, relentless traffic, there are a number of things that can go wrong at any moment: a flat tire, a mechanical breakdown, a vehicle that runs out of gas, or any number of other unplanned and unbudgeted vehicle failures.

As a Houston-area driver, any one of these can or will happen at some point, and you can expect it to throw a wrench in your day.

Because there is so much that can happen on our highways at any given moment, every driver who gets on our region’s roadways should know they have access to no-cost towing through a local program called Tow and Go, which has been operational since May 1, 2018.

“It was created to improve stranded motorist safety by quickly removing them from the freeways to a safe location,” said David Fink, Traffic Safety program manager with Houston-Galveston Area Council.

In addition to keeping motorists on the move and traffic flowing, the quick clearance that the Tow and Go program provides also reduces the chance of dangerous secondary incidents, which can ultimately save lives.

“Only Tow and Go operators are responsible for towing, which eliminates multiple tow trucks showing up at a crash site of breakdown and ultimately leading to more congestion on the highway,” Fink said.

Tow and Go is making a difference

According to Fink, between May 1, 2018, and Dec. 31, 2023, Tow and Go safely performed 188,575 tows -- an average of about 2,700-3,000 tows each month.

“More tows are performed during the summer months,” he said.

Fink provided a few interesting notes about Tow and Go encounters:

  • About 66% of tows are found by wreckers.
  • About 66% of tows are mechanical failures, while 34% are flat tires.
  • In the more than five years of service, Tow and Go has recorded and helped intervene in 43 medical emergencies.

There have been several other instances, Fink noted, when Tow and Go has been helpful to motorists. For example, a potential kidnapping was thwarted, and other motorists stranded in the extreme heat of summer have been rescued, just to name a couple.

How Tow and Go works

If you’re wondering how you can use this program, it’s simple. Tow and Go operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, including all holidays. Drivers don’t have to be a resident of the area, just driving on our roads. The free service is available through funding provided by the Federal Highway Administration and the Texas Department of Transportation.

Tow and Go operators are available to step in when there is a mechanical failure of a vehicle and provide a free tow to a safe location. Once safely off the highway, operators are also able to simply change a flat tire, if you have the necessary equipment and a spare in good working order.

It is important to note that there are circumstances in which a vehicle can be towed but not for free. These include vehicles that have been:

  • Abandoned
  • Flooded
  • Involved in a crash or an incident that has required law enforcement. In this instance, the vehicle can be towed following the investigation of the incident.

How you can reach Tow and Go

You never know when an emergency can happen. Below are several ways you can access a free tow with Tow and Go.

  • Access Tow and Go on the Texas Connect Smart app or the Houston TranStar app. Click on the tow truck icon on the screen to contact Tow and Go.

To learn more about Tow and Go, click or tap here.



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