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Re: Approximately Tally - Tow Operator Fatalities 2019

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Hi All ... I spent time today counting and catorgizing tow operator fatalities for 2019. My data include domestic and international incidents where towers were killed in on-duty accidents or incidents. These numbers are based on how I recorded them from the information received. They are approximate to the total numbers of tow operator's killed worldwide and taken from reporting sources that are not the world's total. These numbers are accurate to the information received. A noticible increase that I counted for the year were those industrial accidents that involved runaway/rollaway vehicles, snapping cables, conducting flat-tire changes, forklift driving off a carrier's deck, and crushed by a raised carrier's deck. There's an obvious need for training in all areas that involve flatbed carriers with special focus on the dangers of free-spool. White-line shoulder incidents are average with past year's. Also, there was a huge increase in safe vehicle operations (driving and traffic accidents). The numbers below for driving and accidents include he tragic drowning accident that took the lives of Shalvenish and Roselyn Sharman,of Justin's Towing in Sacramento. Texas this year surpassed California for the most tower's killed and count nearly 50-percent higher than they were last year. But the biggest, most noticible change for 2019 were the result of violence against tow operators. For the year, 12x tow operators or tow business owners were killed by crimes of violence (shot, stabbed, choked to death). Of those twelve, x were the result of South Africa towing's turf wars. Seven deaths occurred in the US during activities of releasing vehicles, shot from hotel room, ealing with intoxicated persons, Philadelphia's drive-by,or suspected street robbery. Scroll down and to see my end of the year stats.


White-Line/Shoulder                      17

Driving & Accidents                        22

Industrial                                        13

Medical Events                                 3

Drownings                                       2

Shot/Stabbed/Choked to Death      9

                                           Total     64X including International            51X Stateside



Monday                15

Tuesday                10

Wednesday           10

Thursday               14

Friday                      7

Saturday                 5

Sunday                   8



States& Canada

TX                  11

CA                   9

MD                  4

CANADA         3

AL                   3

FL                    2
PA                   2


As noted, my numbers represent information that I've collected throughout the year. For others who have collected numbers like these, I salute your committment, diligence, and the time you've taken to archive these industry events. Without your participation, we wouldn't be able to determine future focus on what areas need new, repeated, or remedial industry training. I'm a firm believer that, if we could get the word of the importance of training, safety and survival out to the industry's towing community, the number of repeated deaths could go down. In that, I think it's each participant's responsibility to help spread the word about the importance of being on these forums. For the new year, what can you do to bring others to TowForce or lead others to a better awareness of the dangers tower's face. I'll tell you for fact ... the motoring public doesn't care about you and your work. Every tower HAS to step-forward and apply their best practices on EVERY call EVERY day. I've said that a million times, and it's one statement that should keep repeating itself. ANd to tag on a comment made by Moore's in an earlier post, wouldn't it be nice to NOT hear of another tower killed this year? One can only hope.,

I wish you all a very safe and prosperous New Year. Best Regards.       R.   

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Randall C. Resch

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Here is a list that has been floating around Facebook today. Not sure how accurate it is or who complied it, though it does appear to be complete. Keep in mind it is lacking details, so I plan to work on that if I can find the time. Many of these stories I am sure are saved here on TowForce.


list of the Tow Operator/Service Tech Line of Duty Deaths in 2019. One death is too many, and this has got to stop.

2019 Tow Operators/Service Techs (US & Others) Line of Duty Deaths.....68

1. Pat Cisneros - Albuquerque, NM 1/2,
2. Keith Holt - Dallas, TX 1/4,
3. Bill Hettmann - Green Bay, WI 1/11,
4. Benny Sprinkle - State Road, NC 1/20,
5. Christopher Cannela - Winter Springs, FL 1/29,
6. Jamerson Alexander - Hampton, VA 2/7,
7. Talbot 2/10,
8. Eldridge 2/10,
9. Gary DuBose - Galveston, TX 2/23,
10. James Morris - Benicia, CA 2/26,
11. Unknown (Mexico) 3/2,
12. Dennison 3/5,
13. Taulbee 3/10,
14. Langner (South Africa) 3/19,
15. Shalvinesh Sharma - Sacramento, CA 3/26
16. Roselyn Sharma - Sacramento, CA 3/26,
17. Ronnie Davis - Dallas, TX 3/27
18. Colin Schaefer - Lake Winola, PA 3/29,
19. Yatim (Malaysia) 4/7,
20. Kit (Malaysia) 4/7,
21. Kevin Raasch - Lawrence, KS 4/7
22. Tommy McKee - Courtland, MS 4/23,
23. Michael Buffington - Richland, MS 4/25,
24. Morris Welch Jr. - Empire, AL 4/30
25. Dominic Cook - Dallas, TX 4/6
26. Jason Throne - Fremont, IN 5/2
27. Clinton Simmons - Lebanon, IN 5/8
28. Unknown - East London, South.
29. Erwin Geremillo - Castaic, CA 5/31
30. Joe Milley - Vancouver, BC 6/9
31. Richard Struble - Tuscon, AZ 6/10
32. Donald Eastman - Franklin, NH 6/19
33. John Pekipaki - South Bay, CA 6/18
34. Daniel Semanko - Riviera, TX 6/27
35. Stuart Johnson Jr. - Baltimore, MD 6/30
36. Andrew McConnico - Coleyville, TX 7/8
37. Romeo Marquez - Panorama City, CA 7/11
38. Terrell Pack - Stephenville, TX 7/25
39. Steve Tasker - Baltimore, MD 7/28
40. Lloyd Moore, Jr. - Tallulah, LA 8/2
41. Unknown - Woodstock, N.B. 8/8
42. Richard Todd Wilson - Millbrook, AL 8/22
43. Scott Pimental - Cookeville, TN 8/23
44. Ryan Rattan - San Fernando, CA 9/2
45. Patric Barrio - Lubbock, TX 9/3
46. Michael Lindsey - Nashville, TN 10/3
47. Tarreak Butler - College Park, MD 10/6
48. Jesse Martinez-Acosta - Riverside, CA 10/7
49. Jeff Underwood - Byron, GA 10/10
50. Mario Lopez - Otay Mesa, CA 10/18
51. Thavendren Naicker - Durban, South Africa 10/21
52. Michael Morgeson - Fort Worth, TX 10/22
53. Augustin Martinez - Houston, TX 10/23
54. Jimmy (Jae's Towing) - Heath, OH 11/1
55. David Reinerio Pineda Alvarez - Washington DC, 11/6
56. Todd Burgess - Oshawa, Can. 11/7
57. Casey Marston - Woodland, CA 11/12
58. Jesus Hernandez - Santa Rosa, CA 11/15
59. Keith Kierstead - Pinellas Park, FL 11/23
60. Tommy Melton - Memphis, TN 11/23
61. Carlos Marin - Orlando, FL 11/29
62. Anthony Edgehill - Brooklyn, NY 12/2
63. Zach Johnson - Sanger, TX 12/2
64. Joshua Henao - Irving, TX 12/10
65. Paul Dakan - Denver, CO 12/15
66. Pat Herring - Somerset, PA 12/19
67. Ralph Walker - Newport News, VA 12/23
68. Larry Kizer - Louisville, KY 12/31

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