Jump to content
  • Join the TowForce community.

    It looks like you're not logged in. Register to get started and to receive Tower Down Notices.

Lest We Forget those who have survived!


Recommended Posts

These are just a couple of the stories from AAA Drivers that have survived serious accidents that have nearly taken their lives. We think about those who have lost their lives, we honor them on the Wall of the Fallen. We recognize their families as survivors, yet the fear is we forget about those whose lives were impacted and are no longer about to work, that which is in our blood still runs through theirs. Let's not forget them, let's not make them just another story in the archives.



If you're one of these drivers and your reading this topic. We want you to know you have not been forgotten! We want to hear of your progress, as your story could easily be one of ours! May The TowForce be with you in your recovery!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Back in 1975, I had my leg broken by a car that lost control in the rain while I worked a CHP recovery. A car was driving too fast in heavy rain, hit the center K-rail and careened into the tow truck and the tow truck shoved into me. As I worked the non-traffic controls, I winched a small pickup truck up the embankment as the CHP officer and the vehicle's owner were seated in the CHP car. The impact swept sent me down the imbankment and the officer came to where I landed he asked, "Where'd ja' go?" Two year's later, a DUI driver driving an International Scout spun-out in the ran and I hit him head-on in a loaded carrier with a car topside and pulling a loaded two-axle trailer. The impact shoved the Scout down the embankment and it over-turned. The carrier was totalled and my resulting injury was a only a smallish hole in my face. To this day some 45-year's later, I'm still vividly aware of how lucky I was in both incidents.      R.

Randall C. Resch

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In 2000, I was recovering a cavalier that had run over a spare tire that fell out from under a ford pickup, got hung up on it and slid down a hill off the shoulder. My truck, lights on was on the shoulder, I had about 30' of line out and attached to the car and there was a trooper, lights on parked about 5-6 car lengths behind my work area.I had winched the car about 10' to a point where there was a rut that allowed room to remove the tire from under the car. I stopped winching and walked down to the casualty, got down on my knees and grabbed the tire. Just as I did that a buick lesabre crossed the center line, slammed into my truck head on shoving it back and spinning it 180' into the front end of the troopers car. the whiplash effect pulled the cavalier into and over me and mashed me down into the soft, muddy rut. I suffered 2 broken ribs, a punctured lung, a fractured vertabre, numerous cuts and gashes and both my wrists were broken. turns out the driver of the buick was a 72 year old woman who had a medical emergency while driving. There were no skidding tires, no odd sounds of any sort till impact. The buick driver had her cruise set at 50 m.p.h. so she ran into my truck at 50 m.p.h. Luckily she survived the crash and the stroke she suffered that caused the wreck. This wreck is in the back of my mind everyday and i am thankful I survived. My truck (was my first one i owned outright on my own) was totalled For years ive tried to think of what I could have done differently to protect myself better and all these years later i have decided that this was one of those freak accidents that you really just cant prepare for.  


Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have three occasions to add personally. I am very fortunate to be here today to tell any of these stories.


1992, PA Route 739 Northbound near Silver Lake Road, driving a Ford carrier, deck on the ground about to load a Ford Escort that had spun out in the snow/ice and bent a rear trailing arm so it wasn't driveable. Had just begun to stand up from hooking the bridle to the lower control arms when it feels like I was kicked by a mule and all of a sudden I am at the driver door of my carrier. Someone in a Dodge Power Wagon had came over the hill and couldn't steer on the slippery road, driving too fast for conditions and plowed head on into the push bumper on my truck, sending it about 18 foot backwards and under the car I had just been hooking up. 30-45 seconds earlier and I would have been between the edge of my deck and the front axle of the disabled car, most likely would not be here today to discuss. No citation issued because the PSP (State police) Trooper said, "well it is icy out, he couldn't help it. Besides you weren't injured and maybe next time you will leave the crashes to the professionals." This was in direct response to the fact the other tower in town did all the Trooper's personal car repairs and had the contract to service the patrol units as well. Heck, they wouldn't even give me a rotation call that landed in my own parking lot if the owner wasn't there telling them it was mine.


2004, driving an International 4700 with a 21' Chevron carrier deck. I-84 WB mile marker 50.4 in Pennsylvania. Carrier deck down, parked on right hand shoulder at about 45 degree angle, winching a SUV out of the ditch and directly onto the deck to transport from the scene. Had a PSP patrol car down stream from me by 100' or so, right lane closed with flares that the PSP and Fire Dept had placed, another patrol car upstream about 100'. Two Troopers standing outside, customer in my truck strapped in. Two tractor trailers are coming up the hill strong, moving quickly and the outside one was not letting up, the inside one either. The one in the right lane started hitting cones and flares, then the Trooper patrol car and my carrier. Sent it flying into the other patrol unit that was 100' upstream. Where I am fortunate, I had just walked around from the right front corner of my truck with the Trooper that was investigating, saw the trucks coming and shoved him into the ditch as I jumped down. The SUV being winched out, think it was a s-10 Blazer, just missed both of us as it was violently jerked out of the ditch. The other Trooper called out to make sure we were all ok and took off in pursuit as neither trucker stopped. Caught the offending truck 8 miles down the road, driver swore he didn't hit a thing but still had most of my hood wedged between his trailer axles! He ended up losing his CDL over that one, it is all on dash cam.


2010, driving a International with a Holes 600R in Albuquerque, NM at 2nd and Menual, responding to a rolled over RV. APD has all for corners of the major intersection closed, about 8 or 10 of their units on scene as well as fire, ems and our company had my truck, a 35 ton, our Landoll and a KW carrier. Car drives over the sidewalk and around the APD officer doing traffic, hits me in the shoulder hard enough to knock me down and take the wind out of me, then keeps going. Saddest part, APD wouldn't even pursue them, said no big deal as I wasn't seriously injured.


So, I have been very fortunate to have a few close calls but sustained no serious injury. To this day I can recall these moments and they will pop into my head when I see someone in a dangerous situation on the roadside. Scary stuff.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Instead of squandering money on adds which are a "great" pr stunt, why can AAA not step up and be an industry leader and state we will implement a roadside blocker program. Again, just as locks keep honest people honest, slow down move over only keeps safe drivers safe. It offers zero protection from a drunk or dope fiend driver. 

Those who are seriously and or life changingly impaired have long been forgotten. I strongly believe that a total of injured operators also must be tabulated. As well as a dollar amount that is placed on the injured person's family and employer. 

I still believe that a presentation featuring a mock fatality woulf benefit many operators to see thd real impact of the circumstances following an operator being killed on the side of the road. I know it is morbid, but it just might wake a few people up and get them to take their responsibility seriously rather than the, "It won't happen to me", or "sucks to be you" mentality that seemd to be omnipresent today.


  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 year later...

I am working on a list of Slow Down Move Over PSA Video's with the most IMPACT. Seems these PSA's have short lifespan in the public eye, yet some are far more moving then others. The Video is this Topic certainly reflects on those who have been affected because of being struck.


Lest We Forgot Them on the Long Road to Recovery!


These are the true survivors that may have thought they were forgotten. We don't or should never leave a brother behind. Let them know We Care by leaving a response in this very topic and if you know a driver that has been impacted, had their life changed. Give us an update... if your the driver we want to hear from you!


I am also adding what may be the Number One PSA that Relates to a Towing Truck Operator and their Family.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Unfortunately, your content contains terms that we do not allow. Please edit your content to remove the highlighted words below.
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...
Please Sign In or Sign Up