Been Towed in Hillsborough?

Been Towed in Hillsborough? was first seen on http://galway.apextowing.ie/

Hillsborough’s Public Transportation Commission can help consumers seek full or partial refunds if they have been wrongfully towed.

HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY – You went shopping only to find your car had been towed while you were away.

What should you do?

If you think you’ve been wrongfully towed in Hillsborough County, the Public Transportation Commission says it can help. The PTC regulates for-hire transportation, which includes towing companies, and often assists drivers in Hillsborough County by investigating tow complaints.

The PTC asks that citizens who feel they were wrongfully towed call the PTC or file a complaint online as soon as possible. The PTC will investigate the situation to ensure that the tow truck driver followed the proper policies and rules and that it was a valid tow.

In fact, in some instances, the PTC has been able to get full or partial refunds for drivers. So far this year, the PTC has helped more than 70 percent of citizens who sought their help with getting a refund.

To avoid getting towed, the PTC offers this advice:

• Don’t park in a business’ lot if you are not patronizing that business.
• If you parked in a staffed lot, remember to grab the receipt.
• If you parked in a lot with an honor box, make sure you videotape or take a photo of yourself paying, so you have proof.
• Don’t block anyone’s driveway or business entrance when parking.

While these tips are helpful in trying to avoid a potential tow situation, the PTC also offers tips to help you if your car has been towed.

If your car has been towed:

• If you suspect that the tow was not lawful, call the PTC to report it before you get your car back.
• Take pictures of the area around your car. Take notice of any signs indicating that your car was illegally parked. If signs were not posted at every entrance, it was not a valid tow. All signs should list the tow company with a contact phone number.
• Tow truck drivers are required to have proof of the violation. If the driver did not take pictures of your violation, you may be entitled to a partial or full refund.
• Be sure to pick up your vehicle between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Otherwise, you will be charged a gate fee of $50 before obtaining your car.

The Hillsborough County Public Transportation is an independent Special District that regulates vehicles for-hire, which includes taxicabs, limousines, vans, basic life support ambulances and wrecker services that support government agencies. The PTC also helps consumers who have complaints with these types of services.

Read more: http://www.tbreporter.com/local-news/hillsborough/towed-hillsborough/

Find our tow truck profile here

Thanksgiving travel means plenty business for tow trucks

Thanksgiving travel means plenty business for tow trucks was originally published on Apex Towing

GRAND ISLAND, Neb.– Thanksgiving traffic can be a busy not only on the highways and interstates, but also for tow trucks.

“You never know what’s going to happen. I mean sometimes it’s a little bit slower, steady or swamped,” said Debra Ortega, tow truck driver at Island Towing.

When the calls start coming, it’s because a car broke down, popped a tire or ran out of gas.

“They go by their gas gauge when it says they have so many miles left, they don’t. They need to get gas before the lights come on,” said Ortega.

As for Thanksgiving travelers, once the worst case scenario happens, they never forget.

“When I was little, my mom had a really old car and it broke down. We ended up having to drive back to my grandparents, get it repaired and then drive home,” said Kristin Sandstede.

GRAND ISLAND, Neb.– Thanksgiving traffic can be a busy not only on the highways and interstates, but also for tow trucks.

“You never know what’s going to happen. I mean sometimes it’s a little bit slower, steady or swamped,” said Debra Ortega, tow truck driver at Island Towing.

When the calls start coming, it’s because a car broke down, popped a tire or ran out of gas.

“They go by their gas gauge when it says they have so many miles left, they don’t. They need to get gas before the lights come on,” said Ortega.

As for Thanksgiving travelers, once the worst case scenario happens, they never forget.

“When I was little, my mom had a really old car and it broke down. We ended up having to drive back to my grandparents, get it repaired and then drive home,” said Kristin Sandstede.

Sandstede and her family are traveling from Omaha to Colorado for Thanksgiving. She said she makes sure her tires have enough tread, the oil is changed, and that her car is even washed before she hits the road.

“I don’t know. My parents always said a clean car is always more visible on the road,” said Sandstede.

If something bad does happen, Sandstede said she even knows who to call.

“I always have a list of contacts and a plan of who I would call, who’s closest, kind of knowing where you’re at and how far you are from your destination,” said Sandstede.

In case all else fails and there aren’t any mechanic shops open, tow truck driver Matthew Ortega said some drivers have even spent the extra money to have their car and them towed to where they need to be on thanksgiving.

“Most people don’t have a lot of vacation time and when they finally have vacation and they break down, they want to get where they want to go,” said Ortega.

With the winter weather beginning to set in, drivers should also have an emergency pack in their car at all times. Some items that are recommended are jumper cables, a flash light, as well as snacks and water.

Sandstede and her family are traveling from Omaha to Colorado for Thanksgiving. She said she makes sure her tires have enough tread, the oil is changed, and that her car is even washed before she hits the road.

“I don’t know. My parents always said a clean car is always more visible on the road,” said Sandstede.

If something bad does happen, Sandstede said she even knows who to call.

“I always have a list of contacts and a plan of who I would call, who’s closest, kind of knowing where you’re at and how far you are from your destination,” said Sandstede.

In case all else fails and there aren’t any mechanic shops open, tow truck driver Matthew Ortega said some drivers have even spent the extra money to have their car and them towed to where they need to be on thanksgiving.

“Most people don’t have a lot of vacation time and when they finally have vacation and they break down, they want to get where they want to go,” said Ortega.

With the winter weather beginning to set in, drivers should also have an emergency pack in their car at all times. Some items that are recommended are jumper cables, a flash light, as well as snacks and water.

Find original: http://www.nbcneb.com/content/news/Thanksgiving-travel-means-plenty-business-for-tow-trucks-402811696.html

Find our tow truck profile here

In train vs. tow truck, the train wins

In train vs. tow truck, the train wins is courtesy of Apex Towing

According to Capt. Mark Pierce of the Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office in Wichita, Kansas, an initial four-car crash occurred nearby, which resulted in three people being transported to the hospital for minor injuries. As a tow truck was arriving to secure one of the vehicles in that crash, a passing train clipped the bed of the truck, sending a car flying. No injuries were reported from the second crash.

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Courtesy of Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office

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Ireland’s confusing towing rules explained

Popular: Skoda Ireland says 22 per cent of its new cars in 2015 were ordered with factory-fitted towing systemsPopular: Skoda Ireland says 22 per cent of its new cars in 2015 were ordered with factory-fitted towing systems

It’s common on Irish roads to see a car towing a trailer while clipping along at the 120km/h speed limit, despite the fact that the legal speed limit for towing a trailer is just 80km/h.

Speed is just one of the regulations concerning trailer use that are frequently flaunted. The laws and licensing for trailer use are complicated and at times confusing. The reality is that many drivers are towing trailers without the proper licence, despite the risk of incurring penalty points and potentially voiding their insurance cover. With trailer use, weight is the key.

What can I tow on my car licence? On a standard B car licence you can tow a trailer that has a maximum authorised mass (Mam) of 750kg; this includes the weight of both the trailer and its load. (A trailer’s technical specifications are stamped on a metal plate attached to it.) You can also tow a trailer and load weighing more than 750kg as long as the combined weight of the vehicle and loaded trailer does not exceed 3,500kg. A “type 01”, “unbraked” trailer does not need a braking mechanism. This trailer is likely to be small – when it is empty you could manhandle it with little effort – with, usually, just one axle.

Can I tow a horsebox on a car licence? According to the Road Safety Authority, “As a general rule a category B licence does not entitle the holder to tow a horsebox or a livestock trailer, because the combined Mam would exceed 3,500kg.” But this is not always the case. Again, as long as the total weight of the car, trailer and load carried does not exceed 3,500kg you can drive it on a B licence. For example, a Skoda Octavia family estate towing a “type 02” trailer – one with a Mam of more than 750kg – with two bulls weighs in at 3,085kg combined, but the same trailer and livestock towed by a Toyota Land Cruiser SUV weighs in at 4,440kg, well over the 3,500kg B-licence limit.

Drivers of large SUVs on a B licence need to take care, as their heavier vehicles can often push the total weight above the 3,500kg limit, then requiring a category BE (car and trailer) licence.

This seems inherently silly, as a large SUV would generally have more power than a car, to make towing easier, but that’s the way the rules apply.

Of course, before you attach a hitch to a Ford Ka it’s worth noting the towing vehicle must be certified to tow the weight of the trailer and load.

What if the vehicle, trailer and load together weigh more than 3,500kg and I don’t have a BE licence? To gain a category BE on your car licence you must have a full B licence. You are required to get a learner permit and take a practical driving test. You must sit a theory test in category BW (if you haven’t already to get your B licence) to gain a learner permit. You must display an L-plate on the trailer and when practising with it must be accompanied by a driver with a full BE licence. Lessons are not mandatory for a BE test, but the RSA recommends them. During the test, drivers are given the option of reversing to their left or right around a corner. Can I use any trailer for my BE test? No, it must be a permanent boxed trailer, such as a horsebox, at least as wide and as high as the vehicle towing it and at least 2.4 metres long. The trailer must be presented with 30 four-inch cement blocks as a load.

What does a BE licence allow me to tow? With BE, the trailer and load can weigh up to 3,500kg and your vehicle can weigh up to the same maximum of 3.5 tonnes, bringing the combined weight to 7,000kg. A BE-licence holder can tow a car, whereas a B-licence holder cannot.

Can I buy a new trailer from anyone? Since late October 2012 the days of buying a trailer built by a local lad who is good with his hands are gone. All new trailers for sale must have “European Community whole vehicle type approval”. The National Standards Authority of Ireland is responsible for testing and issuing national approvals for trailers made in Ireland. The law is unclear on older trailers and their use, but ultimately the driver is responsible for the safety of his or her trailer and load.

An example of the scale of the towing market in Ireland is evident by orders for cars fitted with hitches. Skoda Ireland says that last year 22 per cent of the new cars it sold were ordered with factory-fitted towing systems.

The benefit of a factory-fitted system is that it’s equipped with compatible electrics connections, while the car’s stability control and other driving aids automatically adapt to having a trailer attached.

The car’s alarm also recognises that a trailer is attached and monitors it; light bulbs in the trailer are monitored, too; stop/start is switched off; and the ABS adjusts for the trailer. Factory tow hitches aren’t cheap but are worth it. Skoda’s start at €499 and rise to €899.

We were invited to put our towing skills to the test at a novel event. We had a Skoda Octavia Combi (from €32,710) to which we hitched a general-purpose twin-axle trailer.

The first challenge was to collect and load a round bale of straw and then drive on a mix of roads. Securing the load, in this case with ratchet straps, is the responsibility of the driver. It is an offence to have an unsecured load. The motorway section of the route was incredibly dull, as we stuck to the 80km/h car-and-trailer speed limit.

At times we felt a little anxious, as cars and buses would appear rapidly behind us and then overtake. Our trailer was braked, so it had internal brakes that were applied whenever the car slowed down. The trailer was new, so it didn’t tug or jerk at all – something older or poorly serviced trailers can do.

At the end of the trip a car park was coned out and a number of reversing tasks were set for us by John Kearney, an instructor with Hynes Quinn driving school.

“Professional training can make the difference between passing and failing your test. More often than not people tend to oversteer; with professional training you can get the best advice to get the trailer going where you want it to go,” he said.

We managed quite well, but reversing with a trailer is a skill you really only master with practice.

Reversing a trailer is counterintuitive, but once you get a feel for it your confidence grows. With a growing number of cars fitted with hitches taking to our roads, it’s a skill that more motorists should formally learn rather than hope to pick up along the way.

Read more: http://www.irishtimes.com/life-and-style/motors/ireland-s-confusing-towing-rules-explained-1.2633473

Contact us if you need a tow truck

Ireland’s confusing towing rules explained was first published to ApexTowing – Dublin

Ireland’s confusing towing rules explained

Popular: Skoda Ireland says 22 per cent of its new cars in 2015 were ordered with factory-fitted towing systemsPopular: Skoda Ireland says 22 per cent of its new cars in 2015 were ordered with factory-fitted towing systems

It’s common on Irish roads to see a car towing a trailer while clipping along at the 120km/h speed limit, despite the fact that the legal speed limit for towing a trailer is just 80km/h.

Speed is just one of the regulations concerning trailer use that are frequently flaunted. The laws and licensing for trailer use are complicated and at times confusing. The reality is that many drivers are towing trailers without the proper licence, despite the risk of incurring penalty points and potentially voiding their insurance cover. With trailer use, weight is the key.

What can I tow on my car licence? On a standard B car licence you can tow a trailer that has a maximum authorised mass (Mam) of 750kg; this includes the weight of both the trailer and its load. (A trailer’s technical specifications are stamped on a metal plate attached to it.) You can also tow a trailer and load weighing more than 750kg as long as the combined weight of the vehicle and loaded trailer does not exceed 3,500kg. A “type 01”, “unbraked” trailer does not need a braking mechanism. This trailer is likely to be small – when it is empty you could manhandle it with little effort – with, usually, just one axle.

Can I tow a horsebox on a car licence? According to the Road Safety Authority, “As a general rule a category B licence does not entitle the holder to tow a horsebox or a livestock trailer, because the combined Mam would exceed 3,500kg.” But this is not always the case. Again, as long as the total weight of the car, trailer and load carried does not exceed 3,500kg you can drive it on a B licence. For example, a Skoda Octavia family estate towing a “type 02” trailer – one with a Mam of more than 750kg – with two bulls weighs in at 3,085kg combined, but the same trailer and livestock towed by a Toyota Land Cruiser SUV weighs in at 4,440kg, well over the 3,500kg B-licence limit.

Drivers of large SUVs on a B licence need to take care, as their heavier vehicles can often push the total weight above the 3,500kg limit, then requiring a category BE (car and trailer) licence.

This seems inherently silly, as a large SUV would generally have more power than a car, to make towing easier, but that’s the way the rules apply.

Of course, before you attach a hitch to a Ford Ka it’s worth noting the towing vehicle must be certified to tow the weight of the trailer and load.

What if the vehicle, trailer and load together weigh more than 3,500kg and I don’t have a BE licence? To gain a category BE on your car licence you must have a full B licence. You are required to get a learner permit and take a practical driving test. You must sit a theory test in category BW (if you haven’t already to get your B licence) to gain a learner permit. You must display an L-plate on the trailer and when practising with it must be accompanied by a driver with a full BE licence. Lessons are not mandatory for a BE test, but the RSA recommends them. During the test, drivers are given the option of reversing to their left or right around a corner. Can I use any trailer for my BE test? No, it must be a permanent boxed trailer, such as a horsebox, at least as wide and as high as the vehicle towing it and at least 2.4 metres long. The trailer must be presented with 30 four-inch cement blocks as a load.

What does a BE licence allow me to tow? With BE, the trailer and load can weigh up to 3,500kg and your vehicle can weigh up to the same maximum of 3.5 tonnes, bringing the combined weight to 7,000kg. A BE-licence holder can tow a car, whereas a B-licence holder cannot.

Can I buy a new trailer from anyone? Since late October 2012 the days of buying a trailer built by a local lad who is good with his hands are gone. All new trailers for sale must have “European Community whole vehicle type approval”. The National Standards Authority of Ireland is responsible for testing and issuing national approvals for trailers made in Ireland. The law is unclear on older trailers and their use, but ultimately the driver is responsible for the safety of his or her trailer and load.

An example of the scale of the towing market in Ireland is evident by orders for cars fitted with hitches. Skoda Ireland says that last year 22 per cent of the new cars it sold were ordered with factory-fitted towing systems.

The benefit of a factory-fitted system is that it’s equipped with compatible electrics connections, while the car’s stability control and other driving aids automatically adapt to having a trailer attached.

The car’s alarm also recognises that a trailer is attached and monitors it; light bulbs in the trailer are monitored, too; stop/start is switched off; and the ABS adjusts for the trailer. Factory tow hitches aren’t cheap but are worth it. Skoda’s start at €499 and rise to €899.

We were invited to put our towing skills to the test at a novel event. We had a Skoda Octavia Combi (from €32,710) to which we hitched a general-purpose twin-axle trailer.

The first challenge was to collect and load a round bale of straw and then drive on a mix of roads. Securing the load, in this case with ratchet straps, is the responsibility of the driver. It is an offence to have an unsecured load. The motorway section of the route was incredibly dull, as we stuck to the 80km/h car-and-trailer speed limit.

At times we felt a little anxious, as cars and buses would appear rapidly behind us and then overtake. Our trailer was braked, so it had internal brakes that were applied whenever the car slowed down. The trailer was new, so it didn’t tug or jerk at all – something older or poorly serviced trailers can do.

At the end of the trip a car park was coned out and a number of reversing tasks were set for us by John Kearney, an instructor with Hynes Quinn driving school.

“Professional training can make the difference between passing and failing your test. More often than not people tend to oversteer; with professional training you can get the best advice to get the trailer going where you want it to go,” he said.

We managed quite well, but reversing with a trailer is a skill you really only master with practice.

Reversing a trailer is counterintuitive, but once you get a feel for it your confidence grows. With a growing number of cars fitted with hitches taking to our roads, it’s a skill that more motorists should formally learn rather than hope to pick up along the way.

Read more: http://www.irishtimes.com/life-and-style/motors/ireland-s-confusing-towing-rules-explained-1.2633473

Contact us if you need a tow truck

Ireland’s confusing towing rules explained is courtesy of ApexTowing – Dublin

Second in National Tow Truck Photo Contest

Michael's Towing 2015 Ford F450

Michael’s Towing 2015 Ford F450

By Susan Larson. Photo provided by Michael’s Towing & Recovery

Fredericksburg, Virginia — Michael’s Towing & Recovery won second place for Light-Duty Tow Truck in the national Shine ‘n Star Tow Truck Photo Beauty Contest, hosted by Tow Times magazine and Ford Trucks.

The winning photo features a 2015 Ford F450 with Jerr-Dan MPL 40 eight-ton recovery boom towing equipment. It sports a custom green and white vinyl wrap, with hand-applied door jam striping. The Ford F450 winning tow truck also boasts a bumper extension for a Warn 12,000-lb. winch, aluminum wheels, visor, and stainless steel on the rear deck.

The photo was chosen from 550 entries submitted in five categories.

“The annual Shine ‘n Star Tow Truck Photo Beauty Contest taps into towing operators’ pride in their fleet, providing an opportunity to show off the beauty and brawn of their equipment,” said Tow Times’ Publisher Clarissa Powell.

Michael’s Towing was the Grand Prize winner in the 2014 Shine ‘n Star Tow Truck Photo Beauty Contest for a Kenworth T800 twin steer with a Century 1140 rotator.

Michael Powell is owner of Michael’s Towing & Recovery, which is located at 10934 Houser Dr. in Fredericksburg.

First seen: http://fredericksburg.today/michaels-towing-recovery-wins-second-in-national-tow-truck-photo-contest

Contact us 24/7 if you are in need of a tow truck in Dublin

Second in National Tow Truck Photo Contest Read more on: Apex Towing

Second in National Tow Truck Photo Contest

Michael's Towing 2015 Ford F450

Michael’s Towing 2015 Ford F450

By Susan Larson. Photo provided by Michael’s Towing & Recovery

Fredericksburg, Virginia — Michael’s Towing & Recovery won second place for Light-Duty Tow Truck in the national Shine ‘n Star Tow Truck Photo Beauty Contest, hosted by Tow Times magazine and Ford Trucks.

The winning photo features a 2015 Ford F450 with Jerr-Dan MPL 40 eight-ton recovery boom towing equipment. It sports a custom green and white vinyl wrap, with hand-applied door jam striping. The Ford F450 winning tow truck also boasts a bumper extension for a Warn 12,000-lb. winch, aluminum wheels, visor, and stainless steel on the rear deck.

The photo was chosen from 550 entries submitted in five categories.

“The annual Shine ‘n Star Tow Truck Photo Beauty Contest taps into towing operators’ pride in their fleet, providing an opportunity to show off the beauty and brawn of their equipment,” said Tow Times’ Publisher Clarissa Powell.

Michael’s Towing was the Grand Prize winner in the 2014 Shine ‘n Star Tow Truck Photo Beauty Contest for a Kenworth T800 twin steer with a Century 1140 rotator.

Michael Powell is owner of Michael’s Towing & Recovery, which is located at 10934 Houser Dr. in Fredericksburg.

First seen: http://fredericksburg.today/michaels-towing-recovery-wins-second-in-national-tow-truck-photo-contest

Contact us 24/7 if you are in need of a tow truck in Dublin

Second in National Tow Truck Photo Contest See more on: Apex Towing – Dublin Blog