Issues Archives: Volume 3 Issue 9

Baltimore Tow Show through DJ’s Eyes

Fuel for Thought photo

Once again, I am delighted to report of a place I’ve been to for 18 years. Sixteen of those eighteen years, I have seen it up close because I’ve spoken there 16 times myself.

It’s my privilege today to report on 2 wonderful companies, Jerr-Dan and Auto Data Direct, and an amazing man, the world-famous Terry Humelsine.

Let’s start with Terry Humelsine. Most of you know him as the lead instructor with WreckMaster. Terry has been in the towing, transport and recovery industry for 55 years. Truly amazing! That’s over half of a century. WreckMaster has been fortunate to have him as their lead instructor for the last 24 years.Terry was kind enough to autograph my copy of the book after I paid for it. His book is called The Recovery Handbook. I helped sell a few of them while towers visited the Tow 123 booth.

Well-written, the book shows charts, pictures and explains in detail lifting capacity bridle (sling) angles, towing securement, commercial towing, new and old methods and safety equipment. That’s a lot of detailed information, but there’s even more. This book isn’t meant for someone who’s an inexperienced or a “neophyte” operator. If you have had formal training, then it’s for you. It’s a must-have. You can call WreckMaster at 800-267-2266 to get your copy. Terry’s book would make a great Christmas gift for the tower in your life.


Now let’s talk Jerr-Dan. Yes, they were the “talk of the show” with their new 50/60 Ton Rotator. Do you remember the saying, “God gave us two ears and one mouth”? It’s a hint we should do twice the amount of listening. That is just what Jerr-Dan did. They listened to their customer base and came up with the handsome truck right behind Mike Cherry, training specialist. (We both served at the last supper!) That’s Jeff Irr, Director of Sales, and I. This is a twin steer JFS body style. It has a shortened
wheel base with S130 out riggers. (Scissor style) The Jerr-Dan booth was packed all weekend. The JerrDan heavy-duty rotators are built to handle the jobs other trucks can’t touch. I asked Mike about the S130 out-riggers. He explained that the exclusive “scissor-style” outrigger system provides maximum stability for a working radius that leads the industry at nearly, I believe he said 42ft. That means you can get into position easier and recover vehicles distressed in even the most challenging conditions.

There’s one more thing about the Baltimore Tow Show…Tow 123 Booth. It was powered by Auto Data Direct. Yours truly worked the booth all weekend except to run over to WreckMaster and Jerr-Dan to get a picture for this article. In this picture, Sarah Taylor of Tow 123 is going over the features and benefits of this comprehensive, affordable management program. All weekend, I told towers to step up and look. There wasn’t any contract to sign, no hidden fees for features and updates. No software to download or install. Tow 123 is a great program. No setup or activation fee, free mobile app for Android and IOS, unlimited users, FREE Auto Data Direct integration, FREE certified letter integration (where available), FREE state DMV inquiry integration, Google MAPS integration, and a whole lot more.

There really isn’t enough space given here to write all the benefits of the Tow 123. If you would like a FREE online demo, visit their website at or call toll-free at (855)686.9123. Tell Sarah or Clay that you saw my article and that you would like to take a “test drive.” My prescription for your success is Tow 123.

See you next time.

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Weiss Insurance


Cindy Horn, Janice LaVitte, and Bryan Westfall are a unit at Weiss Insurance that specializes in various transportation risks. They design your insurance policy to fit your insurance needs. Not all risks are identical; years in business, your own loss experience, driver experience, and type of business will affect your insurance cost.

They understand your business and your business needs. They wear many hats as independent agents, representing various insurance companies, which allow them to “design” a policy for you. Towing, Transportation, Repossession, Cargo, Excess Cargo, Garage and or Repair Facilities, and Auto Sales are some of the types of business that they write. They have markets for worker’s compensation, group health, property, general liability, and personal insurance. They are an “all lines” independent agent agency.

Toll free (866) 377-4674
Cindy (636)534-7226
Janice (573)547-7782
Bryan (636)534-7239
Fax (636) 534-7926

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Travis Barlow Insurance Company

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Travis Barlow Insurance Company has been a leading provider of towing and recovery insurance & auto transporter insurance for over 30 years. From auto liability coverage, on hook/cargo insurance, general liability and Garagekeepers coverage to State & ICC filings, we insure small as well as large operations and all size tow trucks, wreckers, rollbacks and auto transporters.

We understand the towing and recovery industry. We know you have specialized insurance needs and that each operation has its own unique requirements. When you request an insurance quote, we ask for various and detailed information. This information is needed so that our experienced professionals can provide tailored solutions and accurate quotes for your specific situation.

Each member of the Travis Barlow team has years of experience in his/her respective field. All agents and service staff are fully licensed in Property and Casualty and are required to meet annual state requirements in continuing education. Our highly qualified agents are dedicated to delivering unsurpassed service and quality insurance solutions to every customer.

We offer:

  • Competitive Rates
  • Superior Service & Support
  • Specialized Coverages

* Customized Insurance Solutions
CALL TOLL FREE (800) 537-7152

Fax: 770-406-2798

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LDC logo

We at LDC INSURANCE SERVICES, INC. have over 20 years’ experience in the Auto Transportation insurance industry. We personally understand the operations and coverage needs of today’s professional Tower and Auto Repossession Businesses.

Our programs are with A Rated Insurance Companies with underwriters who have developed many of the coverage forms used today.

Coverages we provide are: Auto Liability, General Liability, Garagekeepers, On-Hook, Wrongful Repossession, Property, Inland Marine & Excess.

Increased Liability limits are available along with Direct Primary Garagekeepers.

Policies can be written to include coverage for Auto Repair Shops, Salvage Lots &Used Car Sales.

We keep our clients year after year, because of our Personal Customer Service, the Best Pricing available, and our knowledge of the business.

Contact us today for a quote or simply complete our Quick Application on our website:
(480) 988-1768 * (877) 988-1768 * (480) 275-8259 fax *

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KBK Specialized Tow Truck Insurance


The Personnel of KBK have been involved in the design and marketing of Towing Insurance since 1987

Is Towing your main business?
If so, this program was designed for you. Also covers most of your incidental operations Broad Coverage Prompt and fair claims handling


  • Garagekeepers Legal Liability
  • On Hook – Cargo
  • Hired Car
  • Non-Ownership
  • Property

Renewal credits For Safety Training Policies within 30 Days


  • Video
  • Safety Manual
  • Monthly Safety Letters

KBK Insurance Group, Inc.
1425 Sams Ave., Suite 201
Harahan, Louisiana 70123
Fax: 504-736-9030

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How to Recover Lost Income or “Down Time” for Your Truck

Hal Kresser logo

By Hal Kresser, Hal Kresser Insurance Agency

There are many misconceptions about how much money you are entitled to recover when your truck is out of service due to an accident. You are entitled to recover the net income of the disabled vehicle from the at-fault party. You cannot make such a claim with your own insurance company unless “lost income” is covered in your policy. Not all insurance companies offer lost income coverage on commercial vehicles. As in all insurance claims, you must prove the loss or damage.

The records you keep are the key to a fast, fair settlement. You have to provide records listing the annual mileage, cost of fuel, average number of tows and average price per tow for that vehicle. You will then need to list the average expenses, such as fuel, labor and maintenance, etc. Unless you want to spend hours digging through receipts and invoices, keeping this information on a per-truck basis is advisable. Daily logs can work well for tracking. If you want to simplify things even more, using an inexpensive dispatch/accounting software package like Towbook© can be a huge timesaver. Those programs are tailor-made for the towing industry and give an owner this detailed info and more at the click of a mouse.

Net Income is the amount of profit (money) a business has after determining gross income and deducting all expenses like fuel, labor, maintenance, etc. In this simple example, all amounts are based on a six-month average. Start with $900 in receipts.

Then subtract $128 fuel, $150 labor and $20 maintenance, and you are left with an average daily income of $602. Multiply that by the number of days the truck is out of service, and you have the amount you can claim.

Now you simply need to prepare a cover letter to the claims adjustor detailing the claim for lost income. Include the total amount of lost income and make sure you attach the supporting documentation as outlined above. Neatness counts!

Documentation and reports that are well laid out and organized will build your credibility with the adjustor.

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You know towing! We know towing Insurance!

bowers logo

Bowers Group is celebrating our 100th Anniversary in 2013. We have developed many insurance programs over the years. Our Towing & Recovery Program started in 1986 and has been one of our most successful.

Bowers Group represents 5 insurance companies that insure towing contractors, allowing us to address almost any situation. One of these company programs is exclusive to Bowers Group in the states of OH, MI, IN, IL, MN, WI, and IA.

Bowers Group currently insures in excess of 100 towing companies throughout the Midwest.

Bowers Group offers coverage for light, medium or heavy duty towing. Garage/General Liability, Garagekeepers, On Hook/Cargo and necessary Property coverage are all available in one policy with interest-free, monthly payment plans.

Some of our business associates say it best:

“I feel Gene Francisco of Bowers Group protects our business like it’s his own. His entire staff affords us friendly, personal, prompt and professional service.”
Vaughn Gobel, Gobel’s Auto Body & Towing, Inc., Poland, OH

Bowers Group’s attention to detail and knowledge of the towing industry gives us confidence we meet or exceed all local, state and national insurance requirements.”
Nick Laneve, A&M Towing & Road Service, Inc., Girard, OH

“In dealing with the transportation industry, one faction of that industry relies heavily on timely and accurate insurance filings with the Federal, State and local governments. It is exceedingly important that a motor carrier’s insurance agent be aware not only of the proper coverage for his insured’s protection but also the filings necessary to keep operating authorities active. One of the best agencies that I have worked with is Gene Francisco and the Bowers Group. They have the expertise that is required to ensure that you, the motor carrier, are protected.”
Dave Cavanaugh, President, Transportation Management Consultants, Inc.
(800) 837-6146

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Austin Insurance

austin ins logo

Austin Insurance has specialized in Towing & Recovery insurance since 1991, and they are dedicated to quality service. By working with many different companies, they can offer a competitive insurance package. No matter if you own one truck or 30, are located on the East coast or the West, they are willing to fulfill your insurance needs.

Austin Insurance, Inc. has specialized in providing coverage for towing operations for many years. They have many companies to offer comprehensive packages to provide protection for all aspects of your business.

Austin Insurance, Inc. provides repossession insurance at affordable rates, including “wrongful repossession,” hold harmless, and employee bonds.

They also offer the following other coverage’s. Please contact them for further information or with any questions you may have.

  • Auto Transporters
  • Trucking Insurance
  • Motor Truck Cargo
  • Salvage/Recyclers
  • Pollution Coverage
  • Umbrella
  • Workers Compensation
  • Bonds

At Austin Insurance, Inc., “We’ll come see you” isn’t just a catchphrase. They want to provide you with not only insurance, but a full understanding of your coverage’s, and they will do all that they can to make that happen, including coming to see you!

Austin Insurance, Inc.
Rob Austin
Phone: 270-444-6818
Toll Free: (800) 548-7539

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Allstate Roadside Services Launches Advocacy Campaign to Raise Awareness of Move Over Laws


Support families of fallen service workers and Allstate will match donations up to $25,000

NORTHBROOK, Ill. – Oct. 28, 2014 – More than one tow truck operator is killed every week by motorists. Today, to honor the men and women who have lost their lives during service, Allstate Roadside Services has teamed up with the International Towing and Recovery Hall of Fame and Museum (ITRHFM) to launch the “Provider Safety Advocacy” campaign to raise awareness of Move Over laws.

As part of the national campaign, Allstate and the ITRHFM created an online Public Service Announcement (PSA) entitled “Move Over, Slow Down” to showcase the impact that Move Over laws can have on individuals both on and off the road. Featuring families who have lost loved ones as a result of motorists not slowing down or moving over when it mattered most, the emotional PSA reveals the lasting impact one moment in time can have when a motorist is distracted.

“Three feet can mean the difference between life and death,” said Paul Huber, Allstate Roadside Services Sr. Director Service Operations. “With countless Providers on the road doing their job to help others, we want to ensure we are doing our part to help protect not only them, but all tow truck drivers and first responders by bringing attention to Move Over laws.”

With the busy holiday travel season approaching, Allstate hopes that the “Provider Safety Advocacy” campaign supporting Move Over laws will help make motorists more aware of what they need to do if they see an emergency vehicle on the side of the road.

To help families of the fallen in their time of need, Allstate is encouraging individuals to make a donation to the Survivor Fund on the ITRHFM website ( Donations will be matched up to $25,000 through November 30.

“Our goals for the ‘Provider Safety Advocacy’ campaign are to raise awareness of Move Over laws and help create a safer environment for those on the road. We hope that this campaign will keep moving over and slowing down top of mind for those behind the wheel so that we can help reduce the number of lives lost,” Huber said.

To learn more about the “Provider Safety Advocacy” campaign and watch the PSA, visit the Allstate YouTube channel – Use #MoveOver to spread the message and follow the conversation on Twitter.

About Allstate®
The Allstate Corporation (NYSE: ALL) is the nation’s largest publicly held personal lines insurer, protecting approximately 16 million households from life’s uncertainties through its Allstate, Encompass, Esurance and Answer Financial brand names and Allstate Financial business segment. Allstate is widely known through the slogan “You’re In Good Hands With Allstate®.” The Allstate brand’s network of small businesses offers auto, home, life and retirement products and services to customers in the United States and Canada. In 2013, The Allstate Foundation, Allstate, its employees and agency owners gave $29 million to support local communities. Allstate employees and agency owners donated 200,000 hours of service across the country.

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With over 35 years selling “Towing” insurance, Larry & Cally Alexander established an agency that has weathered the changing times. Once it was difficult to find an agency or an agent that knew what a towing policy was. Over the years, agents have realized the need for tow insurance, and many have begun to offer towing policies. AIA, Inc. has the experience, knowledge and qualified agents to discuss the coverages and concerns a tower may have and are able to offer competitive quotes based on their needs.

With a combined total of 30 years experience in the insurance industry, agents Leslie Thiele and Rachel Herrera know the special coverages required. With AIA, Inc.’s reputation for exceptional customer service, they are able to respond quickly and competently to an insurance quote request.

Larry & Cally founded the agency on three principles that the agents & staff still hold to:
Commitment, Service & Integrity. AIA, Inc . is committed to continue servicing the towers with integrity.

Alexander Insurance Agency, Inc.
PH: 800-950-7911 / 210-366-1455
FX: 210-366-1455

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