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Thursday, September 17, 2009

FL Tow Truck Drivers Towing Cars, Towing Homes

First time I've seen a story on this sad aspect of the economic downturn and its effect on people AND the towing industry...

Here's the story from www.cbs12.com:

Local tow truck drivers are used to hard luck stories. But nothing could prepare them for what they've been seeing since the economy went south. Tow truck drivers at Lake Park Towing say at least once a week, they show up to tow a car and someone is living inside that car. And They say it's a bad deal for everyone.

If you ever had your car towed, you know you don't get much sympathy from the towing company. Unless the owner of that towing company is Kathryn Gadoury.

"It breaks my heart, especially when you see a baby seat, you know? You know there are children involved, and how are they getting fed, how's anyone getting fed? How are they sleeping? You know, are they safe," Gadoury said.

She showed us a van that her company, Lake Park Towing, was called to pick up after the driver was pulled over without a valid tag or insurance. Kathy says four people were living inside. No one has showed up to get the car for weeks. It's something she has seen too often lately.

"I used to maybe up until last October, I might have got maybe one a month, but now it's like one to two a week," Gadoury said.

Tow truck driver Tim Edwards says he can't tell until he arrives, if he's going to tow a car that a person is living in. He's says it can be the hardest part of his job.

"But sometimes my heart gets in my way, but I still gotta do what I'm told," Edwards said.

And about 9 times out of ten people never return to pick up their cars. Already homeless, they can't afford to get them back. And Kathryn loses money on the deal because she has to hold them for weeks, then most are crushed. The same way she feels when they have to tow a car that someone once called home.

Gadoury said, " It's just an on going thing that's going to be happening as long as the economy is going down as it is".

And aside from the cars people are living in, Kathryn tells us a lot of other people are not coming to pick up their cars. She says she had to get rid of 27 last month...losing money on every one.

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