Snow brings work: not profit for tow drivers - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Snow brings work: not profit for tow drivers

(Source: Raycom Media) (Source: Raycom Media)
(KFVS) -

Snowy weather means your car is far more likely to end up in a ditch, and while that usually means a spike in business for towing services, it’s not the money maker you might think.

In a two hour time span on Thursday morning, Illinois State Police responded to 27 service calls in ISP District 13 alone according to Trooper Joey Watson. 

80% were winter related crashes.

District 13 covers areas like Perry, Jackson, and Williamson Counties.

By the word of first responders at the site of some car accidents, the first measurable snowfall every year usually proves one thing: Many drivers seem to easily forget how to drive in the snow.

“We’ve been real busy today. A lot of slide offs into the ditch, because of the snow,” said Gator Automotive tow operator Sam Douthitt as he pulled a sedan out of a ditch in Carterville on Thursday. “It catches people off-guard and they aren’t ready for it. [...] If the roads have anything visible on them then you should just slow down and be aware you’re gonna slide.”

Tow truck drivers say cars that find their way to the shop because of a crash were probably overdue for a checkup anyway.

“Tires are really critical in this kind of weather,” said Gator Automotive manager Karen Greenberg.

Greenberg recommends drivers take it slow and prepare for the worst, because while they’re happy to help you recover, they would much rather help you prepare.

“The amount of risk involved in towing and the extra time it takes with towing... the road work is not really a money maker." Greenberg said. "and you cannot ever do as much towing as the need is in a short period of time.”

“It can go into 16,17 hour days sometimes when you’re towing." Douthit said.

Douthit warns that he typically responds to a large number of crashes due to black ice in the days following a snowfall event. 

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