The Week's Features
Show floor crowds were robust all weekend.
City suspended three companies with alleged ties to Gasper Fiore
Colors and shapes work together in an explosive backdrop
Provides additional storage for certain medium-duty wreckers
DeFalco’s recovers leaking overturned gasoline tanker
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AT ShowPlace
Las Vegas, NV.
May 9-11, 2018
Tow Expo Dallas
Dallas, TX.
August 16-18, 2018
AT Exposition
Baltimore, MD.
Nov. 16-18, 2018
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Customer service has become a lost art. How often does your business even get a thank you nowadays? In his Management Conference seminar, “Putting the ‘Service’ Back in Customer Service,” Don K. Hudson of Troy Auto Care will share his ideas. His tow company has won several awards, including the prestigious “Service Providers of Excellence Award" from AAA for five years in a row. His session will take place at Tow Expo-Dallas, August 16-18, at the Gaylord Texan Resort & Convention Center in Dallas, Texas.
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American Towman Magazine Presents the Week in TowingMay 23 - May 29, 2018
The 2018 AT ShowPlace-Vegas surpassed the previous records set for attendance and vendors by the previous year’s show. Show floor crowds were robust all weekend.

AT ShowPlace-Vegas [b]Surpasses 2017 Show

The sixth annual American Towman ShowPlace-Las Vegas, which took place May 9-12 at the South Point Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada, was a huge success. Towmen flocked from all corners of the country and the show floor crowds were robust all weekend.

Three live recovery demos by Miller Industries, Jerr-Dan and NRC were just part of the highlights of the three-day event. The seminar program offered each day at the Expo extended from the classroom to the big stage, as hundreds took advantage of the conferences and the heavy-duty hands-on training by WreckMaster.

"With American Towman's input and assistance in getting these training events going, it allows operators, owners and individuals to come to one central location and participate in a number of training events," said WreckMaster's Don Cerovski, who, along with Bruce Campbell, led WreckMaster's 12-hour training class.

The California Tow Truck Association also held its annual convention in conjunction with the American Towman ShowPlace for the second straight year, highlighted by the annual CTTA Industry Leaders and Awards Night.

"It's been incredible. We couldn't be happier with the way the Awards Night has gone," said Eric Gould of CTTA. "You know I usually judge a show by how long it takes me to get through the aisles to my booth and it takes me forever [there]; that's a good sign."

The show concluded May 12 with the Police Towers of America three-hour conference, which featured addresses from President Ron Myers, Past President John Borowski, retired Col. Ken Moerckel and Joe Hollabough, executive director of the Association of Professional Towers-Ohio. D.J. Harrington served as the master of ceremonies. The highly-anticipated revised National Rotation Standard was released at the conference.

AT Expositions President Henri "Doc" Calitri stated that the show experienced a 5-percent increase from the record-setting 2017 numbers.

"So we are on a record-setting binge," he said. "We had 170 exhibitors and sold out the floor and we have had a tremendous response by everybody. Everybody seems to be extremely pleased with the way the show has gone."

AT Staff

Kalyn Siebert Earns [b]Plant Safety Award

Kalyn Siebert recently received the Plant Safety Award from the Truck Trailer Manufacturers Association. TTMA recognized Kalyn Siebert's manufacturing facility in Gatesville, Texas, as the Most Improved in the Truck Trailer Division in 2017.

The ISO-certified facility spans 260,000-sq.-ft. across 31 acres and has an annual capacity of more than 1,000 units.

"We are honored to receive our first TTMA Plant Safety Award and will continue to focus on improving our safety performance, working toward creating an injury-free workplace," said Jake Radish, Kalyn Siebert president.

The TTMA awards are given annually based on plant safety data from TTMA member companies that provide their annual OSHA 300A Summary Form. It is the same data used by the National Safety Council and Bureau of Labor Statistics.


Detroit Towing Battle [b]Flares Anew

The long-running battle over police towing operations in Detroit, Michigan, rekindled this month after the city suspended three tow companies that allegedly have ties to towing magnate Gasper Fiore.

City officials this month suspended Javion & Sam's, Gene's Towing and B&G Towing from the tow rotation after Detroit Inspector General James Heath wrote a letter to Mayor Mike Duggan alleging the firms were secretly owned by Fiore.

The city also prohibited three other tow firms it says are tied to Fiore from obtaining contracts: E&G, Troy Abans and City Wide.

Although Fiore's name isn't formally associated with any of the companies, Detroit officials allege he is the shadow owner. The people whose names are listed with the state as proprietors of the suspended and barred firms insist Fiore isn't involved.

"Gasper Fiore advocated on behalf of Javion & Sam's, Gene's and B&G in connection with the bribe he paid to Celia Washington to receive favorable treatment," Heath wrote. "These companies are linked to Gasper Fiore and Joan Fiore. The towing companies have overlapping business locations, employees and/or office space."

Fiore's ex-wife Joan filed a federal lawsuit against the city May 18, seeking more than $75,000 in damages because she says one of the companies she owns, Javion & Sam's 24 Hour Towing Service Inc., was suspended without cause. She insists her ex-husband, whom she divorced in 2013, has no interest in her company.

Anthony Thomas told the police board he's owned B&G Towing since 2000, and has been sole owner since 2011. He said he leases property from Joan Fiore's The Realty Company.

"I wasn't given notice of this suspension; I didn't receive a phone call," Thomas said. "My understanding was that the Board of Police Commissioners was to be included in such decisions. I've never been accused of any crimes.

"I'm out of business ... with no notice at all," Thomas said. "It's completely wrong."

Deputy corporation counsel Chuck Raimi declined to comment, citing ongoing litigation.


Tow Company Returns [b]Teachers' Cars

An unfortunate mix-up led to a group of teachers having their cars towed away in Wilmington, North Carolina, while they headed to Raleigh for a rally May 16.

According to Judy Howard of Howard's Towing and Recovery, there is a sign in front of the parking lot warning people not to park where teachers left their cars. However, once Howard and the property manager realized the cars belonged to teachers who were taking a bus to Raleigh, they decided to return the vehicles to the lot.

"The issue is squared away," Howard said. "They're up there trying to get more money and we don't want to charge them and make them spend more money. They go out there and teach your kids. They are future of our education. We just try to look out for them."


Michigan Towman [b]Dennis Montague Passed

Dennis Montague, owner of Montague Towing and Armored Self-Storage in Davison, Michigan, died May 11. Montague, 66, suffered a heart attack while working on a call in Forest Township.

Lonnie Saumier, owner of Lonnie's M-15 Towing and Recovery in Davison, praised Montague and said he considered his towing rival to be a friend.

"Dennis was a great person and would go out of his way to help anyone," said Saumier in a Facebook post. "Dennis proved that competitors can still be good friends as he would help with anything we ever needed."

Montague also served Richfield Township as a trustee for 17 years and was also a member of the Richfield Township Lions Club.

Montague is survived by his wife, Patti, four sons, nine grandchildren, two brothers, one sister and many nieces and nephews.


Daimler Opens New [b]Distribution Center

Daimler Trucks North America celebrated the opening of its newest parts distribution center in Grimes, Iowa, on May 16. The company said the new facility is situated just west of Des Moines and enables DTNA to provide faster service to customers located in the Midwest.

"Uptime is critical to our customers' business and having the right part at the right time is essential to achieve a 24-hour or less service turn-around time," said Stefan Kurschner, senior vice president, Aftermarket for DTNA. "The new facility located in Iowa is fundamental to our ongoing investment in our network."

The facility in Grimes is the third parts distribution center opened by DTNA in two years, and the ninth in DTNA's overall supply chain network. This includes the recent addition of a new parts distribution centers in Indianapolis and Dallas.

Source: Daimler Trucks North America.
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WreckMaster President Justin Cruse said that the WreckMaster Convention will bring together towers from all over North America to provide a unique and beneficial opportunity to broaden knowledge.
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