Tow Truck Driving a Risky Business

By: David Norris Email
By: David Norris Email

BRYAN, Texas Tow truck drivers often times risk their lives to pull us to safety, and the job comes with little to no thanks.

Roy Koite has been driving the streets of Brazos County as a tow truck driver for over a decade. During that time, he's seen a lot and done a lot, but mostly he tries hard to stay alive.

"People don't slow down or move over," said Koite.

koite said it's a dangerous business that he wouldn't recommend to anyone.

"I know they see you, but they seem to want to see how close they can get when they go by you. That's what it seems like to me," said Koite.

According to a recent review of accident data by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, injury and fatality rates among emergency responders, including tow truck drivers, are more than twice the national average for all industries.

And when the weather gets bad, like the recent snow and sleet in the Bryan-College Station area, the risk goes up. Icy roads combined with poor visibility make things very dangerous along the roadways.

Koite said he plays it as safe as he can, but you can never predict what will happen once he steps outside the safety of his truck.

"You'd basically have to have eyes in the back of your head to see what's coming down the road all the time when you're working," said Koite.

Still, Koite said he loves his job, and he hopes to stay alive to keep working for the years to come.

"It's not a glamorous or good-paying job," said Koite. "But it's what I enjoy doing."

Tow truck drivers fall under the Move Over or Slow Down law in Texas. If you see a tow truck driver working on the side of the road or freeway, you're required by law to move over to the next lane, or slow down to at least 20 miles below the speed limit.

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