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  Eye on the East Bay: No More Mr. Tough Tow Guy
November 20, 2011

Eye on the East Bay: No more Mr. Tough Tow Guy
Contra Costa Times
Posted: 11/20/2011 12:00:00 AM PST

Anyone who has undergone the small trauma of getting a car towed for illegal parking will be glad to know that Richmond now requires tow operators to undergo sensitivity training.
Councilman Tom Butt vowed to change the "tough guy" culture of the towing industry in the summer after trying and failing to intervene on behalf of a resident who beat the tow truck to her illegally parked car.
Butt stumbled upon the scene and tried to prevent the tow by physically blocking the truck, but to no avail. In the end, the resident was forced to retrieve her car across town and pay hundreds of dollars for an avoidable tow.
Now, tow truck drivers and managers will not only have to undergo city-mandated customer service training, but they will have to pay for it themselves, according to a unanimous City Council decision last week. And residents who beat the tow truck will be able to drive away, albeit for a small fee.