Towing companies ready for winter season in Wisconsin

Published: Nov. 29, 2022 at 9:15 PM CST
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EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) -With the snow piling up, it’s impacting travel out on the roads.

From rollovers and crashes to vehicles sliding into the ditch, towing companies across western Wisconsin are ready for a busy season head.

As the snow falls, the calls for service come in at towing companies like Big Rig Towing & Transport in Eau Claire.

“It’s been pretty busy today especially this afternoon with the snow picking up,” said Jake Rasmussen, the dispatch manager for Big Rig Towing & Transport. “We’ve done three or four winch outs and a couple accident calls and stuff.”

Rasmussen said the tow company stays busy all year long, but during the winter tow truck operators respond to more crashes and see more people needing help getting pulled back onto the road.

This weather also means lots of calls at Mikkelson Towing & Recovery in Eau Claire.

“Considering the road situation and the weather, we’ve been pretty busy,” said April Shilts, an owner of Mikkelson Towing & Recovery.

One of those calls so far Tuesday: a rollover crash. If you find yourself needing a tow, Shilts has some reminders.

“If you’re being towed, and you’re in a safe position, stay in your vehicle,” Shilts said. “We ask you to please remain in your vehicle, put your emergency lights on. If you’re not in a safe position, get out safely, so you’re not in anymore harms way.”

Another tip from tow truck companies: leave your key with the vehicle.

“If you get a ride, if you could leave the keys with the vehicle, just the ignition key, it helps us out a whole bunch that way we can put it in neutral and turn the wheel, and it just helps prevent further damage to your vehicle,” Rasmussen said.

As they work to help those in need of their services, tow truck operators said it’s important for other drivers to use caution on the road.

“We did have one of our trucks get hit a couple weeks ago,” Rasmussen said. “Nothing serious. Nobody got injured, but it’s every tow truck driver’s worst fear is getting hit on the side of the road. We all have families. We all want to go home safe to them.”

Wisconsin law requires drivers to slow down or move over when you see a tow truck on the side of the road.

Other ways drivers can help keep the roads safe this winter season include turning your headlights on, maintaining distance between you and other cars and keeping an eye out for flashing lights.