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One Locked Car Door Away From Becoming A “Dateline” Special

, , , , , , , | Legal | January 16, 2023

It was a cold morning in November when I was headed to work and blew out a tire. I safely navigated the car to the side of the interstate — for which I’m very thankful — and put my hazard lights on. With no spare tire in my trunk, I called roadside assistance and got an ETA, and then I called work to tell them I would be in as soon as possible.

As it was not quite 4:00 am, it was still dark. I was waiting for the tow truck when a man wearing raggedy clothes and covered in dirt knocked on my window. I have seen way too many movies to just trust someone who walks up to my car.

Me: “Yes?”

He motioned for me to put the window down.

Me: “Are you with [Wrong Towing Company]?”

Man: “Yeah. Open the door.”

Me: “Go away.”

I purposely named the wrong company to see if he would correct me. When he didn’t, I started filming. The man pounded on the window and tried to open the door, which I had already locked. My voice was still calm and firm but my heart was racing. 

Man: “You f****** b****! Open up!”

Me: “You need to leave.”

Man: “I’m with [Wrong Towing Company]! Now open the door!”

Me: “So, where’s your tow truck?”

Man: “Open the door!”

He kicked my car’s panel and pounded the window.

Me: “The police are on their way.”

This was a lie, but the man left. I watched him in my mirror as he crossed the divider to the other side of traffic and disappeared into the woods beyond.

When roadside assistance arrived, I told them about the encounter. The man driving the tow truck drove me to an auto shop to get a new tire and then to the police station to make a report before taking me back to my house.

The man outside my car was known in the area, apparently homeless and addicted to drugs. I never heard anything more about him, so I assume he’s still out there somewhere.

We Hear The Rabbi’s Daughter There Can Teach You To Tango

, , , , , , | Working | January 3, 2023

My car has developed engine trouble. I am able to limp into a parking lot. Fortunately, the lot is empty. Since I’m still under warranty, I call the car company’s hotline.

Representative: “[Company].”

Me: “Hi, my car is in limp mode. I have managed to pull into the parking lot of the [Town] Jewish Community Center.”

The representative takes down all my information.

Representative: “Okay, sir, now how will we find the car in the parking lot?”

Me: “I am in the Jewish Community Center parking lot. It’s Saturday. It’s the only car there.”

Representative: *Stifles a chuckle* “Got it!”

Drive Drunk, And That’s What You Get

, , , , , , | Legal | CREDIT: whipssolo | July 20, 2022

I’m the owner of a larger tow company that has the majority of local police departments’ contracts for accidents and impounds. Last night, I was called out at 0030 hours for a rollover one-car accident. It was no big deal, but it was in the county’s largest city, about twenty miles from my office and home. I drove out and recovered the vehicle using a flatbed tow truck.

I am driving back from the accident scene with the totaled car on the back of the truck. I am on a two-lane highway — one lane going each direction with a double yellow line in the center — which has a speed limit of fifty-five. I come across a car going forty miles per hour and occasionally drifting toward the shoulder or the yellow line. After about five minutes of this, I see through her rear window that the person is drinking from a bottle.

I immediately pick up my phone, dial the non-emergency dispatch number, and explain the situation to them. They start an officer out to intercept the driver as, from my description, they have checked all the boxes for a DUI stop.

An officer pulls up behind me while we’re going down the road and turns on his red and blues. I flip on my white and yellow lights as I slow down, signaling the officer to go around as I have no shoulder to go to. As this is happening, the car in front of me immediately SLAMS on its brakes, causing me to lock up my air brakes and just barely miss rear-ending them. The police officer, luckily, is already in the opposite lane, and by the time he reacts to slow down, he has passed both of us.

We are now at about ten miles per hour, and the officer is leapfrogged to the front of the line. He turns his car at a forty-five-degree angle and stops, stopping the car dead in its tracks. I stop with my lights on behind him about two car lengths back, again at a forty-five-degree angle to protect everyone from any oncoming traffic as we are now blocking half of the road.

I jump out and walk around the back of my truck and up the shoulder of the road toward the officer’s cruiser. As I’m doing this, the driver jumps out of her car and starts screaming.

Driver: “That person is stalking me! I’m scared for my life! That rapist followed me from the pub I was at!”

The officer on scene is the same officer I just spent over an hour with on the road cleaning up the wreck that is still on my truck. Out of pure shock, I turn to the officer and say:

Me: “You know there is no way I was anywhere near her, right?”

Thankfully, he confirms it isn’t possible. The driver does not like this one bit. She starts cussing the officer out.

Driver: “Do your job! I pay your salary and that makes you my servant!”

A second officer arrived and parked behind my truck with lights on. I fell back to direct the light traffic that was coming through. As I was directing traffic, I listened to this belligerent woman insult these officers over and over. Of course, she failed the field sobriety test, and out came the breathalyzer. She blew a .12, and as soon as the handcuffs came out, it was like someone lubed the woman up with grease as she was slipping and sliding out of the two officers’ hands.

I watched for probably five minutes as they wrestled her to the ground and finally got her into cuffs. The first officer approached me and asked if I’d like to impound the woman’s car, too. I happily accepted and had it loaded on to my wheel lift in about two minutes.

I was just awoken not too long ago by a call about the woman. She was asking about her car at my office, and one of my dispatchers called to double-check that there wasn’t a hold on the car. It turns out the woman had to wait sixty minutes before we could release her car, as all DUI arrests in that county have a mandatory twelve-hour impound on the vehicle. I’m sure the girls working my office were thrilled to have the company.

The Worst Kind Of Entitled Jerk

, , , , , | Legal Right | CREDIT: whipssolo | June 18, 2022

Content Warning: Fatal Car Accident

 

It’s around 11:00 pm on a Saturday night, and I’m sitting at home, just getting ready to go to bed. I’m an on-call tow truck operator, and I figure I’ll be going out early the next morning. Right as my head hits the pillow, my two-way radio chirps and a dispatcher speaks:

Dispatcher: “Hey, [My Name], are you still awake?”

Me: “Yeah, I’m up.”

Dispatcher: “Good. We’ve got a one-car accident in [Next Town Over.] The police department wants it expediated, so please hurry, but be safe.”

Me: “Ten-four. I’m out the door.”

After a roughly twenty-minute drive, I’m headed out of this small town looking for the accident. I see it: the coroner and forensics vans parked in the road amongst a dozen squad cars. A typical one-car accident has one officer sitting with it for paperwork reasons with the tow operator. I know things just got a lot darker than I was originally told.

What had happened was six kids between seventeen and twenty had been in an SUV while driving drunk and only the driver had a seatbelt on. The vehicle swerved off the road and the driver went to correct. However, he overcorrected, and long story short, the vehicle ended up rolling down the road in and out of the four-foot drainage ditch next to the road. All five passengers were ejected and died on the scene.

I set up my tow truck at a seventy-degree angle across this two-lane road and start to work with forensics and the coroner to remove the vehicle from the ditch as well as preserve as much evidence as possible. No sooner than I get the winch tight on my truck do I hear the frantic beeping of a car horn.

I turn around and DIRECTLY BEHIND ME is a woman in her forties who is now just holding the horn down, letting it blare nonstop as she’s yelling out of her window. I ignore her and turn around to go back to this delicate job I’m in the middle of, wondering how this woman got past the police roadblock that was roughly a third of a mile up the road at the nearest intersection to keep traffic out of the area.

As I’m slowly maneuvering this 8,000-pound vehicle from its roof onto its side, the honking stops. Maybe eight seconds later, I feel a hand grab my shoulder and attempt to spin me around. I’m 6’3” and 280 pounds, so there is absolutely no way this woman — around 5’4” and maybe 160 pounds — is achieving this goal. I let out a sigh as I stop winching on the vehicle and look at the sky, asking every god I can think of for the strength to not headbutt this woman.

I turn around.

Me: “Ma’am, the road is closed due to a fatal accid—”

Woman: *Cutting me off* “I don’t care what you have to say. Just get out of my way; I’m late!”

I’m extremely annoyed now, and I talk over the woman’s continued complaints.

Me: “LISTEN! Five people just f****** died here, and there is absolutely no way anyone is driving down this road for hours. I suggest turning around and driving back through the police roadblock you somehow got around now!

She opens with that line that we’ve all heard a thousand times.

Woman: “Excuse me! I live right there—” *points back behind her vehicle* “—and I have to use this road to get to where I am going. You will move your truck now or I’m calling the police!”

By this time, the forensics crew has heard all the yelling over the loudness of my truck idled up and one of the forensic officers comes over. Forensics crews do not dress like police, especially in the middle of the night on the weekends. They’re dressed in plain clothes but carrying a badge on them, and they’ll put on a hazmat-style suit if needed. None were needed on this scene — just gloves and such.

Woman: “Which one of you is the manager? This man won’t move his g**d*** truck and let me through. I’m calling the police!”

She is actually holding her phone to the side of her head and talking to what we will later find out is 911.

Forensic Officer: “Ma’am, I am the police, and I don’t kno—”

Woman: “I don’t want to hear any more g**d*** excuses! MOVE. THE. F******. TRUCK. NOW.”

She claps between each word. I respond in kind.

Me: “YOU. DUMB. B****! DO. YOUR. TWO. REMAINING. BRAIN. CELLS. CONSTANTLY. COMPETE. FOR. THIRD. PLACE?”

Forensics Officer: *Stifling a chuckle* “Ma’am, if you don’t get in your car and leave this crime scene now, you will be arrested.”

Just as the forensic officer finished saying this, a squad car came screaming down the road from the same direction the woman had come from and stopped behind her vehicle. The officer hopped out of his car, and the very first words he said were the woman’s Miranda Rights.

The woman screamed, kicked, and swore that everyone else should be arrested, and she even tried to spit on me (which caused her to catch a charge for tampering with evidence, as we were on an active crime scene). By the time it was all done, her other charges were obstruction, assault on an officer, misuse of 911, and interfering with an investigation. She took a deal that netted her eighteen weekends in the county jail.

However, I did tow her car, as well. On Monday morning, I met her husband and he couldn’t have been more embarrassed. He apologized over and over as he paid me and then inspected the vehicle and signed off that we didn’t damage it. The impound cost roughly $600.

Sometimes We Look At Men Who Are Married And We Ask… “How?”

, , , , , , , | Right | May 13, 2022

Working in a breakdown (roadside assistance) call centre, we would naturally have extremely busy periods in a day, but equally, there could be times when we wouldn’t get a call for ages. These times were useful for getting some admin work done — especially for the team leaders — but now and then there simply wouldn’t be anything to do.

In one of these rare periods, my coworkers and I are sitting about and chatting. The conversation has turned to discussing particularly memorable calls, whether for spectacular rudeness, unusual situations, or otherwise amusing conversations.

All our calls are recorded, and evidently, the team leaders keep a “hall of fame” directory in the system, and people begin requesting their favourites. The first they play is from one of our team to the recovery agent.

Teammate: “Hi, this is [Teammate] calling from [Breakdown Company]. I’m just checking in on the progress of the [car model] you’re recovering for us?”

Agent: “Ah, yes, in Harrow?”

Teammate #1: “Hello, yes, can you hear me?”

Agent: “Yes, Harrow.”

Teammate #1: “Harro, yes, can you hear me?”

This goes on for longer than you might expect.

Agent: “Mate, I’m NOT saying, ‘Hello’, I’m confirming the location of the recovery, which is in the TOWN, Harrow!”

Teammate #1: “Oh… right. Sorry!”

We stop the recording there and move on to the next one. It starts off as a pretty standard call; the driver sounds a little agitated but is polite to our teammate. Partway through taking some details, the caller suddenly explodes:

Caller: “WILL YOU STOP F****** TALKING TO ME WOMAN?!”

Teammate #2: *Who is a woman* “Erm…”

Caller: *Talking over a raised voice in the background* “Sorry [Teammate #2], I wasn’t talking to y— SHUT THE H*** UP! I’M TRYING TO TALK TO THE BREAKDOWN PEOPLE!”

There is a heated discussion between the caller and the woman in the car. Shortly, there is a sound of a car door being opened and then slammed shut.

Caller: “Sorry about that. The wife thinks it’s all my fault the car’s doing this. You know women, all a bunch of b****es, right?”

He makes a strangled noise, seemingly remembering he’s talking to both a woman and a complete stranger.

Caller: “…and men, we’re all b*****ds, too! Haha… Anyway…”

The rest of the call proceeds without incident. As it’s wrapping up:

Caller: “Okay, thanks, [Teammate #2], we’ll wait to hear from you! And sorry for calling all women b*****s! Bye!”