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ATTENTION ALL PENNSYLVANIA TOWERS!!!!!      

We have an update for you on Auto Return!!! We have just received this official update from PSP concerning the Auto Return Pilot Program in the western part of the state, and we wanted to pass this on in order that all towers have the correct and official answers to questions about it. To everyone who got involved and helped with this, thank you, I would like to thank all the Board members of the association for the hours spent on this issue, and a BIG thank you to Ron Bressler and Shane Staley for attending the meetings with the State Police regularly, as well as the wonderful job they did at the public hearing in Harrisburg As well as all the towers from the west end of the state that kept on this. Thank You All Pa Towers for your support and efforts.
  
November 10, 2014
 
 
Mr. Ronald M. Bressler, President
Pennsylvania Towing Association
2563 Valley View Road
Morgantown, Pennsylvania  19543
 
Dear Mr. Bressler:
 
This letter is to inform you that the Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) Third-Party Administrator (TPA) Towing Pilot Program being administered in partnership with AutoReturn, in Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Crawford, Erie, Lawrence, and Mercer Counties, will be discontinued effective 2359 hours on November 12, 2014.
 
Although the PSP TPA Towing Pilot Program is being discontinued, the PSP is extending an invitation to all towing service providers who participated in the pilot program to be added to the tow lists and call rotations at the Troops and Stations they provided towing services for during the pilot program.  Towing service providers who did not participate in the TPA Towing Pilot Program, but provided towing services for the PSP prior to the commencement of the pilot program, will be invited to rejoin PSP’s network of towing service providers at the discretion of the PSP.  Towing service providers accepting this invitation will immediately be added to the tow list(s) at the appropriate PSP Station(s).  By accepting this invitation, towing service providers who participated in the TPA Towing Pilot Program but did not tow for the PSP prior to the commencement of the program will be required to pass an inspection of their equipment and facilities by PSP personnel within 180 days of the discontinuation of the pilot program.  Towing service providers who did not participate in the pilot program, but opt to rejoin PSP’s towing network, will be required to pass a re-inspection of their equipment and facilities by PSP personnel within 180 days of rejoining.  Towing service providers who do not pass the required inspection/re-inspection will be promptly removed from the PSP tow list(s) at the affected       PSP Station(s).
 
It is the policy of the PSP to provide the necessary assistance to motorists in need in a timely, efficient, and safe manner, and to quickly restore the free and safe movement of traffic, while ensuring the safety of the motoring public, emergency services personnel, and towing service providers.  The PSP is dedicated to exploring ways to improve the management and administration of towing services and dispatch, while addressing the concerns of all affected stakeholders.  The PSP believes the continued examination of potential improvements to these processes will be extremely beneficial to the towing industry, the motoring public, and our emergency service partners.    
 
I would like to thank the Pennsylvania Towing Association for its valued insight and feedback during the TPA Towing Pilot Program.  The PSP is looking forward to working with your organization in the future as we continue to explore ways to improve emergency towing services for those who live, visit, and work in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
 
If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact, Lieutenant Gerhard W. Wendt, Director, Logistics and Support Services Division, Bureau of Research and Development, at 717-772-4887, or via email at gwendt@pa.gov.
 
 
Sincerely,

 
 
Lieutenant Colonel George L. Bivens
Deputy Commissioner of Operations
Pennsylvania State Police
 
 
CB/PDB
 
cc:    Deputy Commissioner of Staff
         Chief Counsel
         Director, Legislative Affairs Office
         Director, Bureau of Patrol
         Director, Bureau of Criminal Investigation
         Director, Bureau of Information Technology
         Director, Bureau of Staff Services
         Bureau of Research and Development – Logistics and Support Services Division
         Project 2012-0182 (Final Correspondence, Final Drafts)

 

 
 
November 10, 2014
 
 
Mr. Ronald M. Bressler, President
Pennsylvania Towing Association
2563 Valley View Road
Morgantown, Pennsylvania  19543
 
Dear Mr. Bressler:
 
This letter is to inform you that the Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) Third-Party Administrator (TPA) Towing Pilot Program being administered in partnership with AutoReturn, in Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Crawford, Erie, Lawrence, and Mercer Counties, will be discontinued effective 2359 hours on November 12, 2014.
 
Although the PSP TPA Towing Pilot Program is being discontinued, the PSP is extending an invitation to all towing service providers who participated in the pilot program to be added to the tow lists and call rotations at the Troops and Stations they provided towing services for during the pilot program.  Towing service providers who did not participate in the TPA Towing Pilot Program, but provided towing services for the PSP prior to the commencement of the pilot program, will be invited to rejoin PSP’s network of towing service providers at the discretion of the PSP.  Towing service providers accepting this invitation will immediately be added to the tow list(s) at the appropriate PSP Station(s).  By accepting this invitation, towing service providers who participated in the TPA Towing Pilot Program but did not tow for the PSP prior to the commencement of the program will be required to pass an inspection of their equipment and facilities by PSP personnel within 180 days of the discontinuation of the pilot program.  Towing service providers who did not participate in the pilot program, but opt to rejoin PSP’s towing network, will be required to pass a re-inspection of their equipment and facilities by PSP personnel within 180 days of rejoining.  Towing service providers who do not pass the required inspection/re-inspection will be promptly removed from the PSP tow list(s) at the affected       PSP Station(s).
 
It is the policy of the PSP to provide the necessary assistance to motorists in need in a timely, efficient, and safe manner, and to quickly restore the free and safe movement of traffic, while ensuring the safety of the motoring public, emergency services personnel, and towing service providers.  The PSP is dedicated to exploring ways to improve the management and administration of towing services and dispatch, while addressing the concerns of all affected stakeholders.  The PSP believes the continued examination of potential improvements to these processes will be extremely beneficial to the towing industry, the motoring public, and our emergency service partners.    
 
I would like to thank the Pennsylvania Towing Association for its valued insight and feedback during the TPA Towing Pilot Program.  The PSP is looking forward to working with your organization in the future as we continue to explore ways to improve emergency towing services for those who live, visit, and work in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
 
If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact, Lieutenant Gerhard W. Wendt, Director, Logistics and Support Services Division, Bureau of Research and Development, at 717-772-4887, or via email at gwendt@pa.gov.
 
 
Sincerely,

 
 
Lieutenant Colonel George L. Bivens
Deputy Commissioner of Operations
Pennsylvania State Police
 
 
CB/PDB
 
cc:    Deputy Commissioner of Staff
         Chief Counsel
         Director, Legislative Affairs Office
         Director, Bureau of Patrol
         Director, Bureau of Criminal Investigation
         Director, Bureau of Information Technology
         Director, Bureau of Staff Services
         Bureau of Research and Development – Logistics and Support Services Division
         Project 2012-0182 (Final Correspondence, Final Drafts)

Please visit our Legislative page for new information about the PSP 3rd Party Dispatching Program !!

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News Feed.

Here is an update on the 3rd party dispatch program that we have for you. The following are notes from the meeting that the Towing Association had with PSP and Auto Return:

On December 19th the Pennsylvania Towing Association(PTA) met with the Pennsylvania State Police(PSP) and Auto Return(AR).  Ron Bressler and Shane Staley represented the PTA.  Lt.Wendt, Lt. Krol, and Trooper Matiskella represented PSP.  Ray Krouse represented AR.  The meeting was held to brief the PTA on the Third Party Towing Pilot Program. 
 
Lt Wendt reiterated that this Pilot program started because PSP wants out of towing.  Lt. Krol told us that he reached out to 24 State Representatives, 9 State Senators and the Committee Chairperson for Veterans Affairs & Emergency Preparedness, briefing them on what PSP was doing with the Towing Pilot Program prior to implementation.
 
The program has begun in PSP Troop E.  Troop E is comprised of 6 stations: Erie, Corry, Meadville, Franklin, Warren, and Girard.  Erie and Girard stations began the pilot towing program on December 3rd.  As of the 19th, PSP and AR were preparing to bring the Corry and Meadville stations into the Pilot. No information was given on rollout dates for the other 2 Troop E stations.  Ray Krouse confirmed the towers involved with the Pilot were responding on scene within an average of 26 minutes.  Mr. Krouse also told us the AR dispatch system has been running smoothly with no downtime, except for brief system maintenance.
 
We were told that Troop D will begin the pilot towards the end of January.  PSP will be hosting meetings with all towers on January 3 at the Butler County Community College, 107 College Dr, Butler, PA 16002.  PSP will be hosting two morning sessions with light and medium duty tow companies and an afternoon session with heavy duty towing companies.
 
PTA raised concerns from several of our members that PSP is “ lowering the bar” for tower qualifications.  We brought to their attention reports of towers that previously would not have met PSP qualifications, now towing for AR.  We expressed concern for safety of the public when untrained towing operators are utilized.  Lt. Wendt indicated that qualification requirements of towers would remain the same as is currently in place with the exception of the requirement that a tower have a roll back and a wrecker.  PSP did not feel the wrecker requirement was necessary.
 
Shane Staley

Pennsylvania Towers, just to make you aware, the towing association is aware of the 3rd party dispatch program that they are talking about and are working on finding more out about it. More details when available. Please feel free to share with us what you hear by email. Thank You
 

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