A Blogolitical Sean reader provided the following information in a comment on an earlier post, “Portland tow truck set on fire!”:
Let me give you a couple more things to think about.
These are all the companies owned by a Mr. Gary Coe:
(1) Private Parking Auditors: Patrols parking lots and writes tickets, calls for Retriever for the tows.
(2) Retriever Towing: tows cars for parking infractions, patrols parking lots and handles district 3 police calls. Has two impound lots and shares three of Speeds Supertow's four lots.
(3) Oregon Lien: Puts liens on the impounded cars so that they can be auctioned. They do this for both Speeds and Retriever within about a week of being impounded.
(4) Speeds Auction Yard: Sells the cars not picked up from auction. For both Speeds and Retriever. They also auction cars for just about every charity you could imagine, not for free though.
(5) Speeds Supertow: Normal Towing. You call they come get you. They also handle police calls for district 5 and 8. They charge more than any other tow in town and they give a 20% discount to dealerships and shops. The dealerships and shops in turn charge full price to the cars owner for the tow and make a nice profit for picking speeds.
(6) Fleet Sales West: Custom makes tow trucks and towing equipment. They're the only one in town, so everyone goes to them or has it brought from out of state. They're also called Golden West Towing in California.
(7) Speeds Auto Service: Does all the fleet maintenance for not only the tow trucks but all Gary's other companies and they'll turn a wrench for people off the street. They're also a car dealership for the nicer cars.
(8) Speeds Auto Body: Does all the body work for the fleet of tow trucks and anyone they bump into.
(9) Auto Adventure: Chops cars up for parts and sells those parts nation wide.
(10) Coe Consulting: Sells the secrets to Gary Coe's success in twelve easy steps.
(11) Cascade Coach Town Cars: Drives people around like a taxi but for a lot more.
(12) Pacific Executive Service town cars: Also does the expensive taxi service but mostly to the airport.
Gary has the American dream, a monopoly. He has his fingers in three police districts. No other tow company can claim that inside Portland. He has over fifty trucks (all new) and six impound yards total. Bigger than anyone else in the State of Oregon. Gary controls a lions share of the contracts with dealerships and shops through 20% discount/kick backs. Gary also has his own lobbyist in the Oregon Legislature and has been President of several towing organizations.
The Tow Truck Drivers are poor and manipulated. They make commission off the tow. So its in there best interest to tow a lot and bend the rules, speed, cut corners.
They have no Union, no medical benefits. Most will be hurt several times on the job and will only last a couple of years.
None of these drivers have certification or CDLs. Their training is in-house or if they're lucky a traveling trainer (NATA) will come through town and give them some wall paper. Nobody ever fails those schools and they’re hosted on company property.
All these driver's sign a non-disclosure when hired so they can never speak about the truth.
They Drive 12 to 14 hours a day and have 24 hour on call shifts which means they are on the road more than a driver with a CDL legally could be. Big Rigs are only allowed to drive for eleven hours and they have to keep a log. Many of these Tow trucks are as big as a semi truck too.
Yes, many of these driver's are rude. But under these conditions who wouldnt be. Everybody hates them including their boss, they get little sleep, sacrifice there families, make $30,000 a year for it and are constantly exposed to stress and confrontations.
I hope you'll take all this to heart. I know it might not be printed do to libel concerns, but if you investigate it at all you'll see it's all fact. Thank You.
Thanks to Towmater for providing this information.