Towing Equipment Search:

Lost in Translation

Mar 17th, 2017 | By | Category: Geri Roskopf's Blog

An article in a trucking trade magazine read:  Trucking lost in translation. Is the disconnect with the general public partly a language barrier? 

I was curious as to what the author had to say on this topic and the nature of the “disconnect” he described between the “vehicle transporting people and darting through zero-to-sixties and the other pulling 40 tons and big, rectangular boxes in back.” I believe there is not only the a disconnect between the general public and the trucking industry, but there is also a disconnect between the both of them and the towing and recovery industry.

The author mentioned it could be more like bad press. When the public hears and thinks about trucking it’s mainly when the public sees a bad accident. The heavy truck that crushes the car gets the headline, but many times it’s the passenger car that was at fault. It’s the same as the negative perception the motoring public has with regard to towers and major accidents. How often is the news media focused on how long it took to get a roadway cleared and only shows the tower loading up the vehicles — making it look like it’s the tower’s fault for the back-up?  They don’t focus on how long it took rescue, fire and law enforcement to do their jobs first.

The author pointed out that even the regulatory agency that handles big trucks in the U.S. – the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration – doesn’t fit the description. When he asked a woman what she thought a “motor carrier” was, she answered: “The only thing that occurs to me when you say ‘motor carrier’ is those trucks that carry cars.” She was thinking of a car hauler.

I suppose the towing and recovery industry isn’t alone in struggling with the translation of what our industry is to the motoring public. Wrecker, flatbed, car carrier, tow truck, light-, heavy- or medium-duty; we in the industry know these terms, but what exactly does Joe driver think?

Something for us to think about.