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American Towman Magazine Presents the Week in TowingMay 22 - May 28, 2019
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Winch OUT in LA

0-Untitled 30eefby Jim "Buck" Sorrenti

Family owned and operated Pepe's Towing Service was established in Los Angeles, California, in 1978 by Jose and Delfina Acosta. As the business grew, sons Jose Jr. and Manuel "Manny" followed in their father's footsteps by taking an interest in the towing business.

In March 1997, Jose Jr. and Manny became full-time employees bringing renewed energy and fresh ideas. In 1989, Lorenzo Navarro became part of the Pepe's team and established himself as an integral part of the company.

With over 100 years of combined towing service behind them, Jose Jr., Manny and Lorenzo are prepared to continue the service and values established by Jose and Delfina.

On Jan. 25, 2019, they received a call from the California Highway Patrol-South Los Angeles Division to respond to the Willow off-ramp from the southbound 710.

"This guy drove his tractor with a loaded 80-foot trailer through a 'short cut'," Josh said, "and got himself in a horrible situation. The trailer was carrying a full load of steel railroad I-beams. This call was handled with my L.A. trucks."

Josh responded in the 2001 Peterbilt 379/Century 1160 rotator, operator Jacob Lares in the 2002 Peterbilt 379/Century 9055 integrated boom and operator David Celis in the new 2019 Peterbilt/Century 1075 rotator.

The crew used their Century 9055 heavy to winch the tractor from the front while their Century 75-ton and 60-ton rotators lifted it from the middle and rear of the trailer.

"The front of the tractor, landing gear of the trailer and rear end of the trailer were all sunken into the ground," Josh said. "This made straight winching it from the front impossible, which is why we needed the rotators to lift from the rear and the middle. Normally we would use just one truck to lift from the rear, but the extremely long length of 80-foot made that difficult.

"If we just lifted from the rear," he continued, "then the front of the trailer would be stuck. If we just lifted from the front or middle, then the rear would still be stuck. We lifted from the rear and the middle to get it up in the air, then rotated our booms counter clock wise at the same time it was being winched from the front."

With the experienced crew and the right equipment, they were able to get this very long tractor and loaded trailer combo back onto the solid roadway.

Josh stated, "This one was way more difficult than I thought it would be, but we got it done. After we winched him out, the driver went on to deliver the load of I-beams himself to an unknown destination."

Show Yours @ TIW
Do you have a recovery to share with TIW readers? Send some pics and info to our Field Editor Jim "Buck" Sorrenti at jimchaos69@yahoo.com; your story may even be selected for print in American Towman magazine!
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