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How to Become a Tow Truck Driver

Tow truck drivers are very much needed in transporting a vehicle to its designated place, especially when it is broken down or it has encountered a collision. The requirements of becoming a tow truck driver are different from one state to the other, but most of them are expected to work late shifts and long time driving. If you wish to pursue this kind of career, understanding the nature of the job and its requirements would be a lot of help.


There are certain requirements that a tow truck driver must meet before he can be employed in a towing company. First, a commercial driver’s license must be obtained from the U.S. Department of Transportation which signifies the driver’s capability to operate a vehicle and a cargo of more than 26,001 pounds. Most states require tow truck drivers to undergo an accredited training, pass a written exam and a driving test before having the license. In fact, this agency will also assess the driver’s physical health like vision, hearing and drug test in order to ensure that the individual can sustain long periods of driving and will not cause accidents along the road.

Second, the tow truck driver must be at least 18 years old and should have undergone a criminal background investigation. Many states require fingerprinting before employment because they want to ensure that they are hiring the right individual for their company. If there are traces of criminal records obtained, chances of getting an employment is least. Third, the individual should also pass a certification exam from organizations like Professional Truck Driver Institute or Towing and Recovery Association of America. Although the certification is not necessary for some employers, it can increase the chances of becoming employed as a tow truck driver. Thus, being certified can be an added impact to the employer.


Every company may have a different set of rules but most of them have similar protocol with regards to the responsibilities of a tow truck driver. Basically, it is the responsibility of the driver to get the necessary information of the vehicle they are going to serve. This should include the vehicle model, plate no., color, location, driver’s name and the reason for towing.  Once the primary details are obtained, the driver should arrive at the customer’s location right away to see the exact problem of the vehicle and provide solution in a simple explanation. A tow truck driver must be prepared all the time and he must be polite in dealing with anxious or angry customers.

Simple repairs like flat tire replacement, jumping batteries or fixing broken wires should also be done by a tow truck driver. If the problem is hard to fix, he must call a technician who can provide roadside assistance but if it is simple, he can repair it all by his self and start attaching cables or chains and winch the vehicle to a truck flatbed. While the vehicle is being towed, traffic laws should be observed in order to provide safety and avoid further accidents. Tow truck drivers usually receive the payment for this kind of service so he must prepare and provide a receipt. Lastly, he must also create a report for the service call and ensure to provide the necessary details like date, time and location.


A tow truck driver should be prepared in all situations. Some customers are very anxious, traumatized or stressed out during the time that they seek a towing or roadside assistance services so the driver should comfort and give assurance that everything is going to be fine. It is the driver’s duty to maintain safety and security all throughout the towing process. He should prepare the necessary equipments needed, including those that are needed for repairing minor damages. Aside from that, the driver should make sure to follow the company’s protocol and the state’s road regulations in order to keep the vehicle safe and free from damages. Lastly, it is his duty as well to maintain the condition of the equipments and to make reports to the company he is serving.

Initial Steps

Experience matters most in becoming a tow truck driver. An individual who aspires to be a tow truck driver should equip his self with experience of towing light to heavy duty trucks. He should have the knowledge, skills and attitude to maintain the safety and security of his customers, and prevent accidents on the road. Lastly, he should also be prepared for any certification exams and drive tests in order to prove that he can drive well in any circumstance.