Q: “Why does it seem that tow trucks show up at the scene of an accident before the police or first responders?”
—Rob Sandhu, Toronto
A: Tow truck operators in some parts of Canada scan police radio to learn of collisions, then race to be first at the scene of an accident. Tow truck operators may be more interested in collecting a bounty from a repair shop than the towing charge for “hooking” your vehicle. If a large reward is paid, the repair shop may cut back on the quality of your repair or boost the bill to make up the difference. To avoid this, try to plan ahead for the eventuality of a breakdown. Have the phone number of a towing service (included for the first three or four years of your new vehicle warranty, or auto club or auto insurance contracted provider) ready in the event of a breakdown. Tell the tow truck operator where you want the vehicle taken.
George Iny is the president of the Automobile Protection Association. Send him your automotive questions at firstname.lastname@example.org