PTROI New QR Code a Big Hit in Peoria at

Midwest Truckers Show and World of Wheels

Early in February, PTROI First Vice President Mike Depoister, Director Donnie Stanton and Executive Director Ed Forsythe all manned the PTROI booth at the Midwest Truckers Show in Peoria. The purpose of attending this event was to roll out our new QR code. It is part of the public awareness campaign that the PTROI has started.
We are going to events to educate the public as to how to respond to wreckchasers and rogue towers. We let them know that if they have a towing company they have used before, they should contact them to see if their company can make it to the scene in a reasonable time. If their company cannot make it, we suggest that they use the PTROI code to obtain a list of our members listed by towns. We advise them to never sign an authorization unless it is requested by a towing company that they have called. We also advise that if the police call their own tow that they generally will have to let the police tow take their vehicle. We also introduced our QR code at this event. It also was well received!
On March 3-5 we were at the Chicago World of Wheels Show. This was held at the Stevens Center in Rosemont. Again, we were well received by everyone we talked to. We would like to thank Jim Bresnahan, Jeff Skvarla, and Larry McKay for their help. We intend to keep on educating the public, as it will help save them some grief and also let drivers and the Illinois legislators see the PTROI in a better light.

News Legislation Member Benefits

Illinois Legislature to Look at Overcharging by Rogue Towers

I do not know how many of you have heard, but the State of Illinois is discussing ways to correct the practice of overcharging for tows. Below is a TV report on the ways in which one company overcharges. There was also a company in the Lasalle area that overcharged for a police tow. It was a heavy-duty recovery that priced out as $221,000.00. Yep, that was two hundred twenty-one thousand dollars.

While there are more than two companies in the state that overcharge, the vast majority of towers are reasonable with their rates, pricing to make a living, but not hurt anyone. Note that neither of these companies are PTROI members. One of them, we even spent a bunch of money to keep out. Click here for more.


FMSCA Hours of Service Revisions take effect on September 29, 2020. Federal Motor Carrier has passed new HOS revisions that appear to be more flexible for CDL operators. For more, click here

Illinois Sexual Harassment Prevention Training Law takes effect on January 1, 2021.  This is the most recent update. This new law states that every employee in the state of Illinois must have this training. The PTROI has, on this website, the Illinois Department of Human Resources model training PDF presentation. This is free and is said to take about 30 minutes.  For more, click here.

         Chicago Passes Licensing Law for Tow Trucks

The City of Chicago has passed an ordinance that will require licensing of all tow trucks. This is being done to fight wreckchasers. The PTROI has vehemently opposed this at considerable cost because, in our opinion, the law-abiding towers will be punished for the wrongs of a few. We had been making decent progress on this law, but at that last moment Chicago did what it wanted to do with no regard for the honest towers. We were told early on by Alderman Villegas that this was not a money deal, but now it appears that it is a money deal. The licensing fee will be $250.00 per truck and up to $750.00 per yard. We will be having zone meetings soon to try to get everyone up to date on the ordinance and it’s particulars. To view the ordinance click here.

Melanie Wishard Wins PTROI Scholarship

Melanie Wishard, whose parents own AtoZ Towing in Loves Park is the winner of this years PTROI Scholarship award. She currently attending Loyola University as she studies to become a physician’s assistant. She expects to graduate in 2024. Our congratulations go out to Melanie!!

The scholarship is open to immediate family members of PTROI members and is awarded in October at the meeting at Lynch-Chicago.




  1. Education and Training: As a #1 Priority the PTROI covers a wide range of topics from operating a tow truck to managing a business profitably to handling the stress of the day to day operations of a towing company.  Through training schools and seminars the tower is kept up to date on knowledge of current laws that pertain to the industry. Click here for more.

PTROI Treasurer Dana Bernagye Wins Big Ed Award.

Our congratulations go out to Dana Bernagye, the PTROI Treasurer, for winning the Big Ed Award. The Big Ed Award was  named after Ed Batson, a PTROI member that passed away many years ago. While Ed was alive he was an active member of the PTROI. When he passed away, he left his gun collection to the PTROI. The gun collection was sold and funds were used to keep the fledging PTROI finances in good order. This award goes out annually to the person that most exemplifies both PTROI and community involvement. Congratulations Dana!!

2022 PTROI Award Winners 







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