Do Texans Get Free Roadside Assistance and Towing!?

A couple of times a year I’m asked if it’s true Texans get free roadside assistance just for living in our glorious state. Usually the question comes from a client either because they saw it on Facebook or received an email which has been circulated (multiple times now). No, it’s not some fake news article and there really is an 800 number on the back of your Texas driver’s license stating it’s for Texas Roadside Assistance.

But like anything that sounds too good to be true, there are some things every Texan should know. So, before you cancel the roadside assistance coverage on your car insurance policy or your AAA membership, let’s address what is provided and what’s not.

Facts:

  • There is a number for Texans & it’s on the back of your driver’s license
  • The number is (800) 525-5555
  • This service was established in 1989
  • Please do not use it instead of 911, it’s not intended for that
  • The service is designed to help motorists with a legitimate need for assistance on Texas roads
  • The hotline is answered by Department of Public Safety personnel
  • Information is then passed on to the nearest police department, sheriff’s office, courtesy patrol or DPS office
  • It’s designed to respond to
    • People stranded with car problems
    • Hazardous road conditions
    • Debris on the road
    • Suspicious activity at a rest area
    • Obviously intoxicated or dangerous drivers

This is an excellent service however, there are a few things to be aware of before you use it.

  • Tow trucks are not dispatched at the expense of DPS or the Texas Highway Patrol.  If a tow truck is called, you will have to pay the bill
  • Our Texas Highway Patrol officers are not certified to repair your car nor do they carry a tool kit with them
  • For their safety and yours they do not perform repairs
  • They do not carry a gallon of gas with them to help you if you run out of gas
  • They do not perform locksmith service if you lock your keys in your car

The bottom line is if there’s a cost to be incurred, you will be responsible for paying the bill.  Me, I’m holding on to my roadside assistance plan! Have you used this service?  If so, share your experience with me on my Facebook, Google +, and LinkedIn pages. I’d love to hear from you!

Thanks!

Ed Wise

Wise Insurance Group

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