Back To DATOW Software's Home Page

DATOW Software and Industry NEWS


Well, Lauren Marie made her debut about 5 weeks early, but Mom and Dad are old pros when it comes to dealing with preemies. She is beautiful, but of course, we may be a bit biased. Thanks to all for your good wishes. Visit our pictures section on this site to see some photos.

08.30.2000 What has 23 pairs and dresses in pink?

The answer is: A baby GIRL!
We are so happy to be able to tell the world that Pam is expecting, due early March 2001. The CVS test shows 23 pairs of chromosomes (A concern when the mom is over 35 due to the increased risk of Down's Syndrome). Anthony is now nearly 5 and we really wanted to have another before the age differnce became too great.

01.01.2000 A small Y2K issue has come up. See our Y2K statment for details.

12.23.99 It is with great sorrow that we face the fact that fomer Orange County CTTA president and longtime towing professional Mr. Guy Gugliotta lost his battle with cancer and passed away on Tuesday, 12.21.99.

The photo shown here was taken at the 1998 OC CTTA Christmas party. Click on it to see an enlarged version; use your browser's back button to return.

09.14.99 We just received some terrible news. Rich Chappel, executive directory of the CTTA, passed away. He leaves a void that will be difficult, if not impossible, to fill. We are all saddened by the untimely loss of such a friend and tireless worker for the towing industry. Donations to the Rich Chappel Memorial Fund may be sent to:

CTTA c/o Jeff Hunter
PO Box 597
Thousand Palms, CA 92276-0597

Questions may be directed to our CTTA president, Carvel Gay at 818-244-0015

If you would like to write a few words about Rich, you can send them to us here at DATOW and we will post them on our site. Also, if you have a gif or jpeg picture of Rich that you would like to share with the rest of us, send that to us. I don't think that Rich had any family, except of course the CTTA, and we would be proud to honor him and his work for us by putting together a memorial page. The site seems to be the proper place for such a memorial, but that site does not seem to have any attention paid to it in quite some time.

09.13.99 We have recently had a large number of inquiries from towing companies in states that require that sales taxes be applied to towing, mileage, and/or storage. Also, tolls (bridges, hiway, etc.) are becoming more common. Many of these states require that the toll charges AND the taxes be shown as line items on the release invoice. We have begun work on these issues, and some others, and should have them ready soon. Contact us if this is something you are interesed in having. As a part of this, we will also be enabling a "roll-your-own" release invoice.

Also, we have found a minor Y2K issue involving ETA warnings in Truck & Driver.

Also, we have expanded the charge information in Truck & Driver to allow for amounts to 9,999.99 dollars. This allows for large payouts, with precision down to the cents, and it also now matches the field size in Lot Control.

08.20.99 Interesting situation developing here in Long Beach. Click here to see the article in the Long Beach Press Telegram about this. Note that this link may go "cold" at any time, but give it a try.

06.18.99 Whew! We are back from the 1999 Western Regional Tow Expo, and it will take a day or two to recoup our energy. We are happy to report that there were very few calls for support while we were at the show, and that we handled them with minimal delay. READ more about our expo experience in our RANTS and RAVES section.

Also, we want to express our best wishes to the new slate of C.T.T.A. officers for 1999 - 2000 that were installed at the convention. We are proud that the following new officers are long time DATOW Software clients:

C.T.T.A. State Officers


Carvel Gay

Gay's Automotive and Towing


Third Vice President

Evelyn Harden

Jim's Garage & Towing


Chapter Presidents

North State

Earl Peterson

Phil's Automotive


San Joaquin

Kevin McCraken

Bulldog Towing



Kevin Koch

Dave's Club Service

Simi Valley


Glenn Neal

Vacaville Tow


A number of other awards were presented, and we hope to list them here as soon as we can get the list of recipients. Again, our best wishes and Good Luck to ALL the new officers.

06.10.99 Just received the latest version of a program that we really liked, but that had in the past suffered from a fatal flaw. The program is Street Wizard and the flaw is that it was unable to route across county lines. Not only is that no longer a problem, but it looks like they cleaned up the user interface quite a bit. Also, it looks likely that we will be able to integrate it into DATOW Software's Truck & Driver program. We will not have the time to look into this possibility until after the Las Vegas Expo next week, but it is an exciting prospect. How about full mapping across the entire country for about $200 or less? With one button access from Dispatching! Keep tuned for future developments.

05.21.99 Get ready for a busy summer. With the availability of handheld cell phone based internet access devices, there is a good chance that there could be a lot more TA's in your future!

05.21.99 We have added a new section to this site. The idea is that you can e-mail questions to us and we will answer them in a "Q & A" page that other's can read. Please give it a try. Send your questions via E-mail to

We nned your participation to make this work!

05.12.99 We have been working pretty much non-stop the past few days getting the updates shipped. So it was especially nice to get a call from one of our new customers. He called to tell us that he had just come back from the local PD where he gave the towing officer the reports that DATOW generates that show the city how much their "piece of the action" is and other information about the tows they order. This report is required to be filed each month.The officer was so impressed that he asked for our name and telephone number and he also remarked that the other towing companies' reports were totally lame compared with ours. This isn't exactly "news" to us since we hear compliments like this often. But it was an especially well timed compliment, given the hectic nature of the past few days.

What this new client doesn't fully realize, but we are very aware of, is that many operators, when faced with having to pay the city some fee for each vehicle that they tow for that city, OVERPAY because they are afraid of being accused of holding back. They fear the loss of the city contract. We have a variation of the release activity report that includes all vehicles that were towed for that agency BUT that were released AT LIEN. Most cities do not require payment in that case, since they seem to understand that the towing company actually lost money on that tow. The key to this is that you must be able to document this situation. DATOW does that for you.

05.04.99 We just received a report from one of our AAAutoCall users regarding a change in the format of the AAA call. As a result, when our program tries to find the callback telephone number, it doesn't see it where it used to be so it fails to insert it into the call record in the correct field. Instead, it appears as a part of the Location To: field. We have calls into ACSC and expect to have a fix for this pretty soon. Within a week or so. Until then, since this is not a "fatal" error, simply try to live with it. BTW, they did this with NO NOTIFICATION to us about this change.

04.15.99 We just got a call from one of our customers that underscores the importance of good record keeping. This customer pays his drivers on commission, as so many towing companies do. They were recently notified by the California Labor Board that they owed $40,000 in back pay and penalties. (GUILTY until proven innocent.) But, because DATOW Software's Truck & Driver program provides reports that show exactly how long each driver worked on each call, along with totals and other information, this customer was able to prove himself innocent! This resulted in a reduction of the "bill" to $2,000. A savings of $38,000. And he expects that even that $2,000 will be reduced to zero as he provides the Labor Board with even more documentation.

03.26.99 The CA DMV deadline of 04.01.99 for Lien Sale Agents has been extended indefinitly. Legislation is pending. Also, the CTTA is working on a reduction of the surety bond from the current $50K to $10K or maybe even $5K

GOTO Top of this page