In this series, we highlight the most integral members of the Urgent.ly community - our service providers! Our network of over 50,000 trucks nationwide and their drivers work around the clock and across the nation to help our customers access superior roadside assistance service. Come meet the heroes who make our wheels turn!
JD Bugbee and his team - Tom, Elijah, and Dylan - keep the gears turning at Autosmith Towing in Jericho, Vermont - where they work 24/7, even on holidays. Burlington, South Burlington, Colchester, Milton, South Hero, Grand Isle, Essex Junction, Richmond, Shelburne, Jericho, Westford, Cambridge, Jefferson, and Underhill are just a few of the areas they serve; JD assures us the guys at Autosmith go wherever the customer needs - “New England and beyond.” The auto shop has been in operation since 2006, and they started the separate towing business in 2012, which JD describes as “a small family business but work like we have dozens of trucks😉.” Autosmith Towing provides jump starts, tire changes, lockout service, fuel delivery, and towing services for Urgent.ly customers.
How did you get started in roadside assistance? Tell us a little about your history and the history of Autosmith Towing.
We got involved with Roadside immediately. You can't really offer Towing without Roadside service. They go hand and hand.
What is your favorite part of the work that you do?
What is our favorite part of the work we do? Hmm, it has to be the diversity in the work we do. And definitely the customer interaction. When we get a call for someone who broke down, their circumstances many don't take into consideration. We get first interaction and of course the customer isn't at their best emotional state. We take that to heart. We know the last thing they need is a for an operator to be numb and not understanding to their needs. We pride ourselves on our customer service. Those interactions result into a loyal base.
Can you tell us about your most memorable roadside service experience?
We received a call from State Police for a winchout in Underhill. Customer was very frantic about her daughter sliding off their driveway and over the embankment. We get there and she asks if we take AAA? I said I'm sorry but we don't. She had already called AAA so I told her I would hang out there until they came. 40 minutes go by since I showed up and you could tell she was getting more frustrated. So I decided to help her out. She didn't have money to cover the cost of the recovery and I was already there. I decided to help her and get her car back on the road so she didn't have to wait any longer. She was very thankful and it payed off. She is now a customer of ours😉.
As someone for whom driving is a big part of your job, what advice do you have for drivers?
Pay attention always watch out for everyone else and just take that extra minute and make sure you do your job right. Asking questions never cost a dime, safety is always a number one priority. If you have to talk on the phone, invest in a hands-free device.
How do you spend your free time - when you’re not towing cars or providing roadside assistance?
Spending time with our families. We have 2 kids and my wife, Tom has a wife and 2 kids as well, Elijah is married and Dylan has family as well. In order to do what we do we definitely appreciate our family time.
Thanks so much to JD, Tom, and the whole Autosmith team for reaching out and taking the time to give us a look inside your world. And as always, thank you for all the work you do to get customers back on the road.
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Many individuals and local authorities have already jumped on the opportunity to remind users to drive safely. There are even signs popping up on highways to encourage safer driving.
Luckily, there are tools out there to help the tech-obsessed (or the poke-obsessed) improve their driving. One of our favorites is an app called TrueMotion Family! The app analyzes your driving in order to provide you with a score - and insights as to how you drive. It's perfect for parents who want to monitor their teen drivers. The app gives parents the power to see where their kids drive, and produces a 'report card' on their driving in addition to an assessment of whether they were driving distracted (using their cell phone). Plus, families have access to roadside assistance on-demand from right within the TrueMotion app.
I don’t remember Ash, Misty, or Brock driving cars in their quest to be the very best, like no one ever was. And there aren’t vehicles any in PokemonGO. At Urgent.ly, we love the game and just like you, we’re prepared to travel across the land searching far and wide to catch 'em all, but we encourage you to put safety first in your travels! Remember that the power of Pokemon is awesome in augmented reality but automobiles are a powerful tool meant for use in the real world and require optimum focus to operate safely. In a world we must defend, you can start by driving safely, and catch and train ‘em all when you’re not operating a vehicle.
Opt-in required. Fees may apply. Visit uber.com/uberdebit for more details.