It’s their job: Portales man went from trucking to towing

David Welch is owner and operator of A-1 Towing in Portales.

Background: Welch grew up in Portales and graduated Portales High School in 1969. He and his wife, Pam, who does the bookkeeping for the business, have three sons and a daughter. Welch started in the trucking business right after high school.

“I hauled cattle for years,” Welch said.

Years in business: Welch started A-1 Towing four years ago.

What made you choose the profession? “I’ve just always wanted to be in the towing business,” Welch said. “When I got out of the trucking business, it just seemed automatic. I was already used to the odd hours.”

What does the job entail? Responding to broken-down cars, car wrecks and police impounds at all hours.

“When the phone rings, you get up and go, 24-7,” he said.

Welch uses a flatbed recovery truck to load the disabled vehicle and haul it to a dealership or wrecking yard. He also does vehicle unlocks, jump-starts and flat changes.

What training do you need for the job? Welch says a lifetime of driving trucks and operating heavy equipment gave him most of the experience he needed. He gained that experience on the job over the years. Pam went to a school to train in reading and verifying vehicle identification numbers. Welch had to apply for a state license to operate and place his business in the police rotation for tow truck operators.

What do you enjoy most about the job? “All the interesting people you meet,” Welch said. “You meet all kinds from all walks of life.”