More than just towing vehicles and repairs

More than just towing vehicles and repairs

Valley News Correspondent

TUNBRIDGE — Kyle Blakeman, owner of Blakeman’s Towing & Repair, started his business a year after he graduated high school in 2008.

While working in construction, Blakeman worked with scrap metals, recycling old appliances or pieces of metal. Additionally, in his spare time, he aided area residents with his tow truck. After a while, he decided to start towing full-time and open a business.

From flat tires to empty fuel tanks to cars that simply slide off the road, Blakeman’s Towing & Repair provides a variety of towing and repair services within the community. Those services have expanded due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

While Blakeman noted the business didn’t encounter too many roadblocks as a result of the pandemic, the business picked up a wider variety of jobs which it wouldn’t have done otherwise.

“When COVID came we really didn’t know what was going to happen,” Blakeman said, “so, we sat down and said we’re going to do everything possible to keep this business afloat and keep everybody employed.”

Jobs like driving U-Haul trucks to Tennessee and Georgia are not in Blakeman’s Towing & Repair typical list of services, but Blakeman was ready to jump at any opportunity that could keep his business operating as usual.

“If (a customer) needed a mobile home moved, we would do our best to try and figure it out even if we had to subcontract to somebody else,” Blakeman said.

Blakeman said the fall and winter seasons bring a lot of tourism and therefore customers to the area. As a result of COVID-19, Blakeman said that, while the number of tourists went down, he felt many tourists ignored the travel ban despite Vermont’s suggestion that out-of-staters stay home.

“I think a lot of people were scrambling to get out of the cities and had nothing to do because they weren’t at work,” Blakeman said. “So, a lot of people went skiing, which brought us a lot of business for sure.”

Blakeman said the demand continued in the summer months as people resumed traveling, boating, using antique cars and taking their campers out of hibernation.

Blakeman also mentioned the quantity of scrap metal donations rising as a result of COVID-19 as area residents likely had more time to go through and clean out their garages and yards.

The scrap metal yard Blakeman’s Towing & Repair typically delivers to was closed for a month because of COVID-19, but the business was able to work around the shutdown.


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