Motorist Services - Freeway Service Patrol

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  • Freeway Service Patrol

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    Your friend on the freeways

    Orange County freeways can be stressful in the best of times, but add traffic and a mechanical problem, and you could be in dire need of assistance–and a friendly face, which is where the Freeway Service Patrol (FSP) steps in. FSP is a unique tow truck team that patrols Orange County's freeways during peak commuting hours to help motorists whose vehicles become disabled on the highway. You may also call 511 from your cell phone and select Motorist Assistance for on-freeway assistance during FSP Operating hours. Our goal is to keep traffic moving and reduce congestion by assisting with minor roadside repairs and removing disabled vehicles from the roadway.

    Best of all, FSP services are free to motorists. Our trucks and drivers help people get back on the road with limited essential assistance from a jump start to a gallon of gas or simply changing a flat tire. We'll even help take vehicles to a safe location off the freeway where motorists can seek additional assistance if necessary, all at no charge to the motorist.

    The FSP program began in 1992 in cooperation with the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) and the California Highway Patrol (CHP). The Orange County Transportation Authority manages the program, and the CHP provides dispatch, oversees the operation of the contracted tow companies, and provides field services whenever law enforcement is required.

    If you have any questions or comments, please contact Motorist Services at MotoristServices@octa.net, or provide your comment online.

    To complete the Freeway Service Patrol customer survey, please visit www.fspoc.net

    FSP Operating Hours

    Monday through Friday:

    • 6:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

    Saturday and Sunday

    • 10:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
    • I-5 - South of Alicia Pkwy,
    • SR-22 - Harbor Blvd. to SR-55
    • SR-91 – East of SR-57
    • I-405 – I 605 to SR-73
     

    FSP Does not Operate During the Following Holidays:

    • New Year’s
    • Memorial Day
    • Independence Day
    • Labor Day
    • Veteran’s Day
    • Thanksgiving and Day After Thanksgiving
    • Last Week of December for Holiday Break
    • New Year’s Day
     

    Service Area

    Service Area Map

    Download Map - Available Time of Services

     

    Safety Tips

    It is always good to know what to do while waiting for help to arrive. Here are some safety basics recommended by the California Highway Patrol:

    1. If you can, move your vehicle onto the right shoulder out of traffic lanes.
    2. If involved in a traffic collision, move your vehicle to a safe location if possible before exchanging insurance information.
    3. Stay inside your vehicle with your seat belt on until help arrives. If you must exit the vehicle, stay as far away from the roadway as possible.
    4. Use added caution in bad weather since a passing motorist could lose control of their vehicle

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Because there are always questions, here are some answers to the basic questions we hear the most.

    • What services can the Orange County FSP provide?

      If your vehicle stops running, the FSP can help by:

      • Offering you a gallon of gas if you ran out
      • Jump start your dead battery
      • Refill your radiator and make minor hose repairs
      • Change a flat tire 
       
    • What if the FSP can’t get my vehicle running?

      It will be towed from the freeway free of charge to a pre-designated on-street location.

    • If my vehicle is towed to one of these locations, will the FSP help me get to a phone?

      Yes. The FSP will take you to the nearest phone so you can notify a friend, relative or auto club.

    • How will I recognize the FSP?

      All FSP tow trucks are white with the FSP logo on the doors. Drivers wear blue uniforms and bright yellow-green safety vests with the FSP logo.

    • Are Orange County FSP drivers certified?

      Yes. Drivers receive their certification only after completing a CHP training program.

    • Can the FSP tow me to a private repair facility?

      No. FSP only tows vehicles to locations identified by the CHP. The FSP is not permitted to recommend other tow companies or repair facilities.

    • Which freeways do the Orange County FSP patrol?

      Check the map for FSP coverage..

    • What happens if FSP is unavailable or if my needs are beyond what FSP may provide?

      If FSP service is unavailable or if the need is beyond what the FSP provides, 511 may assist a motorist by helping to arrange service through their Club Towing, the CHP Rotation Tow program, or by contacting a Friend or Family Member.

    • What Is The CHP Rotation Tow program?

      The CHP Rotation Tow Program allows licensed and approved members of the towing industry to participate in a rotational tow list managed through the California Highway Patrol. The purpose of the program is to equitably distribute highway-related service calls from the public when other services are not available or appropriate and ensure that the public receives ethical and fair treatment from private tow companies who participate in the program.

      The CHP Rotation Tow Program services are available 24-hours a day, 365 days a year.

      There is a charge for Rotation Tow Program services. Rotation Tow providers are to make rates available to customers upon request. PLEASE REQUEST SERVICE RATES WHEN THE ROTATION TOW PROVIDER ARRIVES.

      Tow operators are not required to accept checks but are required by law to accept a valid credit or debit card.

      To learn more about the CHP Rotation Tow Program visit https://www.chp.ca.gov/Programs-Services/For-Law-Enforcement/Rotation-Tow-Program

    • Click here for Freeway Service Patrol Fact Sheet

    Customer Comments

    The FSP and its Operators receive compliments every day. “Thank you so much for taking the time to leave us your feedback - it's much appreciated!"

    • 4/4/22
      The FSP Operator approached my disabled vehicle in less than 10 mins. He saw me from the opposite side of the freeway and came to help. He was very professional and courteous. He guided me through the steps and made sure my spare tire was properly installed with proper amount of air. He provided more information about the Freeway Service Patrol and shared about other types of services, which was very helpful. The FSP Operator instructed me on several safety matters, what to expect when driving on a spare tire, the speed, the ride, which lane would be preferred. I offered to pay for the service, but he kindly refused and thanked me. After the tire change, I began to merge into the slowest lane of the freeway. I could see that the Operator was using his vehicle to help me get into the lane. I was on the slowest lane and going 55 mph, I could see the Operator following my vehicle so I can drive for few distance. The FSP Operator is a savior of the day for my family. I thank the Operator and telling my friends about the experience. People like him makes this world so much safer and better. Thank you, FSP Operator. You are my hero!
      Survey I.D. # 13436052932

    • 4/18/22
      The FSP Operator understood that I was scared. He reassured me and let me know that I would be taken care of. He directed me on what to do and helped me with the tire. He was very professional and polite and I am extremely grateful to him. Even after he changed the tire, he took time to ensure that I would be safe - explained to me how best to get back onto the freeway again and what I needed to do next in terms of care for my car. He is a SUPERHERO! I offered to pay him but he would not accept it. I am extremely grateful to him for his quick response and his efficient work and kind nature. THANK YOU!!! He is an unsung hero.
      Survey I.D. # 13448370476

    • 4/25/22
      The FSP Operator was BEYOND professional. From the way he greeted me and asked me what the issue with my car was, do I need service, how long have I been waiting, making sure I was out of harms way with respect to traffic on the 5 all the way through how he prepped my vehicle for a safe tow to the drop zone (which he explained very clearly to me) to the way he packed up his truck, put the ancillary tow equipment away and wished me a good day. It was a really great experience in the midst of a very stressful breakdown.
      Survey I.D. # 13457478152

    • 5/15/22
      I was in the fast lane on the 57 freeway south when my driveshaft disconnected and torn a hole in both my muffler and gas tank. I was stranded in the center cradle of the 57-22 merge next to the water-filled safety cans. No sooner had I started to call AAA for help when an FSP truck pulled up in front of me and offered to tow me to safety. She was a true lifesaver, especially with cars moving 70mph+ on either side of me. She safely towed my pickup to a location where the AAA driver could easily find me. Their truck, by the way, pulled up 15 minutes later before FSP could even unhook my vehicle. The FSP tow operator was extremely professional and treated me with the utmost respect. She should be commended for her excellent efforts which, in my opinion, went well beyond anything I would expect from an employee. Be sure to thank her again for me.
      Paul J.

    • 6/23/22
      The FSP Operator was very professional and helpful in our time of urgent need. Our right rear tire became disabled and was beyond repair while traveling on I-5N. This situation left us in a very unsafe position on the far left side of I-5 N near the carpool lane. After a failed attempt at repair with a can of fix a flat, I became very nervous with children in my car and no hope of crossing 5 lanes of traffic to exit safely onto surface streets. The FSP Operator arrived shortly after, he greeted us with a smile, information about his role, and immediately took charge of the situation. He knowledgeably positioned his truck in such a way to provide safety to the passengers in my vehicle. He then did a safety check on my spare tire and proceeded to change the damaged tire with the spare in only a few minutes. He was so polite and reassuring, even offering advice on how to safely re-merge into traffic and exit. His services to us on this day were so important to the safety of my family and other drivers on the freeway. Thank you for having such a polite, kind, and knowledgeable employee to assist my family during such a stressful time.
      Survey I.D. # 13504237207

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