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Can you say turf war

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by DJ Contracting, Dec 6, 2010.

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  1. DJ Contracting

    DJ Contracting PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,392

    Yeah I just seen this on the news and I don't think they will be networking any time soon. :dizzy:

    SAGINAW COUNTY, Mich. -- Landscaping isn't an easy business, whether the weather is warm or cold, but for two Mid-Michigan lawn care businesses, it got especially rough when their competitors took their equipment.

    Eric Oswald owns a snow removal business in Carrollton. He said he panicked Sunday when he couldn't find the front end snow plow he had left outside of his shop.

    "I was extremely worried because it's critical to my business," Oswald said.

    Oswald learned he wasn't the only business missing equipment right before the week's predicted snowfall. That same day, a few miles away, Rob Garpiel reported a similar plow had been stolen from one of his off-site repair shops.

    In both instances, the companies are located in isolated industrial parks. The thefts happened Saturday night, and because of their size, both owners said only someone in the industry could have ripped off the plows so quickly. Each plow weighs 1,000 pounds and costs nearly $13,000.

    And when the truck was stolen from Garpiel's, it was taken before a worker had replaced a leaky hose.

    "He also noticed that there were hydraulic oil stains in the parking lot and down the road,” said Garpiel. “He got in his truck and followed the oil stains like a hound dog."

    The stains led to Ope's Lawn Care and Snow Removal in Saginaw and it's where police said they found both of the missing plows.

    TV5 went looking for the owner of Ope’s Lawn Care, but the person who answered said the owner, Andrew Opalewski, wasn't available. TV5 then drove to the main office in Saginaw Township, but it was locked and no one answered.

    "I'm upset with the whole thing, that this even had to happen," said Oswald.

    "It's frustrating to know that one of our direct competitors in the area is operating where someone in the organization is taking property to benefit himself and put us in grave jeopardy."

    A lawyer for Ope's prohibited the owner from talking with TV5, but late Monday, the Saginaw County Sheriff's department confirmed that an employee, not the owner, is the target of their investigation.

    Here's the link http://www.wnem.com/news/26038438/detail.html
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2010
  2. 06dmax

    06dmax Member
    Messages: 67

    wow its amazing what low levels people will stoop to now a days aint it
  3. Jguck25

    Jguck25 Senior Member
    Messages: 594

    Now that is low. Talk about business ethics, or lack-thereof. I would be extremely pissed if that happened to me. I cant believe someone would do that, but I guess it shows how tough and competitive this market is right now because of the economy.
    I hope that this gets figured out and they find out if the owner had anything to do with it. I find it hard to beleive that an employee would do that solely to benefit the business that they only work for, not own. If that is true though, I would feel bad for the business owner for all the bad publicity. Guess you have to be extremely carefull who you hire.

    If it was the owner i hope every one of his clients drop him immediately.
  4. CGM Inc.

    CGM Inc. PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,598

    WOW! we got some stuff stolen as well. They caught the Guys too.
  5. FordFisherman

    FordFisherman PlowSite.com Addict
    from 06611
    Messages: 1,613

    Followed the hydraulic oil trail right to the suspects biz...that's just great! Bet that's the only time he'll be grateful for a leaky hoseThumbs Up
  6. skidooer

    skidooer Senior Member
    Messages: 248

    thats the guy that bought my Boss steel cutting edge last year
  7. Lugnut

    Lugnut Senior Member
    Messages: 250

    Hopefully it was an employee and not the business owner. Not that it makes it any better for the guys whose stuff was stolen, but its an even sadder state of affairs if it was a business owner behind it.
  8. snowtech

    snowtech Member
    Messages: 66

    wow, i have worried about having salt stolen but never thought some sob would pull in and hook up to my plows. glad they caught the dirty sob
  9. DJ Contracting

    DJ Contracting PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,392

    Really :laughing:

    Yeah apparently it was but how would you explain where the plows came from to the boss. :eek:
  10. EdNewman

    EdNewman Senior Member
    Messages: 254

    Curious about what kind of plow costs $13,000.00 !?!?
  11. DJ Contracting

    DJ Contracting PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,392

    I think that was both v-plows
  12. EdNewman

    EdNewman Senior Member
    Messages: 254

    Guess that would make sense.
  13. EvenCutLawnCare

    EvenCutLawnCare Senior Member
    Messages: 207

    I initially thought that too but the story says:

    "Each plow weighs 1,000 pounds and costs nearly $13,000"
  14. Brant'sLawnCare

    Brant'sLawnCare PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,756

    Wow, that's kinda crazy! Good thing they found them. I was kinda worried because I had a plow sitting outside of my shop for about a week. Luckily nobody stole it or anything.
  15. wahlturfcare

    wahlturfcare Senior Member
    Messages: 323

    thats great thay they found who did it.

    I myself have another guy in town who likes to vandalize mine and others properties to get them for him self. whether hitting a parked car while plowing or pushing snow into the loading dock areas. luckily most people know hes a low life and wont show up till sometimes 3 days later if he gets hired.

    People like him and thiefs always have whats coming to them sooner or later.
  16. michigansnowguy

    michigansnowguy Junior Member
    Messages: 3

    read the story

    I feel for the owner on this one, the story says he had nothing to do with this, but he is still getting the grunt of this. On the bright side it looks as though we are getting the winter started off, and it looks like more snow on the way ussmileyflag
  17. DJ Contracting

    DJ Contracting PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,392

  18. NW Snow Removal

    NW Snow Removal Senior Member
    Messages: 533

    we have had a truck stolen in each of the past 5 seasons. every year. They already broke into one of my trucks this year to try and steal a control box for the spreader. Yard dogs must've finally scared em off.
  19. SSS Inc.

    SSS Inc. PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,376

    Didn't the owner notice the plows that weren't his in the yard? I pretty sure I would notice equipment that wasn't mine showing up at our shop. Seems to me if the owner had nothing to do with it he would have gotten to the bottom of it right away to protect his own company maybe even call the police himself.
  20. hairygary

    hairygary Senior Member
    Messages: 149

    As others have said it makes no sense the owner knows nothing. If the employee steals a plow on his own doing, he is going to take it to his house and not the shop where he is employed from, unless the place is a fence for stolen property. the fact that the owner referred statement to his lawyer is another sign he is involved. If he was reputable owner he would come out and make a statment to protect his business name, but he remains mum, so he doesnt piss of the employee who got arrested, so the employee doesnt roll on him.

    Lets put it this way, if I worked for a reputable auto dealership and decided to steal a car on my own doing, Im not going to take the car to the dealership, on the risk of somebody else seeing it and linking it to me, Im going to take it home and let it cool off. But if the dealership is shady and will help me get rid of it, Im gonna take it there.

    This plow company reeks of being shady.
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