Pickups Deliver Services, Goods and Hope to Tornado Victims

Pickups Deliver Services, Goods and Hope to Tornado Victims
Photos and Words By Sue Mead for PickupTrucks.com

Birmingham, Ala. – The hum of generators blankets the stillness as the sun sinks behind the hills here. Punctuating the new reality of life in this Southern state is the wail of ambulances and the flashing lights of rescue vehicles as workers comb the rubble in the grim search for the missing.

The swarm of tornadoes that ravaged the South devastated families, houses, towns and cities. Pickup trucks are some of the best tools to help start putting things back together again, and so we traveled to Alabama to see how they’re being put to use.

Some of the survivors in suburban Archadelphia are visiting the homes they used to live in. Those we meet are happy to be alive and have returned to retrieve whatever is worth salvaging, or simply to try to make sense of the horror. Those who saw and heard the tornadoes said they looked and sounded like a bomb.

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A Ford F-150 trapped in debris and a total loss in a Birmingham neighborhood.

Pickups of every size and sort dot the landscape. Convoys of utility trucks line the highways and byways, as their riders work around the clock to restore some semblance of normalcy within the wide swath of destruction left by the violent twisters, whose winds topped 200 mph.

Pickups troll neighborhoods, and their drivers are offering food, water and goods. At Exit 132 along Interstate 20, trucks are providing nearly every type of service and aid. The trucks and their drivers are delivering what can’t be quantified in tow rating, payload or cargo-carrying capacity — the message of “hope and goodwill.”

Sandra, Marie and James Phillips, along with Brandon Sparks of Birmingham, ride along in James’ GMC 2500 past a rubble field of houses torn from their foundations interspersed with uprooted trees. Other trees have been left standing, stripped of their branches and covered with debris.

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A repair crew from Eagle SWS, an emergency response company, started to tackle damage with a Ram Heavy Duty.

The Phillipses call out to each person they see, offering water and food, and they offer care packages of diapers, toiletries and clothing, as well as cell phones. Representing Good Life, a non-profit group, they leave water bottles along the roadside, knowing that they will be needed when the sun rises tomorrow.

A.J. Farley will be back by then. Farley’s home is a loss, and he also lost his older-model Buick Century. Despite the trauma, he feels blessed to be alive and is happy to show his new wheels: He bought a 2011 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 with his emergency insurance check, so he could carry what he has left and begin a new life. Loading his truck with the few items that survived the storm, Farley says he clung to the floor of his home when the tornado struck.

Farley survived the deadliest twister outbreak since the Great Depression. According to the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, on April 27 more than 328 tornados cut across seven states, leaving in their wake more than 350 dead, thousands injured and scores still missing. It was a day in history that will be remembered for many grim tasks.

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Tuscaloosa, Ala. — "It’s no different from any other disaster," says truck expert Bruce Smith, who lives in Tuscaloosa. "Trucks here in Alabama are being used as they are supposed to be used.”

"They are towing trailers and hauling goods and supplies," says Smith, editor of Pro Pickup magazine. "The pickup is a work tool. It’s the most important tool to help after tornadoes, floods and earthquakes. It’s what people use as primary transportation and the first thing into any disaster area.

"It was like a Bush Hog struck the ground and drove clear from the western border of Alabama into Tennessee,” says Smith, who, along with fellow staffers, has been delivering truckloads of goods and supplies, and using chain saws to help clear roadways. Smith even drove his "project truck" to the community center to provide support. "Randall-Reilly [Smith’s publisher] has been paying normal wages to its staff who are helping, and they have been helping out, too," Smith says.

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Homer Butler, director of the United Way of West Alabama, received two donated Chevy Silverado trucks from GM that were immediately put to use.

GM was an early responder as well, donating a dozen Silverado crew-cab pickup trucks and a GMC Savana full-size van to the Southeastern U.S. United Way. Also, the General Motors Foundation is giving a $100,000 grant to the American Red Cross, while GM’s OnStar is providing crisis-assistance services for subscribers in the affected states, offering free hands-free calling minutes and turn-by-turn navigation, in addition to providing six months of free service and 1,000 hands-free calling minutes for each of the donated Silverados.

"Chevrolet has a strong commitment to its communities, and we are working with our dealers, our employees, and relief agencies to help people in the Southeast recover from the storms," said Alan Batey, vice president of Chevrolet sales and service.

Other truck makers have pledged dollars to tornado disaster relief efforts. Toyota and Nissan have both made contributions to the American Red Cross; Toyota has donated $1 million, while Nissan has designated $115,000 to aid the victims of the disaster. Toyota will also give support and assistance to Toyota employees who lost their homes.

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Utility repair crews were assisted by this GMC Sierra HD.

Grateful to be a recipient of three GM pickups, Homer Butler, director of the United Way of West Alabama, began to use the trucks immediately to distribute goods to temporary emergency locations and loaned one to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Tuscaloosa. “Every vehicle they had was destroyed," says Butler, “and they were renting a pickup. They needed the truck for hauling things. Once all the search and rescue is done, we will develop a long-term recovery committee.

"It was almost more than I could comprehend," Butler says. He was away when the tornadoes hit. "I came back to such destruction and so many people killed and injured; in our city, we had 41 killed and 80 still missing. They are still combing affected areas with dogs.

"I drove through after and literally felt lost — the landmarks are not there, and there are piles of rubble. I don’t know how we are going to get back to normalcy. It will take a good five years to recover."

Marvin Tolley, of Tuscaloosa, whose home looked to be a total loss, had already begun the task of cleaning his yard and putting his life back together, loading the trailer behind his trusty truck.

"It’s just wood and sticks," says the Ford F-150 owner. "We’ll be all right."

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This Nissan Frontier had been inspected to make sure nobody was injured inside the vehicle.

Sales are surging at Townsend Ford in Tuscaloosa, but sales manager Jim Phillips isn’t happy why it’s happening.

"People are doing replacement vehicles for what they lost, and the city has lost everything in the way of vehicles as well," Phillips says. "Business is a lot better, and we’re selling a lot of trucks, but it is not a good thing. It’s going to take a long time for things to be back to normal."

Other dealers are simply victims of the storm. Mike Pick, sales manager of Tuscaloosa’s Contemporary Mitsubishi dealership, says he hopes to salvage 10 of 190 vehicles that were on his lot. He used his damaged Silverado and a few other trucks to help out after the storm and to help move some salvaged furniture out of the dealership.

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Used trucks at a dealership weren't spared damage from flying debris.

"We lost everything," Pick says.

If you want to help, donations can be made to the United Way of West Alabama

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Comments

it is nice to see everybody coming together to help out, it is a sad situation and i wish everybody the best down south it has to be hard to wake up every morning and see everything you have worked so hard to build just destroyed

God bless the victims and to those that have stepped up to help!

I wish I could help!

See this is another reason why chevy is a mile behind ford in logic. Not only does chevy donate trucks and money to a helpful cause , its money that they don't own. Next of all they just give it away for free. If you see the 6th picture down, a gmc truck is being "voluntarily used" while that ford truck and contractors are generating profit....

Let's ask bob why chevy trys to attack ford with its head wedged in its butt.

@Allistar,

Let's not beat this dead horse. Let's not hi-jack this thread.

Thanks Brah!

hey frank,

ask oxi if he likes chevy or ford better!

It is sad to see such destruction.
My heart goes out to those who've lost their homes.
It is always comforting and reassuring to see people pull together in times of crisis to help each other.
Kudos to anyone or any corporation willing to help in any way shape or form, how ever small or large.

Lets not kill this thread with brand bickering.

Remember this, as we hide behind the anonymity of our computer screens :

"April 27 more than 328 tornados cut across seven states, leaving in their wake more than 350 dead, thousands injured and scores still missing. It was a day in history that will be remembered for many grim tasks."

@Lou

are you saying that so bob doesn't yell at you?

@Allistar You need to have some respect or have your a$$ kicked. I know plenty of Alabama boys that would welcome the chance.

I agree. As much as I enjoy arguing with Bob on the Ford vs Chevy topic, this is not the place for it. I wish everyone affected the best.

Ford Chevy Dodge Toyota or not Mahindra gotta respect the guys/gals who help and pray for the best

@allstar, you are the stupidest moron ever! Congratulations on that moron! It's nice to see the rest of the commentors are true Americans. Thanks to all manufacturers that stepped up to help! Allstar, go see your doctor to get the maggots out of your 2 IQ brain.

@allistar

All I can say is, boy you better hope you never need help like these people do. You are a shallow pathetic human being. Your post really shows the true character that you are. Unclebud summed up it best - I think you need to take a trip to Alabama and like daddy always said "Its time for you to get your medicine"

God Bless these people, and thanks for GM helping out!

This post is for all opinions, not just popular ones. The bottom line is GM should not be giving money to anyone whether it be tornado victims or people in Japan. GM just out of bankruptcy doesn't don't have the money at this time. Good job to Toyota.

Americans work the best,together ! We help when help is needed,Good Job People..

Sorry for the loss of life !!

But not sorry for the brand x vehicles that were destroyed (good ridance)

Glad I dont live in the South !!

They talk funny anyways,drives me nutts !! Though the majority are nice good,honest people.

Though they are always saying we will be getting the big one here (earthquake) So far we have no bad weather in the beautiful Pacific North West !! Fairly mild and calm all year around,considering the horrible weather elsewhere ! And my vehicles never,ever rust,no matter how old they are !!

allistar is not a very bright star is he? we all need to reflect on how lucky we are in this great country of ours and support her and all our brothers and sisters that have been affected by this awfull tradgety, please lets put it all of our differences aside now and pray for our neighbors to have a speedy recovery, and a return too some normal prosperous times once again. MAY GOD BLESS AMERICA

As a severe weather spotter for the National Weather Service, PAY ATTENTION WHEN THEY PROJECT INCLEMENT WEATHER!

On April 10, 2011, we had a record outbreak of 12 tornadoes here in Wisconsin and despite direct hits to 2 cities and hundreds of homes destroyed, only 3 injuries statewide.

I was in between 2 mesocyclones, both of them dropped EF1 tornadoes, the second storm I was less than a mile where the tornado dropped. I was calling in my hail report and the cell phone kept cutting out.

Later as I drove down the county road, I saw why. The tornado cut a path through a small town and I was busy clearing debris off the road so the Sheriff could get around. Luckily I carry my ax with me on my rear swing door bumper so it came in handy.

Within a hour most of the town was out clearing debris.

PAY ATTENTION and get a NOAA weather radio to listen in to our reports as we spot and chase storms out there! Being a trained weather spotter, we report in so the NWS can filter the data coming in to make better projections and precise warnings and tracks of storms.

Radar can only do so much, we need weather spotters in the field to relay what is really happening out there to give advance warnings to communities down the line.

I just cannot understand with powerful storms moving into an area, people carry on with their lives like shopping and so forth and they wonder why they get trapped or hurt when the storms move in. Be prepared, not unprepared!

By the way I only got 4 hail dings when I called in my report. 1" diamter hail falling with winds in excess of 60 mph the same time the tornado dropped.

So my Tacoma has been initiated into storm spotting!

Brough to you from the new and improve super OXI, and his trusty er rust, mighty tachoma hehehe

at this point in time, we all could do one thing to turn our country, and economy, around, and I know some of you might not like to hear it, but we all need to refuse, to buy anything, when at all possible, not from an American company, even if in name only, I don't care where the product is actualy built, I am not that closed minded, if we all supported American companies for just a few years this country would turn around so fast, and so would the rest of the countries that make the products for the American companies. We would all profit from it.!! We need to keep the only free market and free country strong, so the rest of the world could be a better place for all. There is no othe country in the position to do so. We all need to help our neighbors, we are all they have.

sandman4X4-

Amen brother!

Good job, Oxi.

@ Dave - I agree that people are free to speak their minds even if it is unpopular.
There is a difference between saying something unpopular and trolling.
Kudo's to all the posters that took the high road.

There are many reasons for corporations or the wealthy to donate money - it may be for altruistic reasons, or it may be for selfish reasons (tax right offs, advertising, look at how great I am, etc) .
Regardless of the reason, it benefits those who need the help.

Lou, There you go again.

As Oxi stated....

I applaud them for the help but...

Let's remember they are a bankrupt company that needed a bankrupt government to bail them out!

GM should stick to being more profitable ON THEIR OWN WITHOUT THE WELFARE CHECK (yes this helps marketing but really...) that $500,000 could have been spent better.

Are we going to want to pay GM when they need another bailout? You up in Canda won't be paying a dime when GM asks for another bailout, so you just need to shut your yap. Thank you.

I agree with Oxi and Dave. Like it or not, a bankrupt GM cannot throw billions of dollars that they don't have to charities. They must be more pudent or else bankrupt GM trucks will be asking for another bailout!

@ Dave -
I was refering to your comment about Allistar.
Yes, we can express our opinions popular or unpopular. Allistar was trolling, not expressing a generic complaint about where GMC (or taxpayers based on your opinion of GMC.) spend their money.

On the topic of bailouts - GM and Chrysler also received bailouts from the Canadian government.

Americans should be more upset than Canadians because GMC used US taxpayers money to pay back the Canadian portion of the bailout.

I am not defending GMC. Never have, never will.

I've made the mistake in the past of expressing my cynical views on these kind of donations. It is the wrong place for expressing those views. All one can do is take it as a lesson learned and to move on.

You obviously do not like anyone challenging your views.

You have 3 options:
1.present an irrefutable argument
2.toughen up
3.stop posting

I was out chasing storms today and filed another report...

http://www.crh.noaa.gov/product.php?site=MKX&issuedby=MKX&product=LSR&format=CI&version=2&glossary=0

PRELIMINARY LOCAL STORM REPORT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MILWAUKEE/SULLIVAN WI
534 PM CDT THU MAY 12 2011

0515 PM HAIL 3 NE RIPON 43.88N 88.80W
05/12/2011 M0.50 INCH FOND DU LAC WI TRAINED SPOTTER

Somebody asked how they could help?

Simple, join a local storm spotter class with your local NWS and start to learn about storms to give advance warning to the public.

Only problem is with they be listening?

@Oxi there is no way to hide from an EF4-EF5. The tornado that travelled from Tuscaloosa to Birmingham killing hundreds was rated a high end EF4, and the Smithville, MS and Hackleburg, AL tornadoes were both EF5. Hiding in an interior room won't help you when your entire house is turned to splinters and carried 40 miles away.

@Everybody, There is nothing left where the tornado was. Nothing. There are accounts of vehicles that were picked up and are still unaccounted for. How far did they go, and how horrible was that storm? The debris from the Tuscaloosa strike fell in Birmingham. A Tuscaloosa checking account register landed in Georgia. What do winds that carry a truck an unknown distance do with a human body, like those that are still missing? What kind of injuries did the survivors sustain? Too bad to share on the news I promise, and many were children. Corporations often get put on the spot, but they don't grasp what has really happened or they would be doing more, and so would you.

@UncleBud,

Plenty of warning days in advance of a high-risk threat and plenty of time to see these storms developing and moving.

I recall the Storm Prediction Center at least 2 days in advance projecting a high-risk threat to that part of the country.

Most people do not prepare for an outbreak like this and carry on with their lives like nothing will happen.

We had a moderate risk assessment for the April 10th outbreak and I was paying attention to radar and reports before I deployed out to the field.

I do not let powerful storms dictate where I will be, I move around these storms and watch them most of the time from a distance so at least my life is not in danger. I pay attention no matter if I am at work or home or on the road traveling.

Sadly most were not ready for these storms. If you pay attention, plenty of time to move out of harms way or if it is not as severe you can hunker down and ride it out.

How many people have severe weather plans in place? This "it won't happen to me" attitude is what gets most in trouble. It can and will happen to you, be prepared and plan for an EF-5 in a storm and be ready to move or be mobile in these types of situations to wait these storms out from a safer location.

You have to pay attention first and foremost!

If I had a tornado warning I'd move to an interior room, assuming the radar echo gave me any reason to believe that the tornado was heading for me. Herein lies the problem. Tornado warnings are seriously flawed. Sirens go off in the entire county when the path of the tornado and the attendant 'polygon' may only catch a corner. This leads to a boy that cries wolf mentality. A siren doesn't make me run for cover, it makes me check a radar. 99/100 people don't know what that means. My wife is a perfect example. She doesn't even know how to read a radar, and doesn't care to as long as she can call me and ask me what's going on. Memphis had 4 sirens in 2 days, while not 1 meso crossed the county line. Even if I had seen the big bad hook on the radar, all I would be able to do would be to hide my family under the stairs, which would be in Jackson in the event of an F5.

@ everyone

what a tragedy that all those people had to endure. it pains me to look at the destruction quite honestly, that could be anyone of us and our families. Anyone that helps out is TRULY an american helping americans!

To all of you people that will sit behind a computer screen and bat your eyes at the fact that Toyota donated $1,000,000 dollars and simply DISMISS it based on what country the company started in should simply MOVE OUT OF AMERICA, your simply not american. The company is even helping its employees out that had a loss due to the storm as well, when noone else is doing that. you people who bash Toyota shouldnt be allowed to breathe the same air as the rest of us TRUE AMERICANS. True americans dont turn their back on others, they help out. A little life lesson, YOU are no more american than ANYONE in this country UNLESS you are native american. THIS DOES NOT include the people who started GM, Dodge, and Ford. WE folks WE are americans the whole damn melting pot, including every single company that chooses to do business in this country, and support american people by creating those jobs! God Bless this Country and to hell with everyone that believes otherwise!

Kudos to GM for pitching in what they could, sure its a write off! but its the RIGHT thing to do to help your fellow americans! Kudos to Nissan for pitching in and ANYONE else who did pitch in! SO WHERE WAS FORD SINCE THEY HAVE SOOO MUCH MONEY AND PROFFIT? Damn you people who wont give credit where credit is due, you AREN'T true americans!!

It blows me away that some of the people on here bash a company that without anyone forcing them to they will help their employees out, meanwhile those same people who bash that company back their choice manufacturer when they arent even listed here as offering ANY help whatsoever and you pat them on the back and scoff and those who DID help out. i just dont understand it...............................

I did a quick search for companies donating to tornado and flood relief. (One could probably find more if one kept looking.)

- Ford Motor Company Donated $50,000 to Feeding America to Aid Disaster Relief Efforts.

- KIA Donates USD1.5 Million to Aid Tornado Relief.

- Chrysler.
Ten heavy duty RAM trucks, filled with disaster relief supplies and one generous check, rolled up to the ISOH/IMPACT warehouse this morning. Sent by the Chrysler Foundation, their mission was to deliver $50,000 cash and truckloads of supplies to be distributed to the most needy families devastated by the recent tornadoes in Northwest OH.

- Volkswagen Donates $100,000 for Tornado Relief Fund

Kudos to those companies.

didn't I read somewere that GM is actualy making $$$ now? even doing better than Toyota? please people what is the big problem? I pay taxes too and I didn't care when GM was bailed? out, I though that if you bail out someone, thing, that it is implied you do not have to pay it back? but a loan is a differnt matter all together.

@UncleBob,

The sirens for the whole county thing is for the lawyers or better put liability and risk management for the county!

When a tornado watch or severe thunderstorm watch is issued, you should be alerted to pay attention to the sky, wind patters, radar and NOAA weather radio.

Sad to say most of society does not know what the tornado sirens mean or what they should do. That is what led to many of the deaths I am assuming during that massive outbreak.

Disastor plans should include severe summer and winter weather. The more prepared, the better chance of survival!

sandman4x4,

GM is NOT doing better than Toyota!

Stop living one quater to the next and look at the big picture. You will see how strong and powerful Toyota is compared to the smaller GM. Heck GM is trading around $33 a share (Toyota is still around $80) and to break even to what they owe us, they need to sell at $53 a share!

With that said, GM still is a horribly ran company that needed mommy and daddy to rescue them when they could no longer compete against companies like Toyota!

With that said, at least General Motors took the top spot back, to become the World's Largest Auto Manufacturer, again!

GO GENERAL MOTORS...now hold onto it this time!!!

@hemi lol,

True, so true!

Toyota has operations in this nation which means they are a part of our makeup and landscape whether the HATERS like it or not!

The fact they have 18 plants here is amazing!

I have toured Toyota's massive and actually the largest auto plant in North America in Georgetown, KY. One massive facility that employs close to 8,000 "AMERICANS" alone!

In fact the University of Kentucky ran a study at how many jobs in Kentucky are the result of just that one plant. Result was over 70,000 in the state alone!

Toyota is here in this great nation whether you like it or not. They employ good paying jobs for "Americans" and yet these bozo's do not care for their fellow countrymen!

In the past 20 years Toyota has been building many plants in states like Texas, Mississippi, Indiana, West Virginia and Michigan... yeah states in the U.S.

OXI READ THE PAPER take the toutota rose colored glasses off, acept the facts. If every American were too buy American we wouldn't need akk this junk on our streets

and OXI you want to talk about hail? my Dakota was in my folks driveway during a hail storm, not one dimple on it, my mothers avalon has to go to the body shop (lease car) before she could turn it in, 1,900 damage!!! my fathers camry is still sitting there with more dimples than a Howdy Duty convention!!

@ sandman4x4

i just cant understand why you type the things you do............ seriously bud, if it werent for ALL of the auto manufacturers we would all be buyin junk. the competition makes everyone better, and it troubles me that you really believe everyone should buy only stuff that an american company makes EVEN if they have it built in a different country????? If your reasoning is you believe they would move production BACK to the US then you sir are just plain niave. It actually makes me laugh at you when i read that nonsense. think for a second about what your saying..........

IF an american company (buy american we are stating a company that started here.) employs a couple office buildings full of people just for logistics and paperwork ect. and has all of their products built outside the US so it costs them less to build their said product then your just supporting a whole bunch of foreign families and a few handfuls of americans. YOU say this is a better idea than for example we'll use toyota (since you hate them so bad)

Toyota who started selling vehicles in the USA in 1957 that was a Japanese company from its roots. Fast Forward to now. Toyota Motor Sales USA (TMS) operates as a subsidiary of Toyota Japan. So, TMS main focus is to design vehicles for the North American market, engineer it for the North American market, and build vehicles for the North American market BY PEOPLE THAT LIVE IN THE NORTH AMERICAN MARKET. So your money you spend with Toyota here in the US gets returned into the US and North America by way of almost 40,000 direct Employees and 200,000 indirect employees. what ISNT american about that? BTW Toyota's crash test dummies that they have patented that can read 106 to 109 data points will soon be used by the IIHS and NHTSA for their crash test ratings since the dummies they use now only test between 9 to 20 data points. This dedication they have to build quality vehicles in this country for the people in this country makes them just as much american as YOU are. They've been in this country over 50 years, probably longer than you've been alive i bet.

In closing i think i would MUCH rather support a company that does business in this country with as much class as Toyota does, rather than support a company that hides behind an american badge tryin to squeeze just as much money out of you as they can for the cheapest product they can build for you that you'll buy. i think you should rethink your logic, by your idea noone in this country would have jobs after a few years. the companies YOU would support would be building the cheapest thing they could (by employees in a third world county) because they would know you would buy it regardless. I like my idea much better thanks

I live in AL in the middle of all where the tornado's hit. This week I helped a friend move the remains of his family's belongings. My Ford, a Toyota, a Nissan, and a Chevy were all used. Nobody ever mentioned truck brands, or trucks at all except the guys Questioning whether or not I could get back up a steep hill I backed my truck and trailer down to get the remains of stuff in his storage building. (It did make it out) I have also hauled my tractor around helping move trees, leftover parts of houses and vehicles that were in places tow trucks couldn't get to. Again brands were never mentioned. The damage is unreal. Pictures do it no justice.
I was lucky and the closest tornado missed my house by about 5 miles. My point is The people affected do not care who or what company offers help. They are just happy to get it, and it is much needed. Thanks to everyone who has helped, regardless of what you drive or what country you are from. I promise it is appreciated. I have seen the tears to prove it.

@ alton - best post ever!

@Buy American or say Bye to America!

See this is where you guys just do not understand the auto industry:

Toyota back on top, beats BMW in global brand value survey

Toyota was back in the number one slot of the Millward Brown BrandZ Top 100 - a survey of the top global brands. The Japanese automaker's brand was valued at $24.2 billion, an increase of 11 percent over last year.

The survey measures consumer sentiment towards a brand and then assigns a monetary valuation to it.

Toyota's name or brand is the best in the industry! In fact not one of the big 3 are on the top 100 list. I would expect Ford but they never made it.

You can throw punches at Toyota by fabricating things like floor mats and gas pedals but they keep coming back like a giant and their share value is still hovering near $80!

And I will not respect GM re-taking the number 1 spot back! It took a WELFARE check from mommy and daddy, they benefited from their masters and owners grilling of Toyota last year with fabrications and a massive earthquake and yet Toyota may fall just a few thousand below GM.

GM is a sissy and baby that needed their big bully to get back to number 1.

Now if GM did it on their own, I would respect that but federal government WELFARE check and Congressional bashing and an earthquake?

No way in hell will I recognize GM being number 1 next year!

Oxi -
Toyota is also Government Motors. In the depths of the financial collapse, the U.S. Federal Reserve pumped billions into Toyota.

Fudge! Ford and Toyota took government money! Eventhough it was repaid, they still took it. Okay, so I will add ford and toyota to my list of carmakers I don't buy from. Looks like my next truck will be a honda ridgeline. Oops!

what is so hard to understand lolhemi? you and oxi think toyota is manufacturing in this country out of the goodness of there hearts? its because labor in this country(down south), is cheaper than in japan. they won't dare open a factory in the north, where the UAW dictates how they should run, but FORD, CHRYSLER, GM does becouse thats where they started, and you guys belittle them for trying to do better by going to Mexico ect. to try to make ends meet, so they can stay competitive? I will agree they did make junk for a while there, and we have the other makes to thank for the great stides they have made in reaching the level of quality now to stay competetive, so now you would cut your nose off in spite of you face, come on man, this is your country you are talking about here, your fellow countrymen, can't YOU see what your doing, if everyone was fat and happy it would be a different story, it IS a shame they had to get help from the government to save good jobs, better jobs than they would get from toyota or nissan in the south, sure they are better than most jobs down there, but they don't compare to a good UAW job. So even in light of these facts you would still debate the facts, I won't debate this anymore, in my heart I know I am doing the right thing buy my country, maybe if things do turn around I might change my mind, but a lot of things would have to change, not the least of which would be a level playing field of American manufactures being able to sell there whole line in japan, whatever the japanese people would like to buy, and they would buy if able, Harley Davidson is able to sell there, and they are the # 1 in over 800cc in the Japanese home mkt. I don't realy know how they are able too, maybe because they do import and use a lot of Japanese parts in the manufacture of there products. But then again so do the American auto co. too. and on a seperate note I agree with you Alton, and my prayers are with you and you neghbors.

Toyota was NOT bankrupt like GM!

GM was and still is a mis-managed company that needed mommy and daddy to not only get a WELFARE check from but for them to also slam their main global competitor to take a competitive advantage!

Toyota is a great company while GM is a loser company that was BANKRUPT!

Indiana is NOT the south and nor is West Virginia!

Average wage for UAW is $55/hour while at Toyota it is $50/hour!

Most of that $5 is wasted on dues that get them nowhere but closed doors and $4/hour jobs down in Mexico!

GM imports the equivalent of 4 auto plants from foreign countries like China, Mexico, Canada, Austrailia and South Korea!

If they are such a U.S. company, than why aren't those 4 plants here in the U.S.? Why did GM have to move those 4 U.S. plants and import 33% of what they sell here?

In the last 20 years Toyota went from no U.S. plants to building over 2/3's of what they sell here from the U.S.!

GM the last 20 years has eroded their U.S. workforce for CHEAP LABOR in Mexico, Canada, China, Austrailia and South Korea!

In fact GM wil be the FIRST auto company to build a vehicle and import it from China and see it as a GM vehicle in the U.S.!

So GM takes taxpayer money to increase their imports from foreign nations! Why should we even care about the UAW when this is happening right in front of you!

@ ALTON

Sir you are a true american! god bless you and your willingness to help your fellow neighbors, i only wish i was in a position to stop what i was doing up here in ohio to come down and help out.


@ sandman4x4

in the south you say;
1. here is the list of states with many suppliers in them.

California, Utah, Texas, Arkansas, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Tennessee, South and North Carolina, Kentucky, Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, New York, New Hampshire, Maine, Ohio, Indiana, MICHIGAN, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Missouri, Illinois, and Iowa. thats a total of 25 states, HALF of the Entire USA makes parts for Toyota.

2. here are the states with Research and Development centers and Design centers.

MICHIGAN, Conneticut, New Mexico, and California.

3. and here are the states that have manufacturing facilities

California (2), Texas, Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee, Kentucky (2), Missouri (2), West Virginia, and Indiana (2). thats 13 manufacturing facilities in the USA.

Furthermore, if their business model was GOOD they wouldnt need to ship out to other companies to stay competitive. thats ALWAYS been their problem, their only worried about the bottom line and Toyota employees make just as much as UAW workers do. Union protection can unfortunately breed mediocrity among fellow employees. If the company treats its employees right there would be no need for a union to step in which is why the union cant get into Toyota. The employees dont want it.

We are fortunate that everyone in this country doesnt share your thoughts, if so we would be driving garbage vehicles that cost too much and broke constantly. and most of what we drove would be built in a 3rd world country while the fat greedy executives from the detroit 3 would be even richer than they are now. great plan bud. if you study this issue a little bit more you'd see these companies are/were failing because of broken business practices and poor business models. it has nothing to do with other companies, you must understand no other auto manufacturer would ever have had a chance IF the detroit 3 didnt keep acting as if noone could bring them down, it was their own blatent arogance that brought them to their knees and nothing else. you keep believing what you want, i know better.

Yeah, if you treat your employees right and fair, why the heck would you need a union!

Unions today are mostly political (, job security for the heads of the unions) they do little for workers rights because we have federal laws and rules in place to protect workers. Unions are a thing of the past here!

I'm looking foreward to seeing the "Toyota is foreign therefore bad" bunch explains this:

A foreign Italian truck maker who imports their HD trucks into the USA from Mexico.



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