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Freeway Service Patrol

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 contact us online.

Freeway Service Patrol 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


Orange County Service Area



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, please visit chp.ca.gov.

Customer Comments

Thank you for taking the time to leave us your feedback. Our operators it!
1/5/24 It was like an angel on the highway - my tire was blown out and smoking. I nervously called Road Service, but they said they wouldn't be here for another hour. That's when the FSP Operator showed up, and he told me with such warmth and gentleness that he could fix this problem. He made sure I was safe and changed my tire as quickly as possible. Thanks to his dedicated help, I was able to get back to my job safely.
Survey I.D. # 19131229845
1/11/24 Love the service! I was not aware of this service. I had called roadside assistance but FSP was so quick. It felt so good to be taken care of when this incident happened. My tire burst completely. I offered a tip but he wouldn’t take it. Happy to see tax money going to an awesome use. Please keep this up! Thank you!
Survey I.D. # 19133204486
1/21/24 I can’t thank the FSP Operator enough for his help and courage. I was driving in the carpool lane and suddenly my back right tire popped. Thankfully, I had room to pull over to the left shoulder but I was too scared to even attempt changing the tire due to the fast traffic of the far left lane. Unfortunately, I did not have service and my calls to my insurance tow provider were not going through. My friend attempted to call AAA, but after fifteen minutes a freeway service patrol pulled over behind us. The FSP Operator came out of his vehicle and asked if I was okay and what happened to my car. After I explained the issue, he briefly explained that he is part of the freeway service patrol and he would gladly change my tire for my spare. That man did a quick job, but he had so much courage to be less than one foot away from traffic passing by behind him. He literally saved the day, my mental health, and I truly appreciate his calm demeanor. Once he finished, he provided me with a pamphlet explaining the freeway patrol service and his card.
Survey I.D. # 19136146814
1/26/24 The FSP Operator was kind, courteous and amazingly helpful. I am so grateful he came along! I have roadside assistance, but they were not helpful at all that day. I'm not sure how long I would have been sitting on the freeway waiting for it or any other help if the FSP Operator did not come along when he did. It was a very dangerous spot where my car died, but he was relaxed and assured me that he had practice in the situation that he was in where he had to fill the tank from the active freeway side of the car. I am grateful for his calmness and his help!
Survey I.D. # 19138674850
1/29/24 The FSP Operator was truly my hero!!! He calmed me down, used his own body to protect me while I got out of my car and he made sure I got into his truck safely!! I felt so safe and relieved when the FSP Operator came to my rescue!!!! I will forever be grateful to him and Thank you is just not enough for what he did for me!!! The roads and all of us drivers are safer because there is the FSP Operator waiting to take care of us when we need him!!!
Survey I.D. # 19137641240
2/2/24 I have made sure to make notice of this amazing employee in several areas, to ensure he is properly recognized, acknowledged, and appreciated as an employee. I was stranded on the Grand Ave offramp of the 22 freeway this morning, and this operator pulled over to help me. I thought he was from my roadside assistance and couldn't believe they showed just after my call; I have been there about 7 minutes. The FSP Operator was so sweet. I was embarrassed, as I was scared and very upset being on the side of the offramp with speeding cars going by. I didn't want to get out of the car and walk for help, but my roadside assistance was estimated at another 35 minutes. I kept thinking how my husband and daughter would be devasted if some texting driver plowed into me. And here came the FSP Operator to save me; he was sweet and calming when asking questions about the events leading up to the breakdown. After speaking, I did say I was low on gas, but did not think I was out. However, he put a gallon of gas into the car; it started up thereafter. I guess my gas gauge was not working correctly; no light went on. He recommended I drive forward and back to see if it drove OK, and then he directed me to the nearest gas station just off the freeway. I grabbed all the money in my wallet to give to him, I did not even know how much it was; he graciously declined, even though I tried multiple times. I hope there is an employee recognition program where this gentleman can be acknowledged and rewarded. Thank you for having such an amazing employee! Praying for his safety, as well as all others like him, while helping motorists stranded on the road.
L. Amaro
2/13/24 The FSP Operator was literally my "knight in shining armor". I was 100% freaking out as there was no where for me to pull over in the Fast Track lanes. I was a mess. I drove on my flat tire for about a minute and a half before I found a safe space, with more room in the shoulder. When he arrived he showed me the brochure and quickly told me about the program. He said he would change my tire for free and quickly get me on my way. I was still on the phone with AAA when he showed up. He explained exactly what he was doing, step by step, and let me know everything was fine, and I'd be on my way soon. He took care of everything very quickly. I'm a flight attendant and was on my way to LAX for work. He was so efficient and fast, that I still made my trip to London. I am so thankful for this service and his professionalism. I offered him a tip and he declined. I was bummed he couldn't take it because I really wanted to show my appreciation for getting me out of that very terrifying situation, safely. He told me about 511 and I will relay the message to everyone I know. Thank you for this service, I'm truly grateful!
A. Aguilera
3/1/2024 The caller would like to file a compliment for the FSP Operator who assisted him on Thursday, February 29 2024. The caller was on the off ramp, going from the 53 southbound freeway, to the 73 southbound freeway when his car died due to not having anymore gas. This caused a major traffic jam as he was blocking the off ramp, but the FSP Operator was able to get through and get him some gas so he could get moving again. He said that the FSP Operator provided excellent service and was incredibly grateful for him.
Customer Comment # 203693
3/6/24 Customer stated that she was driving North on the 5 freeway, by Jeffrey Rd., going at about 65-70 mph. She said that the cars around her were going about 75-80 mph. Then suddenly her car started to dwindle and swerve all on it's own. She said she was scared to get hit but was able to make her way to the right hand lane. She said she was speaking with her husband, deciding if they should call AAA, since it would be too far to tow. But, she looked in her rear view mirror and saw freeway service patrol agent showed up. She said he was like an angel, he was very hospitable, and with a caring attitude, he obviously knew she was shook up.
Customer Comment # 203925
3/19/24 Caller stated that on Saturday 3/16/24 she was assisted by a freeway service patrol agent. She mentioned she was driving on the 22 freeway at about 1:00 PM when she got a flat tire. Within five minutes the freeway service patrol agent arrived and told her to stay in the vehicle for her safety and very quickly was able to change her tire and put on the spare. She mentioned he was her angel and wanted to commend him for his service. She stated she was very grateful for this service.
Customer Comment #204598
3/28/24 The caller stated that she received great assistance on the 405 North at 12:40 p.m. by the Woodruff exit, from an FSP Operator. She states that he towed them out of the freeway, was very kind and very informative, he took good care of them, they were comfortable with the AC on, he calmed them down and parked them under the shade away from danger. She wanted to give praise to him, she said credit is due because he went above and beyond.
Customer Comment # 205124