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Tow­ing is cou­pling two or more objects togeth­er so that they may be pulled by a des­ig­nat­ed pow­er source or sources. The tow­ing source may be a motor­ized land vehi­cle, ves­sel, ani­mal, or human, the load any­thing that can be pulled. These may be joined by a chain, rope, bar, hitch, three-point, fifth wheel, cou­pling, draw­bar, inte­grat­ed plat­form, or oth­er means of keep­ing the objects togeth­er while in motion. Tow­ing may be as sim­ple as a trac­tor pulling a tree stump. The most famil­iar form is the trans­port of dis­abled or oth­er­wise indis­posed vehi­cles by a tow truck or “wreck­er.” Oth­er famil­iar forms are the trac­tor-trail­er com­bi­na­tion, and car­go or leisure vehi­cles cou­pled via ball or pin­tle and gud­geon trail­er-hitch­es to small­er trucks and cars. In the oppo­site extreme are extreme­ly heavy duty tank recov­ery vehi­cles, and enor­mous bal­last trac­tors involved in heavy haul­ing tow­ing loads stretch­ing into the mil­lions of pounds. Nec­es­sar­i­ly, gov­ern­ment and indus­try stan­dards have been devel­oped for car­ri­ers, light­ing, and cou­pling to ensure safe­ty and inter­op­er­abil­i­ty of tow­ing equip­ment. His­tor­i­cal­ly, barges were hauled along rivers or canals using tow ropes drawn by men or draught ani­mals walk­ing along tow­paths on the banks. Lat­er came chain boats. Today, tug boats are used to maneu­ver larg­er ves­sels and barges. Over thou­sands of years the mar­itime indus­try has refined tow­ing to a sci­ence. Air­craft tow one-anoth­er as well. Troop and car­go car­ry­ing glid­ers are towed behind pow­ered air­craft, which remains a pop­u­lar means of get­ting mod­ern leisure glid­ers aloft.