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  #1  
Old 11-15-2010, 2:55 PM
RedFord150 RedFord150 is offline
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Default Impound Storage Fees Daily Charge Limit

I helped a good friend of mine get his daughter's car out of a tow yard on Saturday. The car was towed for being parked on a public street with expired tags. The tags were expired because the daughter got another car and this car was not being used. Nobody is disputing the tow was justified.
The tow occurred at 4PM on Friday. The registration was brought up to date Saturday morning at AAA and we arrived at the tow yard at 11AM Saturday morning. My friend was charged for 2 days of storage at $50 per day. The car was only in the yard for 19 hours.
The tow yard claims you get charged for each calendar day at 9AM. Friday was charged at time of tow at 4PM. Saturday was charged because car was there at 9AM.
Obviously, $50 a day for a spot in a tow yard is on the high side. 19 hours of storage resulting in 2 days worth of charges is downright dishonest. Is there a way to find out what rates the tow company is legally permitted to charge?
Thank you.
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Old 11-15-2010, 3:03 PM
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I think these are specific to a city or county. There is no statewide standard. Example: The City of Bell where all those corrupt politicians (oxymoron?) were able to charge extremely high rates and went out of their way (check points) to impound cars and trucks as a "revenue enhancement".

I doubt you will be able to get redress. These things are designed to make tons of money for the city and the towing co. Sorry.

.
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Old 11-15-2010, 3:25 PM
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You can talk to the towing division of whatever Police of Sheriff's Department has jurisdiction in your area. I can tell you that the fees you listed are close to what is charged in the area I work. If a car is towed by my agency the owner can expect to pay about $115 for a department release, $150-180 for a towing company release and $40-60 a day for storage. I am willing to bet the tow company is following proper guidelines by charging by the calendar day.
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Old 11-15-2010, 4:16 PM
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Ya, its quite the racket. As far as I know its not regulated by the state.

I know of at least one area where its possible for the car to be in inpound for 2 minutes and its 2 days of storage simply because the date changed
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Old 11-15-2010, 4:39 PM
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I thought the fees were regulated in the CVC. I'll need to do some checking on that.
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Old 11-15-2010, 5:11 PM
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The fees mentioned so far all seem to be about the same as both of the places where MY car have been impounded.
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Old 11-15-2010, 5:33 PM
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Pretty standard. Any part of a day constitutes a day. So that would be a two day storage fee.
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Old 11-16-2010, 8:35 AM
RedFord150 RedFord150 is offline
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Thank you for all of your responses.
If I was younger and choosing my career, I think I would start a tow company.
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Old 11-19-2010, 9:58 PM
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I work for a Tow company and can answer your question accuratley!

We have multiple PD accounts, CHP, GGPD, APD, Sherrifs....

Each account has its own fees. The fees are set by the department you are representing. So if its a Sherrif tow it will be cheaper than CHP. CHP rates are $150 per hour starting from port to port. Also vehicles storage will apply if it comes to the yard. Daily storage differs also by department. ALL fees should be posted on the outside of the towing establishment where you can see them. We have ours posted.

Inside storage VS outside costs more and with some contracts you can charge more for longer vehicles or if they weigh more.

Labor can be charged in many different ways, Most labor is charged after a certain amount of time has been accumulated on scene. So if a drive line etc has to be dropped you will be charged for the un hook of it and re hook in the form of labor. Thats if the department allows it. Most due. Now if this is in LA county I cannot comment since I dont know what they do. In the OC its this way.

Hope this helps. PS Owning a tow company isnt all its cracked up to be. A lot have gone out of buisness and the wild west days are pretty much gone. I know it sucks to get a car taken but remember the Tow Co has to pay out, Fuel , Driver ,Maintanence etc. I dont own one but see the stuff our owner goes thru is a nightmare. Also we dont impound a car every ten minutes. Usually every couple of hours and weekends DUI time it gets busy. Lots of accidents I am anticipating when the rain hits this weekend.
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Last edited by Napalm Bulldog; 11-20-2010 at 12:20 PM..
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Old 11-20-2010, 3:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abulldog4me View Post
I work for a Tow company and can answer your question accuratley! ...
Thank you for answering honestly. I know a lot of the charges are related to heavy towing. I was a Truck Driver once upon a time and I know the 'Port to Port' per hour is how the big wreckers get paid. I also know that axles or drive shafts have to be removed on the trucks. This is both time consuming and possibly dangerous (on the freeway, at night, etc.). I expect the company to get paid for this.
The car I inquired about was a front wheel drive Saturn. I doubt it took 10 minutes to hook it up. The tow yard was less than 3 miles away.
Anyway, if the charges my friend paid were broken down to an hourly rate, it would probably be cheaper to tow an 18 wheeler.
Anyway, after some research, nothing to do but complain. No money coming back ;-).
We just call it a very expensive lesson learned.
Be safe this weekend. I have already seen tow trucks working 2 bad accidents in the rain today. You are all earning your money this weekend.
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Old 11-20-2010, 5:08 PM
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(I towed for 5 years)

Wanna talk about a racket? In L.A. you are also charged a PARKING TAX on each day of storage. Yes, even though it's not stored on city property.

The port-to-port fees are also for each hour OR FRACTON THEREOF. Hour and 4 minutes = 2hours. Heavy Duties were 2 hour minimum.

The Government makes all the money. The tow company owner has to deal with auctioning off more than half the vehicles impounded because their owners never claim them.
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Old 11-21-2010, 7:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rodeoflyer View Post
(I towed for 5 years)

Wanna talk about a racket? In L.A. you are also charged a PARKING TAX on each day of storage. Yes, even though it's not stored on city property.

The port-to-port fees are also for each hour OR FRACTON THEREOF. Hour and 4 minutes = 2hours. Heavy Duties were 2 hour minimum.

The Government makes all the money. The tow company owner has to deal with auctioning off more than half the vehicles impounded because their owners never claim them.
I high lighted in red the part I am responding too. We now charge in 15 minute incraments. So if its $150 hr you devide it into quarters. I work for a pretty straight up tow company though. Not saying what you stated does not happen. Just adding to it.
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Old 11-21-2010, 7:42 PM
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Cost me about $300 to get my truck back after it was towed from a Long's parking lot in San Diego.
Got a ride with a friend and we pulled into the yard right after the truck... they hadn't even dropped it yet.

It didn't cost me that much in '92 to get my car back from the GGPD impound yard after an 8-hour stay when I went into a DUI checkpoint at 0.12... I think the total for that was something like $250, including towing, storage fee, and the GGPD release processing fee.
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Old 11-21-2010, 9:16 PM
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i was towed in LA. it was there for about 5 hours, 385+85$ tix
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