Should city towing rules be changed to require more explicit warning signs?
PORTLAND, Ore. – Changes being proposed by city staff would add consumer protections for drivers, from tow companies serving private parking lots.
If the regulations are approved, rules would apply to more parking lots that are currently exempt. They include some city lots, and U.S. Post Offices. Housing authority, condominium and apartment parking lots would also fall under city regulations.
“We’ve put in some stricter and more explicit requirements for the actual warning signs that have to be posted at the lot, and we’ve also put in much more specific requirements for documenting the circumstances prior to towing the vehicle, so the requirement for photographs and how they’re taken is much more explicit,” Regulatory Division Manager for the city’s Revenue Bureau Kathleen Butler said.
Some other new requirements include allowing people to get to important items in their impounded cars, like medicines or pets, whether they can afford to pay their bill and retrieve their vehicle. Also, all impound lots would be required to be located within city limits.
Jesse Copeland of Sergeants Towing said the new requirements are not that big of a deal, because they already have signs out, and allow people to retrieve some items from vehicles.
“Having that sign there just gives them a number to call, plus I don’t think it’s a bad idea to warn people: look, don’t park here you’re going to get towed; common sense isn’t the same to every individual,” said Copeland.
City staff believe the proposal will help make it more clear, where to park and not to park. City Commissioners could vote on the new regulations in early September.