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Go Back   REVscene Automotive Forum > Automotive Chat > Police Forum

Police Forum Police Head Mod: Skidmark
Questions & info about the Motor Vehicle Act. Mature discussion only.

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Old 12-10-2011, 04:30 PM   #1
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Got towed because the parking meter expired

Hey guys, i just got towed because the parking meter expired. This was on Broadway, Vancouver.

Are they allowed to tow you when the meter expires? This zone was totally legal for parking.


I've never been towed because the parking meter has expired.



This seems messed up to me. The towing company is making more money off me than the city is! They could have just ticketed me and still made the same money.
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Old 12-10-2011, 04:45 PM   #2
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how long was the car there after the meter expired?
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Old 12-10-2011, 04:46 PM   #3
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I don't see why they CAN'T tow you. I mean you were afterall parked illegaly.

I know, it sucks. Iv been towed for that same reason too.
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Old 12-10-2011, 05:06 PM   #4
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wow seems pretty harsh
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Old 12-10-2011, 05:09 PM   #5
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maybe Rush hour 3pm-6pm?
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Old 12-10-2011, 05:17 PM   #6
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Would be pretty freaken stupid if they towed you because meter expired. That's why we have meter maids. +1 to the 3-6pm restriction Or private parking lot.
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Old 12-10-2011, 05:18 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Raid3n View Post
how long was the car there after the meter expired?
5 minutes

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Originally Posted by racerman88 View Post
maybe Rush hour 3pm-6pm?
There were no time limitations on the parking spot, plus its Saturday.


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Originally Posted by vafanculo View Post
I don't see why they CAN'T tow you. I mean you were afterall parked illegaly.

I know, it sucks. Iv been towed for that same reason too.
I'm somehow relieved that others have been towed for the same reason. :/


I wonder how they decide if you should be towed or not. Sounds good for corruption. The parking maid could easily take money from the towing company to mark a car to be impounded.
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Old 12-10-2011, 05:58 PM   #8
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They will only tow you if you have any outstanding tickets. If you didn't have any tickets, they can give you one then tow you right after.
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Old 12-10-2011, 06:10 PM   #9
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Interesting. Do you have a source for that?

Seems odd as well, how does towing my car deal with outstanding tickets? The towing company doesn't collect.
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Old 12-10-2011, 06:13 PM   #10
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Interesting. Do you have a source for that?

Seems odd as well, how does towing my car deal with outstanding tickets? The towing company doesn't collect.
I think the meter maids could have called in the tow if you have outstanding tix. Not completely sure
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Old 12-10-2011, 06:16 PM   #11
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Interesting. Do you have a source for that?

Seems odd as well, how does towing my car deal with outstanding tickets? The towing company doesn't collect.
Assuming they gave you a ticket and towed you right after, the ticket will be with the people at the counter of the city's impound lot where your car is located.
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Old 12-10-2011, 06:18 PM   #12
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Oh i see what you mean. I thought you meant outstanding tickets from the past.

Yes I had a ticket from today.
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Old 12-10-2011, 06:49 PM   #13
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Attendant is probably a dick. They tow you 5 min after it expires? That's retarded.
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Old 12-10-2011, 10:59 PM   #14
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That's retarded.
Sounds more like legalized theft to me.
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Old 12-11-2011, 12:43 AM   #15
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Sounds more like legalized theft to me.
If they didn't give it back, yes.

A friend of mine recently got towed 'cause she got plastered at her boyfriend's and forgot about the early morning parking restriction (Broadway too, I think). It was about $150 for the ticket and tow and storage. I was quite surprised at how little that is, given that ordinarily when a car gets towed away you get charged quite a hefty amount.
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Old 12-11-2011, 02:06 PM   #16
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If you owe the city money, they are serious...
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Old 12-12-2011, 06:27 AM   #17
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I thought the "test" for authorizing a tow was that your vehicle either had to be a "safety hazard" or pressing/immediate "inconvenience" to other motorists.

I wonder how well one could argue that a 5 minute parking overage doesn't fall under either of those categories? If there was other available meters around, and you had some way to prove this, you may just have a reasonable arguement.

I know at certain times during the day on Broadway, (I think 3PM) the street parking becomes a bus lane. I used to watch a parade of Busters trucks follow the bylaw officer as he did the rounds along Broadway corridor from Granville to Burrard. Fished at least 1-2 each block every day.
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Old 12-12-2011, 10:05 AM   #18
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By-law Fines and Towing Fees: Parking Operations and Enforcement

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Any vehicle that is in violation of any parking By-law may be impounded and will be towed when they are a safety hazard or an inconvenience to other motorists or pedestrians.
Why you would be towed when it's just a parking meter violation, I have no idea... but something isn't right there.
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Old 12-12-2011, 11:29 AM   #19
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I thought the "test" for authorizing a tow was that your vehicle either had to be a "safety hazard" or pressing/immediate "inconvenience" to other motorists.

I wonder how well one could argue that a 5 minute parking overage doesn't fall under either of those categories? If there was other available meters around, and you had some way to prove this, you may just have a reasonable arguement.
Incovenience is stopping in butt fuck no where blocking traffic lane. I was 5 min late to plug the meters and I got towed... I would be pretty fucking pissed. Give me a ticket and I'll pay it but tow me? That's retarded. Did you ever ask yourself why they leave tickets on the windshield and not call in the tow trucks?

Not paying in a designated parking spot is different from parking/stopping in a no parking/stopping zones/hours. Two different violations.
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Old 12-12-2011, 03:35 PM   #20
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Incovenience is stopping in butt no where blocking traffic lane. I was 5 min late to plug the meters and I got towed... I would be pretty pissed.

Not paying in a designated parking spot is different from parking/stopping in a no parking/stopping zones/hours. Two different violations.
I would tend to agree - Potentially they could stretch inconvenience to meaning "he was taking up valuable parking space during the busiest part of the day in an overly crowded street". But then again, it was a weekend, and he never said the time.


Honestly, if I was the OP, I would dispute the ticket AND be requesting a refund of towing charges, even if simply to get clarity about how the this fits the bill of safety hazard or inconvenience.

OP would need some way to show he was only gone for a short while though after the meter expired. How long after you were issued the ticket did you contact the towing company? That would probably be one of the few ways you could prove that.
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Old 12-12-2011, 04:05 PM   #21
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Attendant is probably a dick. They tow you 5 min after it expires? That's retarded.
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I've walked back to my car to top up the meter to find a meter maid at the meter. Writing me a ticket. I had it timed on my cell phone, so at the very most it would've been at 0 for 30 seconds. Not to mention, it was still blinking, and my understanding is that it blinks 0 as a kind of grace period.
I argued, and he said, well you didn't make it back in time anyways, the meter says 0.
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Old 12-12-2011, 06:39 PM   #22
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^ya, i believe for 3 minutes after it expires it blinks 0:00, and then after that it blinks 00:00 and you're SOL.
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Old 12-12-2011, 08:02 PM   #23
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Old 12-12-2011, 09:19 PM   #24
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A friend has an old motorhome that he is scrapping. I would like to take this and park it downtown see how long before it gets towed. It's 25 foot long and prob weighs about about 16,000lbs, above and beyond what most tow trucks can legally pull. And if they do, take pics and forward it to CVSE and Transport Canada who have to investigate a complaint of MVA and TC regulation violations
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Old 12-13-2011, 07:16 PM   #25
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Just serve a notice on the towing company that you are suing them in small claims court for the cost of towing and miscellaneous expenses. That is the only way for these neanderthals to learn anything. That could have been someone disabled or some senior citizen's car. If you were only 5 mins late and in a parking zone, you deserve a ticket, you don't deserve to get towed. It doesn't look like the law supports you getting towed either.
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