Sunday, June 22, 2008

Ohio Takes A Stand Against Abusive Towing photo

Here is more evidence of a nation waking up to the all-too-common abuses of the towing industry. Spurred by the death of 22-year-old Danielle Knapp--a motorist who was passing by a tow truck and was killed by a 20-pound pulley crashing through her windshield--the Ohio Insurance Institute has started a website... raise awareness about unsafe, abusive, unregulated practices in the Ohio towing industry. The website discusses some legislation under consideration in Ohio, suggests ways people can contact public officials, and includes horror stories taken from complaints filed with the state attorney general's office, including this one:

In February 2006, a young man was in a two-car accident in Columbus, Ohio. The police officer at the scene of the accident called one of the preferred towing companies and the accident victim asked the tow truck driver for an estimate of what it would cost to tow his car to a particular body shop less than a mile away. He was quoted $90-$140.

Once the car was on the truck's hook, however, the driver received a call from the towing office that the tow would cost $300. When the accident victim told the tow truck operator that he didn't want the tow, the tow truck operator would not release the car and said, "The car is hooked now, I can impound it if I want."

Unfortunately, the website doesn't have a lot of content and doesn't appear to get updated very often.

But is Ohio waking up? Oh, yes, eyes are opening in the Buckeye State.

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