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Tow Truck Regulation in ACT

By 26 February 2014 16

My son was hit by car while riding his motorbike late in January.  Thankfully there is wonderful emergency services and medical treatment available.

One of the real negatives of the process is that there are people willing to take advantage of someone else’s misfortune and inflate their charges because they expect the costs will be covered by insurance.

The price given on the day following the accident, for towing of the 150cc motorbike from Kambah to Kingston, was $568.31.  We had no idea what other expenses we would have to cover in the short term so did not place a high priority on the retrieval of the item.

We were advised to get an invoice before collecting the bike.  In the conversations arranging the pickup we expressed our opinion that the charges were exorbitant (given that we have had a 3 tonne van transported a similar distance for $80)

I requested an invoice be emailed prior to collection.  Magically, for the same items – call out for an accident, distance per kilometre surcharge and after hours call out – the total on the invoice was now $436.39.  Storage charges were added.

As justification for the prices charged, the tow truck operator gave us a copy of the NSW RTA Maximum Charges for towing light vehicles up to 4.5 tonne.   He seemed to have absolutely no qualms about charging the absolute maximum he could find justification for, for a small motorbike.  Thinking about it now, I doubt his truck has a carrying capacity of 4.5 tonnes.

NSW RTA Website also states that a tow truck operator must, among other things, ask the owner where they want the item delivered, provide paperwork and give a written advice as to applicable costs.  This part of the system that he was using to justify the charges certainly was not adhered to.

Does ACT have any similar standards/regulation?

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16 Responses to Tow Truck Regulation in ACT
#1
BelcoMan9:55 am, 26 Feb 14

Charging higher for an insurance company is definitely not something limited to the Tow truck industry.

All (most) medical practitioners and other service providers to the insurance industry will do exactly the same for a couple of reasons:
1 you only want the service not a report on how/why/when the service was provided.
2. You will pay on the spot where they may need to wait 60/90/120 days for payment from an insurance company.

these are just a couple of reasons off the top of my head, i am sure there are plenty of others

#2
bundah10:22 am, 26 Feb 14

Holy shit you got ripped off big-time. Just spoke to a mate from Absolute Towing(free plug) and to attend an accident they charge $242+20% for after hours and $5.62 per kilometre the first 10 kms free+ GST.

Pays to ring around because there are no shortage of rip-off merchants out there.

#3
Roundhead8910:26 am, 26 Feb 14

I don’t know about the ACT but in NSW and Vic bikies are heavily involved in the tow truck industry. Bikie gangs own tow truck companies and many tow truck drivers are members of bikie gangs, involved in steroid trafficking and on the juice themselves.

#4
p110:37 am, 26 Feb 14

Sounds pretty scummy to me, but it is a capitalist economy, why shouldn’t he be able to charge what he wants, and why shouldn’t you be able to ring around for a better deal? Although I am a little surprised the insurance companies would let them get away with it (since they would be paying most of the bills).

You can hire a three ton truck with hydrulic tail gate lift for about 200$…

#5
Stormfront Org11:01 am, 26 Feb 14

This sounds like a rip-off to me (but, by not much).

Here’s what it will cost in Victoria: http://www.vicroads.vic.gov.au/Home/Moreinfoandservices/TowTrucks/News/Newfeesandchargesfor2013-14.htm

Is this what a tow truck operator provided you with? http://www.rms.nsw.gov.au/heavyvehicles/downloads/towtrucks/rms_summary_light_tow_fees_july_2013.pdf

Canberra does not have anything like this, so I wouldn’t be surprised if they use NSW regulations.

IAG discussion paper on this subject: http://www.nrma.com.au/sites/default/files/NRMA-Documents/Submission-to-the-Essential-Services-Commission-Periodic-Review-of-Accident-Towing-and-Storage-Fees.pdf

Glad that your son is okay.

#6
NoImRight12:21 pm, 26 Feb 14

Doesnt he have any mates with trailers who could pick it up? 150cc is not going to be a big bike (scooter?). Should fit in even a transit van or similar.

#7
NoImRight12:22 pm, 26 Feb 14

Roundhead89 said :

I don’t know about the ACT but in NSW and Vic bikies are heavily involved in the tow truck industry. Bikie gangs own tow truck companies and many tow truck drivers are members of bikie gangs, involved in steroid trafficking and on the juice themselves.

I hear they also deal in black market whippets. Any other fact bombs you want to share?

#8
gazket3:44 pm, 26 Feb 14

Roundhead89 said :

I don’t know about the ACT but in NSW and Vic bikies are heavily involved in the tow truck industry. Bikie gangs own tow truck companies and many tow truck drivers are members of bikie gangs, involved in steroid trafficking and on the juice themselves.

1% Bikers have been banned from owning / driving tow trucks for quite some time now.

#9
gazket3:49 pm, 26 Feb 14

NoImRight said :

Doesnt he have any mates with trailers who could pick it up? 150cc is not going to be a big bike (scooter?). Should fit in even a transit van or similar.

If got carted off in an ambulance I doubt he had the foresight to refuse a tow truck and ring a friend to pick the bike up.

a crashed car always costs more than if you car is broken down or just needs moving by flatbed truck

#10
NoImRight9:07 am, 27 Feb 14

gazket said :

NoImRight said :

Doesnt he have any mates with trailers who could pick it up? 150cc is not going to be a big bike (scooter?). Should fit in even a transit van or similar.

If got carted off in an ambulance I doubt he had the foresight to refuse a tow truck and ring a friend to pick the bike up.

a crashed car always costs more than if you car is broken down or just needs moving by flatbed truck

Its fun trying to be a smart arse on the internet isnt it? Read the OP. We arent talking about on the day or time of the accident. We arent even talking about the rider arranging it. This seems to be some time afterwards. My suggestion was based on what happened when Ive had falls and what Ive done for others when they have. First question is “are you OK?’ second question is” Wheres the bike do you need a hand with it?” I guess decades of actually doing this isnt as useful or clever as owning a keyboard though.

Your apology is accepted.

#11
gizmo19:12 am, 27 Feb 14

Roundhead89 – Are you serious? Your sort of narrow minded opinions are best suited to QLD, best you look at moving north where your sort of facist views are more acceptable. I picture you as a Prius driver with less imagination or tolerance than a member of the KKK

Jesus, you idiots see big bad bikers as a problem, no mention of the religious bigotry, intolerance and abuse your sort tend to propagate.

Once all bike riders have been locked up, people with your level of intolerance will find themselves next in line to be victimised and it will be interesting to see how loud you bleat

#12
bundah9:52 am, 27 Feb 14
#13
marcothepolopony10:53 am, 27 Feb 14

Roundhead89 said :

I don’t know about the ACT but in NSW and Vic bikies are heavily involved in the tow truck industry. Bikie gangs own tow truck companies and many tow truck drivers are members of bikie gangs, involved in steroid trafficking and on the juice themselves.

This is such a true statement. I was almost killed on the Burley Griffin Way by an extremely hyped up tow truck driver and his rig, complete with tractor on board, I will never forget this experience the longest day I live.
The local member was informed and I have noticed more police on that road of late. Onya Katrina.

#14
NoImRight11:29 am, 27 Feb 14

marcothepolopony said :

Roundhead89 said :

I don’t know about the ACT but in NSW and Vic bikies are heavily involved in the tow truck industry. Bikie gangs own tow truck companies and many tow truck drivers are members of bikie gangs, involved in steroid trafficking and on the juice themselves.

This is such a true statement. I was almost killed on the Burley Griffin Way by an extremely hyped up tow truck driver and his rig, complete with tractor on board, I will never forget this experience the longest day I live.
The local member was informed and I have noticed more police on that road of late. Onya Katrina.

Yes your experience with one driver once definately proves that statement true. Did he have his bike in the truck with him? Or some sort of membership card he showed you?

#15
Antagonist1:59 pm, 27 Feb 14

marcothepolopony said :

Roundhead89 said :

I don’t know about the ACT but in NSW and Vic bikies are heavily involved in the tow truck industry. Bikie gangs own tow truck companies and many tow truck drivers are members of bikie gangs, involved in steroid trafficking and on the juice themselves.

This is such a true statement. I was almost killed on the Burley Griffin Way by an extremely hyped up tow truck driver and his rig, complete with tractor on board, I will never forget this experience the longest day I live.
The local member was informed and I have noticed more police on that road of late. Onya Katrina.

He had a tractor on board? That is a sure sign they are bikers.

I wonder what it would be like if bikers infiltrated the local hair-removal salons? If you thought hairy genitals were scary, you aint seen nothing yet!

#16
p12:24 pm, 27 Feb 14

NoImRight said :

I hear they also deal in black market whippets. Any other fact bombs you want to share?

I’ve heard bad things about black market whippets. Most of them are cheap knock-offs from china, sorme are anorexic labradors.

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