Toronto, Ontario -- October 4, 2017 -- Toronto’s city council is considering new rules for tow truck operators. Among the proposed changes is a fixed rate for towing services. Over the past five years, Toronto has received an average of 150 complaints per year against tow truck drivers, for a rough total of 750 complaints.
City staff recommend a fixed towing rate of $250, with a possible addition of $100 dollars, in cases where the vehicle needs to be winched into position before towing. The towing itself would not carry additional acharges unless a vehicle is towed outside city limits, in which case operators can start charging per kilometre. These rules would also see that both the tow truck operator and driver must agree to a price prior to the tow taking place.
Coun. Jon Burnside, who sits on Toronto's licensing and standards committee, commented on the benefits of implementing the above rules. As quoted by the CBC, Burnside said, “It cuts down on the arguments, it cuts down on the need for enforcement and I think it’s a better place for everyone. I think $250 for a tow in the city of Toronto is a fair rate.”
Some area towers, including Aris Marinos, disagree. Marinos argues that Toronto should align its rates with Halton’s—$360 for the hook up with an additional $4 per kilometre. As well, he thinks tow truck operators should have the option to charge $125 for each hour they spend waiting at a collision reporting centre, and jobs like righting overturned vehicles and winching should call for additional fees. He proposes $350 for the former and $100 for the latter.
According to Marinos, the city should also reconsider their plans of implementing a minimum weight for towing vehicles, as this could take smaller trucks off the road. In report from the CBC, Marinos said, “Not only do congested streets often require smaller trucks, but they are needed for removal from many, if not most, underground garages.