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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Did anyone see the LA Times today? On the California Page Cover a HUGE MINI picture with the owner crying as her car was going to be towed because of some new ticket law. :(

A MINI2 Member? I'll post the pic later this afternoon.
 

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Ok, I don't live in LA. However, every time I've been to California, there's insane traffic.

How can you on one hand complain about the insane traffic, yet on the other hand grumble that they're doing something about people violating rules that they've posted, that presumably cause traffic backups. I don't know the exact scenario, but there's plenty of 2 lane each direction roads around Cleveland, and there's always plenty of near accidents because someone doesn't bother to read the signs that say no parking during 7-9am or 4-6pm, and people have to swerve out of the right lane when they see a car they're not expecting.

Or is that not the reason they're towing cars?

MINI driver or not, I don't see how you have a huge claim that you shouldn't be subject to laws that make reasonable sense.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
stryder said:
Ok, I don't live in LA. However, every time I've been to California, there's insane traffic.
stryder said:
How can you on one hand complain about the insane traffic, yet on the other hand grumble that they're doing something about people violating rules that they've posted, that presumably cause traffic backups. I don't know the exact scenario, but there's plenty of 2 lane each direction roads around Cleveland, and there's always plenty of near accidents because someone doesn't bother to read the signs that say no parking during 7-9am or 4-6pm, and people have to swerve out of the right lane when they see a car they're not expecting.



Or is that not the reason they're towing cars?



MINI driver or not, I don't see how you have a huge claim that you shouldn't be subject to laws that make reasonable sense.




WHO SAID I WAS COMPLAINING????? YOU MISS READ MY POST! I was just saying its ironic that the car that was being towed happened to be a MINI! How lucky can you get to have a MINI on the front page of a newspaper? I didnt care what the subject was I just wanted to see if anyone else saw the MINI... I dont give a rats who gets towed... people need to learn how to drive and NOT block traffic. I think its a good thing that they are towing people to teach them a lesson.



Oh and if you thought the sad face was for the stupid traffic law it wasnt... it was for MINI and TOW those two words dont go together very well.



Heres the article.



http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-tow6nov06,1,966941.story

stryder said:
MINI driver or not, I don't see how you have a huge claim that you shouldn't be subject to laws that make reasonable sense.
WHERE DID I HAVE A HUGE CLAIM?????
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
CALIFORNIA

L.A. to Speed Up Rush-Hour Tows

Starting Monday, trucks will be poised near some of the city's busiest streets to impound cars en masse -- and send a message.

By Hector Becerra, Times Staff Writer



Sgt. August Johnson and his parking-enforcement team patrol Ventura Boulevard, on the lookout for that bane of the rush-hour commute: parked cars blocking traffic.

A 16-year veteran of the parking game, he knows scofflaws can often be found near the dry cleaner and in front of the automated teller machine. Some forget to read the parking sign; others think they can quickly run an errand without getting caught.




He's seen all the tricks.

"We have people who pull up, pop their hazard lights on, run inside and come back out," Johnson said. "These hazard lights are basically calling to us as we drive past, 'Here I am, here I am, here I am!' "

There are more than 1,300 miles of tow-away zones in Los Angeles, designed to clear traffic lanes of parked cars so traffic can flow more smoothly, especially during rush hour. But on an average day, only about 60 parked cars are towed. About 7% of cars that received parking citations in tow zones were actually towed away in the last fiscal year, which ended June 30.

But the city is about to change that.

Beginning Monday, some of the city's busiest streets will have tow trucks lined up at staging areas ready to nab cars as soon as the rush-hour restrictions start. Extra parking officers will be deployed during rush hour in a campaign to tow violators en masse — and in the process send a message.

"For those people not following the law, it's going to be a very dramatic shift," said Jimmy Price, chief of parking enforcement for the city's transportation department. "For those who abide by the law, I think they'll find traveling in L.A. city streets will be quicker and easier."

Until now, parking enforcement officers had the discretion to decide whether or not to call a tow truck when they cited a vehicle in a tow-away zone. Often, they decide against it, in part because most violators are usually parked for only a few minutes — it takes longer to get a tow truck at the scene. If the officer does call a truck, he must wait for it to arrive — preventing him from ticketing more cars.

The new directive, involving 35 major streets, requires officers to call a tow truck for every vehicle they ticket. As many as 60 officers will be assigned to this detail, about double the number who usually monitor the rush hour tow-away zones. The crackdown will eventually be expanded onto arterial streets.

The armada of tow trucks and parking officers is designed to make the process more efficient. By early next year, the city is also expected to contract with a software company to devise ways to cut the time it takes to complete impound paperwork, Price said.

Problem streets include Wilshire, Pico and Olympic boulevards as well as Figueroa Street and portions of Pacific Coast Highway. Most of the targeted streets, often used as alternatives to freeways, are in West L.A., Hollywood and the San Fernando Valley.





Along traffic Officer Daryl Salangron's route in the San Fernando Valley, scofflaws have already had a glimpse of the future. Along Ventura Boulevard, near the San Diego Freeway, the parking enforcement agency launched a pilot program to crack down. The result: more than 50% of the cars cited here are also towed.

Just after 3 p.m. Wednesday, trucks from Howard Sommers Towing Inc. were already lined up near Ventura Boulevard and Woodley Avenue.

A truck had just hauled a car yards away and was about to hook Ardyce Cooper's car when she hurried up to Salangron and yelled "Wait a minute, wait a minute!"

Cooper, 76, of Woodland Hills, said she had been in a medical office with her husband Terry, 77, who had recently had shoulder surgery. He told her she'd better check on the car.

"I come out here, and there's this big great truck here ready to pull me away," Cooper said, holding her $65 parking ticket.

She said she had not seen the sign because her view had been obstructed by a tree.

"Sit down and look from here. That tree covers it up," Cooper said. "I looked to make sure it was not [a red zone], I got out and put money in the meter, and I come out here and see this guy giving me a ticket."

Her car was not towed because it had not been hooked yet.

Later, Neil Algueza, 30, of Glendale almost had his car towed.

The computer service technician had parked his car and put in enough quarters in a meter for an hour. By the time he came out shortly after 4 p.m., he had a ticket and a truck was preparing to tow his VW Jetta.

"It's part my mistake. I didn't see the sign," Algueza said. Then, in a refrain parking officers say they commonly hear, he added: "They're supposed to put bigger signs. It's part my fault. But it's confusing because I never saw the sign. It's very small."

Salangron said many parking violators along Ventura Boulevard simply make a common mistake.

"In the majority of cases I come upon, they just didn't read the signs," said Salangron, a 17-year veteran. "They just want to park, put money in the meters and go."

But other motorists, especially on Pico Boulevard or Alvarado Street, are "short-duration violators" who are well aware they are breaking the law and betting they won't get a ticket, let alone get towed, Price said.

Some merchants believe tow-away zones hurt business, but would prefer that the city either enforce the law, or just get rid of it, said Jay Handal, president of the West Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce.

If the city follows through and tows away illegally parked vehicles, business owners at least hope that shoppers will arrive at their stores sooner because of swifter traffic, Handal said.

"Either tow them or let them park," he added. "But don't disguise your revenue-generating source by calling it a movement to move traffic because you're not moving traffic if you don't tow."
 

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Well actually, Paul and Spy's faces made more of a claim that this was a bad thing - and it was directed at them, but I was probably overreacting a bit myself. Good we agree about enforcing things :)

I do worry about towing though... Its pretty easy to damage something with a careless towtruck. And I guess I never thought about it, but what do they do if you parked and have the parking brake on? Just drag your car along with the front wheels in the air + the back skidding against the brake? I doubt they're going to take the time to put on tow dollies.

Maybe that's the best reason yet to drive a manual (or use the brake on an automatic), the police or tow truck will see the brake is on, and be less inclined to tow the car for fear of damaging it.
 

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stryder said:
Well actually, Paul and Spy's faces made more of a claim that this was a bad thing - and it was directed at them, but I was probably overreacting a bit myself. Good we agree about enforcing things :)

I do worry about towing though... Its pretty easy to damage something with a careless towtruck. And I guess I never thought about it, but what do they do if you parked and have the parking brake on? Just drag your car along with the front wheels in the air + the back skidding against the brake? I doubt they're going to take the time to put on tow dollies.

Maybe that's the best reason yet to drive a manual (or use the brake on an automatic), the police or tow truck will see the brake is on, and be less inclined to tow the car for fear of damaging it.
Actually, they very specifically do not care (especially in L.A.). If they have to smash the window to release the brake and straighten the wheels, they'll do it. Alternatively, they'll hook the car, drag it a distance (tires screeching away) to some spot where they can either put dollies on it or wait for a flatbed to drag it onto. If they (the towing company) has a legal directive to tow the vehicle (ie: police ordered), then they are protected from any claims you might bring. This very thing happened to my sister when her car broke down and was towed for being "illegally parked" (nevermind that it was broken down with a note on it that she had gone to call for a tow truck). They broke out her window and towed the car. The system was so hosed that when she called the police to report the car stolen, they had no idea that they had actually ordered the car towed and instead took a complete report and started looking for the car! Two weeks later the towing lot called my sister saying that this was her last chance to buy the car out of impound or they were going to sell it at auction. Apparently she was supposed to have been notified by the police weeks before that the car was towed. When she went down to get the car, the fees were insane; two weeks of storage, plus the impound fee came to $1200 (and this is 1986 dollars mind you!). On top of that, it had rained once during that two weeks (the yearly storm for L.A.) and the interior of the car was ruined, helped along by the fact that some fool at the tow yard had used the conveniently open window to chuck a greasy axle into. After all this, when she called an attorney for advice, his first question was "did the police have the car towed?" which he followed with "Well, there's nothing you can do then, sorry." So I guess now they're speeding up the whole process of hijacking and losing your car for weeks on end. Nice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Wow thats crazy!! I mean the car was broken down!! what can you do? Police sometimes... Next time just sit in the car till the cops come and call a tow truck for you.
 

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C'mon now police! That's just harsh! She should have been awarded, what with her nice matching pink outfit, BUNNY SLIPPERS, and EXCELLENT choice in MINI color, I would have congratulated her instead!!! :p :D

:blblack: :blblack: :blblack: :cool:
 

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As I recall, the Mini is supposed to be flatbedded if towed. The pic shows a front wheel tow. Won't that cause damage to the vehicle? If so, I truly understand the crying.

You think LA is bad. I lived in SF for 3 years and they towed for street cleaning - whether the cleaner showed up or not!!!!

Once I watched a guy park in a legal parking space and go into a restaurant. The city road crew came by and painted the curb next to his car red. Ten minutes later, a cop came by and ticketed the car. When the driver came out of the restaurant, a tow truck was pulling up to tow him. All this occurred in a little over an hour at the intersection of Columbus, Grant and Montgomery. Hey - with tighter city budgets ya gotta think of new ways to boost revenue :D
 

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stryder said:
Well actually, Paul and Spy's faces made more of a claim that this was a bad thing - and it was directed at them, but I was probably overreacting a bit myself. Good we agree about enforcing things :)

I do worry about towing though... Its pretty easy to damage something with a careless towtruck. And I guess I never thought about it, but what do they do if you parked and have the parking brake on? Just drag your car along with the front wheels in the air + the back skidding against the brake? I doubt they're going to take the time to put on tow dollies.

Maybe that's the best reason yet to drive a manual (or use the brake on an automatic), the police or tow truck will see the brake is on, and be less inclined to tow the car for fear of damaging it.
Once when I was in Providence, RI during a snow storm, the local "authorities" made a snap decision that due to the snow, no one would be allowed to park on any streets! Of course, the poor souls that weren't listening to the local radio or watching local TV, didn't hear of this. Thus, the tow companies made a killing. As I was trying to talk a tow guy from taking my car, I saw a BMW 3 series being dragged, rear wheels not turning, at a good clip down the street. I would speculate they dragged that thing all the way to their lot. Although I couldn't talk the tow guy from taking my car, at least I was there to unlock it and it was a flatbed. Got my car the next day....not too bad $85 to get it back.

A word of advice....never be the first car in a line of parked cars if it is a tow zone, or a zone that may become one. That way, you might get a little more time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Andromcs said:
A word of advice....never be the first car in a line of parked cars if it is a tow zone, or a zone that may become one. That way, you might get a little more time.
whats considered first? the front of the back? or BOTH? :eek:
 
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