Know Your Rights When Your Car Gets Towed by the MMDA
Getting your car towed is a hassle, but getting it impounded and retrieving it back can be a nightmare. Make sure you know what you can do (and what the government can do) when this situation happens to you.
A car is "attended" if you are there when your car gets towed, or you would appear at any time before the actual clamping to the tow truck pulling your car away. You are also willing to move out the illegally parked vehicle without delay.
1. If your car gets towed due to an accident, you have the right to say no if MMDA's Road Emergency tow truck is asking for payment.
MMDA Road Emergency tow trucks are only allowed to tow cars that are involved in accidents. They are free of charge.
2. You have the right to ask for the proper identification of a towing truck, and refuse their services in case they can't provide the proper ID cards and their company's prescribed uniforms.
3. You have the right to ask for a ticket issued by a traffic constable only.
MMDA only allows a traffic constable (or deputized HPG) to issue a Traffic Violation Receipt (TVR).
4. You have the right not to allow a towing crew to board your car when you are present.
If they keep on insisting, then you have the right to report this violation to the MMDA.
5. You have the right to say no to a towing truck if it’s not included in the list of MMDA accredited towing companies.
6. You have the right to ask for a Technical Inspection Report that indicates the following:
- Name of the owner
- Vehicle’s plate number
- Type and color
- Description of the vehicle’s condition
7. You have the right to file a case against a towing truck crew if damages or losses occur while your vehicle is being towed.
Your car is "unattended", when you're not there when your vehicle is being towed away.
8. You have the right to undergo the proper towing and impounding process as required by the MMDA:
1.) If the vehicle is unattended, the tow truck driver shall blow the truck's horn five (5) times to alert the owner. 2.) The tow truck driver will honk another five (5) times after a minute passes. If you don't respond, then your vehicle will be towed. 3.) A notice shall be left/entrusted to any traffic officer on duty at the site, or to any responsible person who can give the notice to you. 4.) The impounding area where your vehicle shall be towed and impounded should likewise be indicated.
9. You have the right to report violations and complaints to report to MMDA's Facebook or Twitter page. You can also call hotline 136 for urgent matters.
The Government's "Rights"
Now that you know your rights, here's what the government can charge against you:
1. The government has the right to tow your car if you park it on the following areas:
1.) All national roads in Metro Manila
2.) Primary and secondary roads of cities and municipalities in Metro Manila that are:
- Within six meters of any intersection or curved lane
- Within four meters of driveways or entrances to any fire station, hospital, clinic and other similar establishment;
- Within four meters of fire hydrants
- On the roadside of any legally parked vehicle
- On pedestrian crosswalks
- In front of any authorized driveway
- On the sidewalks, paths and alleys not intended for parking
- At the foot or near bridges
- At any place where official signs have been erected prohibiting parking and/or declared "NO PARKING ZONE" by the MMDA such as the Mabuhay Lanes
- Other areas duly declared as “NO PARKING ZONE” provided by law or ordinances
2. The government has the right to place your towed car in the following locations:
- ULTRA Impounding Area along Julia Vargas Ave. Ortigas, Pasig City
- Tumana, Marikina City
3. The government has the right to give you a TVR if your car is "stalled."
"Stalled" means vehicles that are not moving due to flat tires, empty fuel tank, or engine trouble.
- If your car has a flat tire, you must immediately move it to the emergency lane on its own; otherwise it will be towed.
- If your car is stalled due to an empty fuel tank, it will be towed to the nearest gasoline station. However, a towing fee will be paid to the tow truck according to the number of kilometers your car gets towed (place of origin) up to the gasoline station.
4. The government has the right to ask you to pay a fee for your violations.
How much is the violation and towing fee?
1.) If you illegally park your motor vehicle on any public road, street or thoroughfare in Metro Manila you will pay a standard fine of PHP200-500.
2.) In addition, a standard towing fee shall be collected by both government and private companies with the following rates:
- Light vehicles (weighing less than 4,500 kgs) – PHP1500 for the first four km
- Medium vehicles (weighing between 4501 kg and 7500 kg) – PHP2500 for the first four km
- Heavy vehicles (weighing 7501 kg and above) PHP4500 for the first four km
- In any case, you will also be charged PHP200 per kilometer on top of the base fee measured from the place your car was towed all straight to the impounding area.