A North Carolina towing company is again under fire for booting truckers for reportedly parking in restricted areas. The company, Carolina’s Towing claims that like truckers, they are also essential amid the COVID-19 pandemic and will continue to enforce parking violations at any of their locations.
Carolina’s Towing has a long history of booting truckers who are stopping to rest during national crisis’s. In 2018 they came under fire for booting a trucker who pulled over to look for directions. That driver was carrying a load of medical equipment for the Red Cross as part of the Hurricane Florence response. As the driver sat in his truck, a employee of Carolina’s Towing booted two of the tires, demanding $3000 to have the boots removed. After the local news became involved, the towing company refunded the trucking company claiming the incident was a “misunderstanding.”
Reading this company’s on the Better Business Bureau, one would have a hard time believing this was a misunderstanding, but rather a pattern of predatory towing tactics of both truckers and consumers The BBB gives this company a F rating, and mostly for personal vehicles that had been towed from public lots, but the story is the same.
According to FOX46, a local news station in Charlotte, drivers have had it and are turning to the media to tell their stories. One owner-operator found himself booted after parking in a 7-Eleven parking lot to find a bite to eat. According to the report, the driver has been there for just about two hours when a towing company “snuck up” and booted the truck, while he was sitting inside. He was forced to pay $1500 for the boot and a $72 fee because he had to pay with a credit card.
Another trucker told FOX46 he was told he would have to pay $10,000 if his tractor-trailer was towed from the same lot unless he paid $5000 to remove the boot. He says Carolina’s Towing offered him a “deal” to settle for $3000.
Acccording to a statement, Carolina’s Towing says that if a driver provides proof that they are hauling essential goods they would take the “necessary steps to not impede” the driver but also maintains that even if they are hauling essential goods, they are still not permitted to park in a restricted area. The towing company even insists that like truckers, they are considered “essential” and their “services and commitments to customers must continue.”
Carolina’s Towing Full Statement
“We are aware everyone is grappling with COVID-19. Our hearts go out to all because we understand that all have been affected or impacted in some aspect. We also are aware that no one likes to be towed for any infraction at any time let along during theses [sic] times. We have always taken pride in our service and will continue to do so even during this pandemic. Our services have been deemed essential during these times, therefore our services and commitment to our customers must continue. If we come across a truck that contains essential goods we will take the necessary steps not to impede once provided proof. This, however, does not allow any truck or vehicle to be parked where notice posted states otherwise [sic]. Any vehicle that is in violation may be subject to being booted or towed at the owners expense. All rules regulations and prices are posted at the entrance of every property per law. And we abide by every law set by the State and city ordinance. Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or concerns.”