Company accused of illegally towing vehicles offers refunds as state investigates

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by khou.com staff

khou.com

Posted on January 21, 2011 at 6:44 PM

Updated Tuesday, Jan 25 at 10:42 AM

HOUSTON – A Houston towing company is under state investigation after 11 News reported allegations that it illegally towed cars from a Montrose parking lot.

The victims say Fast Tow Company was towing cars even though no legal signs were posted that prohibited parking. Police were called to the scene and told the company to stop towing due to a city ordinance and state law that requires standardized signs be posted.

Section 2308 of the Texas Occupational Code says signs must be on every entrance to the parking area.

"Facing and conspicuously visible to the driver of a vehicle that enters the facility; no lower than five feet and no higher than eight feet above ground level," the law reads.

The Department of Licensing and Regulation opened the investigation and is urging all car owners who were towed to contact its office. Part of the department's investigation is to determine exactly what signs may have been up at the time.

Fast Tow admitted the most important one was missing.

"The one sign required by statute was gone. There were other signs but that one was gone therefore they should not have been towed. Plain and simple," said Janette Rash, the owner of Fast Tow.

Rash said her employees ignored several company rules that day.

"You see the wheels fall off and you know you have to regroup and clean house so that is what you have to do," she said. "For me, as a company, the whole situation should never have happened."

Rash said she has made attempts to remedy the situation with the drivers who were towed.

"Once I saw your video and interviewed all of my employees I made a decision and went back and mailed their checks to them," she said.

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