Detroit Company In Hot Water After Towing Scam and Code Violations

November 26, 2018

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there are over 50,000 accidents every year related to towing. Though these towing incidents occur all the time on U.S. roads, in Michigan, it’s a towing company that’s in hot water.

According to Detroit Metro Times, Breakthrough Towing has been fined by Detroit for as many as 10 code and compliance violations.

Breakthrough Towing has come under fire from community officials and city residents for being involved in an alleged scam in where drivers are forced to pay hundreds of dollars to recover their vehicles after they are towed away. Many of these vehicles weren’t even parked illegally in the various lots where they were found.

Though the company’s reputation has taken a significant hit due to these aggressive towing practices (at least currently), Detroit is instead fining them for code and compliance violations pertaining to where Breakthrough Towing is storing its towed vehicles.

“What they’re doing to people that own cars is ridiculous and should not be happening,” said Dave Bell, director of Detroit’s Buildings, Safety, Engineering and Environmental Department. “But unfortunately I can’t enforce that. What I can enforce is the property maintenance code.”

Breakthrough Towing charges more than $400 to drivers in order to retrieve their vehicles that were unjustly towed away.

Additionally, Breakthrough Towing is being sued by lawyers representing vehicle owners who claim the company didn’t just illegally tow their vehicles, but broke into them, as well.

“In Michigan, if you come out and you’re in the process of towing your car and they haven’t taken it off the premises yet, they are required to give you back your vehicle,” said Kathleen Garbacz, a class action lawyer.

According to Fox 2 Detroit, the Better Business Bureau is investigating Breakthrough Towing and put out a city-wide alert.

“I think they’re doing a disservice to the folks in metro Detroit and I think they should change their business practices,” added Bell.

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