MANCHESTER, NH – With the revised parking ban in place since Feb. 20 and more snow coming in the weekend forecast – which could bring yet another Snow Emergency parking ban – we thought it was a good time to answer some of the questions that have been floating around out there about the city’s process for towing, ticketing and charging residents who violate parking bans.
We talked with Manchester Assistant Chief of Police Nick Willard, who was kind enough to answer all our questions. If you have other questions, send them in and I’ll add them to the mix, and get you an answer: firstname.lastname@example.org
1. How many cars have been towed so far this season?
There have been 10 Snow Emergencies declared by Department of Public Works this winter, all in 2015: January 24, 26, 27 and 30; Feb. 2, 5, 8, 9, 14 and 15.
Total vehicles towed: 982 (The high during one night: 155 vehicles; the low: 49 vehicles.)[Editor’s note: That’s $108,020 paid by residents for towing, not including tickets for Snow Emergency violations. See #5.].
2. Why is it cash only?
This is a temporary operation usually lasting only 24 hours. The impound shed at the Derryfield Park lot is not structurally updated. They do not have access to computer equipment and/or modern technology because that would require additional wiring, etc., not to mention the structure itself can not be safely secured
and is not equipped with an alarm.
3. What is the breakdown of the $110 – all to the tow company? Does the city get a cut?
Tow company’s portion is $85 and the city’s portion is $25, per the MPD contract.
4. Is there a summons or ticket for violating parking rules, or is that rolled into the $110?
No ticket is issued if the vehicle is towed. There is a “drop” policy in which, at the officer’s discretion, a vehicle can be dropped in lieu of being towed if the registered owner shows up and the vehicle is in the initial stage of being prepped for towing. The owner has limited time to produce $25 to prevent the tow. Otherwise, the vehicle is taken to the tow yard. An officer can choose to issue a ticket if the vehicle is dropped and the $25 is paid. The $25 is collected by the tow driver and the owner is issued a receipt for payment. This policy is really based on the officer’s discretion and how much work the tow driver has invested in prepping the vehicle to be towed. The vehicle does necessarily have to be “off” the ground to be considered a “drop.”
5. How many tickets have been issued?
Snow Emergency Tickets issued: 458 (458 x $75 = $34,350.) (Highest number of tickets issued in one night: 135 tickets; Lowest number of tickets issued in one night: 5 tickets.)
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