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Tow truck industry review commences

28 May, 2014

The Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) is calling for submissions from tow truck operators and drivers, motorists, heavy vehicle operators and other stakeholders on ways to improve the regulations and fees in the towing industry in NSW.

The NSW tow truck industry is regulated with minimum requirements that tow truck operators and drivers must meet, and maximum fees and charging arrangements set for certain types of towing.  Currently in NSW, maximum fees for towing services at accident scenes, where drivers are likely to be distressed and traffic may be impacted, are regulated while fees for towing purposes other than accidents are unregulated and set by the market.

An Issues Paper released for the Review of Maximum Towing Fees (Light and Heavy Vehicles) asks stakeholders for their views about whether the current fee structure and charging arrangements are appropriate.

Views are also being sought about the current regulatory framework and what changes, if any, could be made to provide savings to business and the community by reducing red tape.

IPART Chairman, Dr Peter Boxall, said the objective of the review is to recommend ways to ensure the industry is operating as efficiently as possible to reduce costs, while ensuring consumers are provided with adequate protection.

Improve quality, reliability and safety

"This review will consider what is needed to maintain and improve the quality, reliability and safety standards of the tow truck industry, alongside what measures need to be put in place to ensure the viability and sustainability of tow truck operators, particularly in remote areas of NSW," Dr Boxall said.

"We are also seeking stakeholder views about different charging schedules and arrangements for light and heavy vehicles and the towing services provided by the industry including accident towing, subsequent towing and storage fees."

Dr Boxall said IPART will be consulting directly with tow truck industry and community representatives during the review.

IPART is seeking submissions to the Issues Paper before 27 June 2014.  These submissions will be considered in the preparation of a draft report to be released prior to a public roundtable to be held in October, before a final report is submitted to the NSW government in December.

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