The services of a tow truck are invaluable, especially if your vehicle has been disabled. If your vehicle happens to break down on the side of a road and requires safe transportation from point A to B, a Tampa towing company is your best bet. However, very few people think about what happens if the tow truck damages their vehicle. That is why we are here to discuss towing company liability.
By hiring a reputable tow truck company in Tampa Fl, you can rest assured that your vehicle’s transportation will go smoothly. Most of the time, this transportation happens without your car suffering any form of damage. But the presence of a few negligent tow truck companies that do not take the necessary steps and safety measures to ensure the towing of a car without any damage, increases the chances of the towed vehicle being damaged.
Towing Company Liability for Any Damage to the Vehicle
Suppose your vehicle gets damaged as a direct result of the negligent behavior of the tow truck company’s team. In that case, the tow truck company and the team member can be held responsible.
Negligent actions of a tow truck company include.
- Using improper towing equipment.
- Using towing equipment inappropriately.
- Incorrectly using winch hook points.
- Malfunctioning or defective equipment.
- Miscalculating the size and weight of towed vehicles.
- Driving recklessly, while towing a vehicle.
- Misjudging the turning radius or the ground clearance of the towed vehicle.
- Drifting wide into other lanes and causing accidents.
- Causing collisions (head-on or sideswiping) while towing a vehicle.
The first step you should take after any type of vehicular accident is documenting the damage. In this case, you should immediately start taking pictures of the damage done to your vehicle. A general rule while doing so is to take multiple images from several angles to document the severity of the damage. You should also carefully preserve any documentation or paperwork provided by the towing company. Additionally, asking the employee involved for their name is also essential. Usually, an automobile mechanic is required to assess the damage to your vehicle. It is good practice to keep a copy of their findings that you can submit with an insurance or legal claim to serve as proof of your account of the accident.
Types of Damage Your Car Can Experience While Being Towed by a Tampa towing company
You may be surprised by the types of damage your car can experience while being towed. Although it is a rare occasion for a vehicle to get damaged during towing, the tow truck driver or staff errors can result in the tow truck company taking responsibility for the damage.
The most common form of damage your vehicle can sustain because of the negligence of the tow truck is bumper damage. Suppose the tow truck operator fails to hook up your car to their winch correctly. In that case, it can easily result in front or rear bumper damage. Furthermore, every vehicle has a differently designed bumper. While some cars have bumpers made from plastic, others have metal ones. These varying bumper designs need to be handled differently.
The second most common type of damage caused by towing trucks is transmission damage. This happens when a vehicle’s tires are allowed to roll on the ground while being towed, and the car is left in the ‘drive’ gear. Similarly, if the vehicle is being towed with the front wheels on the road, it can result in the trans-axle hitting the ground and sustaining significant damage.
Your vehicle can also sustain minor damage like:
- Deflated or punctured tires.
- Damage or cracks in the windshield.
- Dents or scratches on the body panels.
- Misalignment of the wheels.
- Scratches on the dashboard and interiors.
What to Do if Your Car Gets Damaged While Being Towed?
It would be best if you got repairs on any form of damage to a car immediately. These repair bills can be extensive and can dent your finances significantly. However, determining the party responsible for damage to your vehicle is essential.
If the tow truck company is responsible for the damages through the negligence of their personnel, they should be held accountable. Any reputable tow truck company will take towing company liability as they will recognize their mistakes and cover your repair costs.
However, you must also ensure that you find a reliable auto mechanic to perform repairs on your vehicle at a reasonable cost. Some disreputable towing companies might try to undervalue the damages done to your vehicle; in which case, it is wise to take legal action.
You should also check with your insurance provider if your policy covers damages caused while your vehicle is being towed. If you end up in a dispute with your insurance company and the towing company fails to take liability, you can consult with a legal professional to recover your financial costs.
Although any reliable Tampa towing company believes in taking responsibility for any damages caused to your vehicle due to their negligence or inadequate towing practices, you may need to consult a lawyer if the damage is extensive. They will guide you towards obtaining your rights as a customer.
While any company can tow a vehicle, it takes a genuine professional Tampa towing company to tow your vehicle while taking utmost care of it. Towing is a difficult job, and pairing trained drivers with state-of-the-art tow trucks is the only way to ensure it gets done with no hiccups. It would be best if you did not have to pay for someone else’s mistakes; that is why it is crucial to understand towing company liability.