COLLIER COUNTY, Fla. - Collier County said they don't make any money when a car is towed from an accident scene. But one resident, who's in the business, says he was charged too much. It's been almost a month since Jeff Barr's daughter was in a two-car accident on Livingston Road. While he says his daughter was at fault, his family didn't deserve the treatment they received as soon as the tow truck arrived.
"He first was argumentative about taking the car to the place where we wanted it, which was a friend of ours body shop, he wouldn't do that, he wanted to take it to his impound lot so he could make more money," said Jeff Barr.
A deputy on the scene called in a wrecker through the Sheriff's Office rotation call system. The rates are set by the Board of County Commissioners. On this day, Carlos Towing picked up the car. While the driver agreed to take it to the shop of Barr's choice, Barr said he was shocked when he picked up the towing bill.
"Towed the seven miles, for 430 dollars."
The county said it sets the tow rate and the rate per mile, and said the Sheriff's Office enforces the ordinance. But the ordinance says nothing about a labor fee, an admistrative fee, or a $25 fee for road hazard clean up - all that Barr says he was charged.
"My frustration is highway robbery."
We tried to get an answer about these extra charges, but have not heard back. Carlos Towing declined our request for an interview. Barr owns Barr's Performance Maintenance and Restoration and said he has towing companies he could have used to move the car and it would have saved him hundreds of dollars.
"So I don't mind paying a little more, I typically pay someone a little more to tow a car for me at their leisure, thats fine. But it's 7 miles, that's the bottom line. Round trip included coming from his place in Pine Ridge, he can't have more than 2 hours in hauling two cars and making over 800 dollars. That's really nuts."