Erap tells motorists: Private towing firms banned in Manila

Daily Tribune | by Tribune Wires |  October 24, 2016

To prevent them from becoming victims of abusive towing crews, Manila Mayor Joseph “Erap” yesterday reminded motorists that private towing companies are barred from operating in the city.

Estrada said his last year’s order to suspend indefinitely the operations of private towing firms in the city still stands and that only those that belong to the city’s Manila Traffic and Parking Bureau (MTPB) are authorized to do so.

“Since March last year, we have stopped all towing activities within Manila. So if a towing truck without MTPB markings would try to get your vehicle, that is illegal. Call the police,” the Manila mayor called on the motorists.

In March last year, after receiving numerous complaints from the public, the city government stopped the operations of RWM and PMA Towing Services Inc., the two privately-owned towing operators previously accredited by the city government.

Estrada said to date he has not authorized any new towing operators to resume operations in the city.

“We have our own tow trucks and personnel and they are under strict orders to assist the motorists in emergencies,” he pointed out.

Only recently, the Manila Police District (MPD) had arrested a driver of a towing truck of PMA Towing and Trucking Services Inc. after forcibly towing at least two trucks in Pandacan, according to MPD director Joel Coronel.

Coronel said they have charged the suspect, Christian Gonzales, 37, with violation of Anti-Carnapping Law, Driving Without License, OR/CR, and license plates, and for operating without business permits.
Gonzales’ two other cohorts escaped.

“Their business permit has been revoked by Mayor Estrada since last May,” Coronel said, surprised that the PMA Towing and Trucking Services is still operating “guerrilla-style” in Manila.

Worse, Coronel said this is the second time a towing truck of the company was apprehended since the prohibition of towing activities in Manila last year.

“Unang una ay ipinagbabawal na ‘yan at marami pong naagrabyado na mga kababayan natin sa Maynila. Dahil sila po ay naniningil ng almost P10,000 bawat towing nila,” he pointed out.

The MPD chief advised motorists to call MPD at 523-83-87 or Patrol 117 if they encounter such private towing trucks within the city.