Township of Montville, NJ
Morris County
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[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Montville by Ord. No. 1308 as Ch. 5.52 of the 1998 Code. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
General penalty — See Ch. 1, Art. III.
Vehicles and traffic — See Ch. 10.
Fee schedule — See Ch. 169.
Hazardous materials cleanup — See Ch. 215.

§ 358-1 Short title.

This chapter shall be known and cited as the "Montville Township Wrecker Ordinance."

§ 358-2 Definitions.

[Amended by Ord. No. 1999-45]
The following words and terms, when used in this chapter, shall have the following meanings, unless the context clearly states otherwise:
AUTOMOBILE
A private automobile of a private-passenger- or station-wagon-type that is owned or hired and is neither used as a public or livery conveyance for passengers or rented to others with a driver; and a motor vehicle with a pickup body or delivery sedan, a van, or a panel truck or a camper-type vehicle used for recreational purposes owned by an individual or by a husband or wife who are residents of the same household, not customarily used in the occupation, profession or business on the insured other than farming or ranching; an automobile owned by a farm family copartnership or corporation, which is principally garaged on a farm or ranch and otherwise meets the definitions contained in this section, shall be considered a private automobile owned by two or more relatives resident in the same household; any other automobile having a registered vehicle weight of less than 12,500 pounds.[1]
BASIC TOWING SERVICE
The servicing of a vehicle or the removal and transportation of a vehicle from a highway, street, or other public or private road, parking area of from a storage facility. This chapter and the definitions herein shall not include the recovery of a vehicle from a position beyond the public right-of-way or berm, or from being impaled upon any other object outside of the public right-of-way or berm.
DISABLED VEHICLE
A vehicle which has been abandoned, impounded or rendered inoperable as a result of a mechanical failure, involvement in an accident or criminal activity. A vehicle, the location of which constitutes a hazard to the motoring public, shall be deemed disabled for the purposes of this chapter.
EMERGENCY REPAIR SERVICE
Repairs which can be performed at the scene of a tow, including but not limited to flat tire changing, jump starting and gasoline deliveries.
HEAVY-DUTY WRECKER/TOW TRUCK
A vehicle driven by mechanical power which has a hydraulic-operated twenty-five-ton boom and forty-five-thousand-pound under-reach/wheel lift and employed for the same purpose of towing, transporting, conveying, recovering or removing any and all kinds of vehicles over 12,500 pounds, which are unable to be and actually are not operated under their own power from the place where they are disabled to some other place, or any vehicle(s) which the Police Department has order to be impounded.
IMPOUNDMENT
The act of storing and confining a vehicle upon an order of the Police Department at either the towing operator's storage area or at a Township facility as a result of abandonment, involvement in an accident, or suspected criminal activity.
INSIDE BUILDING STORAGE FACILITY
A vehicle storage facility that is completely indoors, having one or more openings or storage bins in the walls for the storage of vehicles and that is secured by a locking device on each bin or opening.
LICENSED WRECKER
Any wrecker licensed pursuant to the provisions of this chapter.
LICENSEE
Any person, firm, partnership, association, corporation, company, or organization of any kind that is in contract with the Township, pursuant to this chapter, to provide wrecker/towing services to the Township.
MONTVILLE TOWNSHIP STORAGE FACILITY
[2]
The Montville Township Public Works Garage located at 143 River Road, Montville.
OUTSIDE SECURED STORAGE FACILITY
A vehicle storage facility that is not completely indoors and that is secured by a fence, wall or other man-made barrier that is at least six feet in height and is protected with on-site security or an alarm system. Outside storage facilities shall also maintain adequate lighting to protect stored vehicles from vandalism.
OWNER
A person, firm, corporation or partnership who owns and/or operates a vehicle on the roads and highways within the Township of Montville, which vehicle, by reason of being disabled of abandoned on the roads and highways of Montville Township, requires towing and/or servicing.
PERSON
Any person, firm, partnership, association, company or organization of any kind.
TOWING OPERATOR
A person, firm, corporation or partnership engaged in the business of providing towing, road service and storage services for vehicles.
TOWNSHIP COMMITTEE
Elected officials of the Township of Montville through which legislative and investigative powers of the municipality are exercised.
WRECKER/TOW TRUCK
A vehicle driven by mechanical power and employed for the same purpose of towing, transporting, conveying, recovering or removing any and all kinds of vehicles under 12,500 pounds, which are unable to be and actually are not operated under their own power from the place where they are disabled to some other place, or any vehicle(s) which the Police Department has ordered to be impounded.
[1]:
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
[2]:
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).

§ 358-3 Tower to be licensed and appointed.

[Amended by Ord. No. 1999-21; Ord. No. 1999-45]
A. 
Any person having available space at a garage who desires to engage in municipal towing at police request, as delineated in this chapter, must first apply for a license according to the terms and conditions of this chapter and, if approved for a license according to the terms and conditions of this chapter and, if approved for a license, enter into a Committee, for a duration of one year. Such persons shall be known as "licensees" and shall serve as such pursuant to the terms of the contract between the licensee and the Township, subject to the Local Public Contracts Law as well as this chapter.
B. 
No licensee shall subcontract to any person who is not a licensed authorized tower any work to be performed by him of the Township, without having first obtained the written approval from the Police Department for the use of the subcontractor, which approval is necessary in order to maintain an equitable and nondiscriminatory administration of the rotation lists referenced in § 358-14. Any licensee authorized to subcontract work remains liable for any violation by the subcontractor shall be governed by all the terms and conditions of this chapter.
C. 
Any licensee who voluntarily removes itself from the rotating list, thereby relinquishing its license under this chapter, forfeits the right to reapply for a license under this chapter until the next awarding of licenses and contracts by the Township.
D. 
There shall be no limitation on the number of light-duty towers licensed and appointed to service the Township of Montville. All qualified applicants shall be appointed.
[Amended 4-10-2007 by Ord. No. 2007-14; 6-11-2013 by Ord. No. 2013-17]
E. 
There shall be no limitation on the number of heavy-duty towers licensed and appointed to serve the Township of Montville. All qualified applicants shall be appointed.
[Amended 6-11-2013 by Ord. No. 2013-17]

§ 358-4 Services to be furnished.

Licensees shall furnish towing, storage and emergency repair services, in conformance with this chapter, to motor vehicles within the limits of the Township of Montville when requested to do so by the Montville Police Department. These services are to include the towing and storage of unclaimed or abandoned vehicles when requested to do so by the Montville Township Police Department.

§ 358-5 License applications.

[Amended by Ord. No. 1999-45]
Applications for a license issued hereunder shall be on forms furnished by the Montville Township Police Department and shall state:
A. 
The full name and business address of the applicant, and whether he is owner, lessee of bailee. If the application is made for a corporation, it shall state the names and addresses of the officers and directors thereof, its registered office and its registered agent, and the telephone numbers available on a twenty-four-hour per day basis.
B. 
The year, make and type of each wrecker, its serial number, registration number, vehicle lifting capacities and registered owner.
C. 
The address where the wrecker(s) shall be regularly garaged.
D. 
The names of all towing vehicle operators, their addresses and the serial numbers of their New Jersey motor vehicle driver licenses.
E. 
Evidence to demonstrate that the person, company or corporation applying for this license has at least three years' experience, as sole proprietor or as an employee, in the towing of automobiles.
F. 
That the applicant has an inside building storage facility or outside secured storage facility with available space for properly accommodating and protecting all motor vehicles to be towed or otherwise removed from the place where they are disabled or impounded, and that any such vehicles will not be stored or allowed to remain on public property or Township streets or on property which is not zoned for such storage. The applicant must, therefore, obtain from the Zoning Officer of the Township of Montville a zoning permit demonstrating that the premises upon which the inside building storage facility or outside secured storage facility is located does not violate Chapter 230, Land Use. The zoning permit, once obtained, must be made part of the application.
G. 
That the applicant can ensure a fifteen-minute response time on all calls, heavy or unusual traffic conditions expected.
H. 
The application shall have affixed thereto an affidavit to be sworn by the applicant that all of the information given in the application is true and correct, and said application shall be submitted to the Police Chief.
I. 
Applications shall be filed with the Township Clerk no later than October 21 of the year preceding the license year.
[Amended 6-11-2013 by Ord. No. 2013-17]
J. 
All drivers involved in heavy-duty rescue towing must provide copies of New Jersey CDL Class A license with hazardous material, tank, double and triple trailer endorsements. All drivers must also provide proof of medical clearance.

§ 358-6 Application fee.

[Amended 4-10-2007 by Ord. No. 2007-14; 3-23-2010 by Ord. No. 2010-11]
An application fee for each license shall be accompanied by an application fee as set forth in Chapter 169, Fee Schedule, payable to the Township of Montville, in addition to any fee for the criminal history check set forth in § 358-7 as well as any other fees required by this chapter. These fees do not include the license fees as set forth in § 358-9. Such application fees are not refundable in the event that an inspection of the vehicle(s) has been made, and no license is issued because of failure to comply with any of the requirements of this chapter or of any regulations mandated under this chapter by the Police Chief.

§ 358-7 Investigation and inspection by Police Chief.

A. 
The Township Clerk shall refer the application for a license to the Police Chief who shall cause an investigation to be made of the applicant and of his proposed business operation and shall make or have made an inspection of the vehicle(s) to be licensed. The Police Chief may delegate the inspection of the vehicle(s) to be licensed. The Police Chief may delegate the inspection of the vehicle(s) to an independent person, not engaged in business in the Township, who shall be qualified by experience and training to make such inspection. Any such person shall report to the Police Chief whether the vehicle(s) are in a thoroughly safe and sanitary condition and comply with the requirements and standards of this chapter as set forth herein. The Township shall reserve the right to disqualify from consideration any applicant whose performance on similar service previously provided to the Township was determined to be unsatisfactory. Equipment and personnel of the licensee are subject to periodic inspections and approval by the Township.
B. 
Within 60 days after the receipt of the completed application, the Police Chief is to complete the investigation and inspection, and according to the terms of this section as well as any other relevant section of this chapter, either refuse to approve the application, or, shall approve the application and classify each wrecker to be licensed as either light-duty or heavy-duty ensuring compliance with the minimum standards delineated in § 358-10.
C. 
Included in the Police Chief's investigation of the applicant shall be a criminal history check with the New Jersey State Police Bureau of Investigation.
D. 
The Township of Montville recognizes that the licensee must be trustworthy in that he is safeguarding vehicles belonging to others. Therefore, to protect the public interest, the Township may disqualify any licensee wherein an employee, owner, principal, agent, etc., has been convicted of a crime or a violation under this chapter which crime or violation would indicate that the licensee may not be responsible in the best interest of others. Such crimes or violations would include, but not be limited to, car theft, stealing of car parts, break-ins, thefts, overcharging, assault, etc.
E. 
If any licensee or employee, owner, principal or agent, etc., of a licensee is found guilty of such a crime or violation during the term of the license, the license may be canceled by the Township for reasons aforesaid. The licensee shall notify the Police Department in writing of any criminal charges or violation that become pending against him or his employees during the term of the license.
F. 
The Township of Montville recognizes that tow truck operators must also be drivers who abide by this state's motor vehicle laws. Accordingly, any tow truck operator having one or more convictions, within three years of the date of the licensee's application, or renewal thereof, is filed with the Township, for a moving violation of the motor vehicle laws of this state, which the Township Police Chief determines will negatively impact upon the ability of the tow truck operator to safely and properly operate a motor vehicle, will be disqualified from operating any of the licensee's motor vehicles within the Township. If the licensee is already licensed, upon a conviction for a moving motor vehicle violation which the Township Police Chief determines will negatively impact upon the ability of the tow truck operator to safely and properly operate a motor vehicle, a tow truck operator will be immediately disqualified from operating any of the licensee's motor vehicles within the Township.
G. 
The Police Department reserves the right to investigate at any time the licensee or anyone employed by the licensee for the purpose of fulfilling the contract herein.

§ 358-8 Standards for approval of applications.

The Police Chief shall approve and classify an application only when he finds that the following requirements have been met:
A. 
That the public convenience and necessity will be served by the use of the vehicle(s) for which the application has been made.
B. 
That the insurance policies as required herein have been procured and supplied.
C. 
That the applicant and proposed operators are fit persons to operate the wrecker and conduct a wrecker service in the Township. License holders will be required to submit a list of operators and their legal addresses and keep the Police Department informed of any changes in the operator's and/or their legal addresses.
D. 
That the requirements of this chapter and all other governing laws, statues and ordinances have been met.
E. 
That the wrecker(s) have been properly licensed and inspected by the State of New Jersey having the necessary stickers affixed, and meet with the required minimum standards as set forth by this chapter.
F. 
Compliance with the requirements of § 358-5 and all other sections of this chapter.
G. 
That the applicant demonstrates to the Police Department that the applicant will be able to ensure a fifteen-minute response time for each call, heavy or unusual traffic conditions excepted.

§ 358-9 Issuance of licenses; fees.

[Amended by Ord. No. 1999-45]
A. 
Upon written notification by the Chief of Police that an application has been approved and classified, as well as compliance being met with all other sections of this chapter, the Municipal Clerk of the Township of Montville shall issue a license to the licensee under this chapter, as well as individual licenses for each wrecker owned or operated by the licensee designating such wrecker as either light-duty or heavy-duty.
B. 
Prior to conducting any towing activities pursuant to this chapter, the licensee must execute a contract approved by both counsel for the Township and the Township Committee, which contract is in conformance with the Local Public Contracts Law[1] and any other relevant laws, regulations and ordinances.
[1]:
Editor's Note: See N.J.S.A. 40A:11-1 et seq.
C. 
The fee for a light-duty or heavy-duty municipal towing license shall be as set forth in Chapter 169, Fee Schedule, per year. This fee shall be payable before issuance of the license regardless of the time of year at which the license is issued, and fees shall not be prorated. In the event that duplicates of a license are required, the same shall be supplied for a fee for each as set forth in Chapter 169. Said license shall remain valid from January 1 to December 31 of each year or part thereof.[2]
[2]:
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
D. 
Light-duty and heavy-duty municipal towing licenses will expire on December 31 of each year. Complete license applications and fees must be submitted annually in order for licenses to be considered for renewal. It is expressly ordained that all vehicles licensed by the licensee must be inspected by the Police Department annually.

§ 358-10 Towing vehicles and operators.

[Amended by Ord. No. 1999-45]
A. 
Each wrecker must meet all of the requirements of the Revised Statutes, Title 39, Motor Vehicle Rules and Regulation,[1] and must have a lifting capacity of at least five tons. The Township reserves the right to request verification of the vehicle's capacities from either the vehicle's manufacturer or a reputable testing laboratory.
[1]:
Editor's Note: See N.J.S.A. 39:1-1 et seq.
B. 
Classification of wreckers (light-/heavy-duty). The following shall be the minimum standards to be utilized by the Police Chief in the classification of wreckers as either of the following:[2]
(1) 
Light-duty wreckers shall be able to handle all makes of passenger cars, small trucks and any other vehicle having a registered weight of less than 12,500 pounds, and which complies with the following standards:
(a) 
Dual rear wheels or equivalent.
(b) 
A power take-off-controlled winch with a minimum cable thickness of 1/2 inch or equivalent.
(c) 
Comparable weight equal to the vehicles to be towed, with a minimum of 5,500 pounds.
(d) 
A three-eighths-inch safety chain. The lift chain and the safety chain shall not be attached in any form or manner to the same part of the wrecker.
(e) 
One reflectorized traffic vest.
(f) 
A five-pound CO2 dry-powder extinguisher or equivalent.
(g) 
One broom, shovel and debris container.
(h) 
Ten pounds absorbent materials such as "speedy dry" and any other materials necessary to remove any and all debris from the roadway at the tow site. In addition to removal of any absorbent materials applied at the scene, each official tower must dispose of any vehicle debris, such as glass or vehicle parts, removed from the roadway in a lawful manner.
(i) 
Emergency lighting in conformance with applicable federal and New Jersey state statutes and regulations. This lighting must include at a minimum either an amber beacon light or a light bar, either of which must have visibility of 360°.
(j) 
Equipped with a winch rated to accept at least 8,000 pounds.
(2) 
Heavy-duty wrecker shall be able to handle all makes of trucks as well as any other vehicle having registered weight in excess of or equal to 12,500 pounds, and which complies with the following minimum standards:
(a) 
Dual rear wheels or equivalent.
(b) 
Manufacturing rating: gross vehicle weight of 15,000 pounds. Manufacturing rating may be obtained from the factory where the vehicle originates. Other written evidence of gross vehicle weight may be accepted by the Police Chief if verified.
(c) 
Power take-off-controlled winch with a minimum thickness of five-eighths of an inch.
(d) 
A one-half-inch safety chain. The lift chain and safety chain shall not be attached in any form or manner to the same part of the wrecker.
(e) 
Air brakes.
(f) 
Connecting air lines for connection with the air compressor and air brake lines of the towed vehicle.
(g) 
A detachable truck light bar to be attached to the rear of the towed vehicle.
(h) 
Ten pounds absorbent materials such as "speedy dry" and any other materials necessary to remove any and all debris from the roadway at the tow site. In addition to removal of any absorbent materials applied at the scene, each official tower must dispose of any vehicle debris, such as glass or vehicle parts, removed from the roadway in a lawful manner.
(i) 
Emergency lighting in conformance with applicable federal and New Jersey state statutes and regulations. This lighting must include at a minimum either an amber beacon light or a light bar, either of which must have visibility of 360°.
(j) 
Each heavy-duty wrecker shall be equipped with either two winches, each rated for at least 25,000 pounds, or one winch is rated for at least 50,000 pounds.
(k) 
Each licensed tower licensed with heavy-duty wreckers must, in addition to any other criteria, have available at least one flatbed truck duly licensed under the terms of this chapter. They must also have available at least one landall or equivalent type trailer and one recovery trailer to include air-cushion/air-bag recovery; straps; broom and shovel; regular saw, and K-12/saw/chain saw.
[2]:
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
C. 
General requirements. Every licensed tower must have wheel-lift or flatbed capability for its light-duty wrecker. Also, within one year of the effective date of this chapter, every licensed tower must have under-reach capability for its heavy-duty wreckers. This is necessary in order to ensure the capability of the licensed tower to lift towed vehicles from the underside of the vehicle in a damage-free manner.
D. 
In addition to the service herein outlined, the licensee will be required to furnish extra towing equipment and service during storm periods, period of snow emergencies, traffic emergencies, disasters, any acts of God, and for any other reason when so designated by the Chief of Police, or their authorized representative. During such periods, which are herein referred to as "standby periods," the licensee shall be required to furnish adequate equipment and service to be held ready to remove the following types of vehicles:
(1) 
Passenger automobiles and trucks under one ton.
(2) 
Trucks one ton and over.
E. 
Standby service will begin when the Chief of Police, or his authorized designee, calls the licensee initially and will end when he terminates the standby status by telephone or personal contact with the licensee.

§ 358-11 Vehicle storage areas.

A. 
The office, workshop, and storage areas of the applicant must be located in zones where such use is permitted and will end when he terminates the standby status by telephone or personal contact with the licensee.
B. 
Each vendor providing towing services must show proof of ownership or permission for use of proper land area to store a minimum of 10 cars, that is located either within the Township boundaries or within three miles traveling distance from the boundaries of the Township.
C. 
Adequate lighting, shielded from abutting premises, shall be maintained during night hours, and all gates and access doors to the storage area will be locked to provide safety for the automobiles in storage and their contents from theft, damage or vandalism.[1]
[1]:
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
D. 
All storage areas shall have fencing at least six feet in height, which fencing shall be constructed of a material which will shield the vehicles from the public view and must meet Township building requirements.
E. 
No stacking of wrecked automobiles one on top of the other shall be permitted, and only one level of storage is permitted.
F. 
All automobiles must be stored singly and arranged as to permit inspection and subsequent removal.
G. 
Each automobile stored in violation of these specifications and without the permission of the Montville Chief of Police shall be subject to a penalty of $5 per day, per vehicle, and the Township reserves the right to terminate any individual's or firm's license in the event of improper storage.
H. 
An on-site inspection and approval of the proposed storage area will be made by Township representatives prior to award of this license.
I. 
The Township reserves the right, during any emergency, to designate temporary areas owned or leased by the Township for storage of automobiles towed to said area at the direction of the Chief of Police. During said emergencies, the licensee shall be entitled to make regular charges to the owners of the automobiles so removed to that storage area.
J. 
The licensee shall be responsible for obtaining a valid salvage title for each abandoned automobile in his possession, that was obtained through towing under this license. The licensee will endeavor to dispose of the abandoned automobiles as rapidly as possible by public auction in compliance with the law of the State of New Jersey.

§ 358-12 Towing and storage of vehicles.

A. 
The licensee shall be responsible for the towing of automobiles as described herein on a twenty-four-hour basis, seven days a week during the term of the license.
B. 
The licensee shall respond promptly to all requests for towing service by the Township. In any event, the licensee shall respond and be present at the towing location within 15 minutes of receipt of notice of the towing, unless heavy or unusual traffic conditions within or without the Township prevent the licensee from arriving within 15 minutes. In that event, the licensee shall arrive in a reasonable time given allowance for said traffic conditions. Repeated late arrivals without satisfactory cause shall constitute grounds on which the Township, in its discretion, may be considered a violation of this chapter by the licensee.
C. 
Nothing in this chapter shall prevent the owner or operator of an automobile from contacting a tower or wrecker of his or her own choice to remove the automobile from the public streets of the Township after it has become disabled or otherwise inoperable, unless the police officer on the scene determines that public safety requires that the vehicle be immediately removed from the scene, at which time a licensed tower will be called.
D. 
All owners or operators of disabled automobiles retain the right to direct the towing vehicle to remove the disabled automobile to a garage or workshop of their own choosing.
E. 
The licensee shall remove and tow vehicles for storage at either the licensee's storage yard or the Montville Township facility, as directed by the Montville Township Police Department, according to the following categories of vehicles for tow:
(1) 
Vehicles to be towed to the licensee's storage facility will include those which are abandoned, illegally parked, disabled, or involved in accidents;
(2) 
Vehicles to be towed to the Montville Township storage facility will include those suspected of involvement in criminal activity, stolen vehicles, vehicles confiscated or seized pursuant to the Forfeiture Statute (N.J.S.A. 2C:64-1 et seq.), or which are involved in a fatal accident; and
(3) 
The decision as to which category any vehicle tow is assigned and to which storage facility it will be towed by the licensee shall be made by the Township of Montville Police Department, and the licensee shall have no responsibility for the same.
F. 
The licensee shall be responsible for the towing of vehicles described in Subsection E from streets, public alleys, public rights-of-way, public easements, avenues, thoroughfares, public or quasipublic places, including parks and playgrounds, or any other Township-owned lots, as directed by the Township of Montville Police Department.
G. 
In cases where the licensee is directed to tow a vehicle to the Montville Township storage facility, and if the owner of operator of that vehicle appears on the scene before the vehicle has been hooked to a licensed wrecker, then the licensee will make no charge in that instance.[1]
[1]:
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
H. 
In the event that the licensee has been summoned by the Township for the purpose of towing a vehicle, and if the owner or operator of that vehicle appears on the scene before the vehicle has been hooked to a licensed wrecker, then the licensee will make no charge in that instance.
I. 
The licensee will be responsible to clean up all broken glass and debris at the scenes of accidents.

§ 358-13 Rates and charges.

A. 
The fees set forth in the schedule below for towing and storage rates are the maximum permitted charges that shall apply to the towing and/or storage of passenger automobiles. Towing operators transporting multiple passenger vehicles at one time shall receive the applicable fees for each passenger vehicle transported.
[Amended 12-12-2006 by Ord. No. 2006-58]
(1) 
The following towing and storage fees shall apply for passenger vehicles and other vehicles as indicated.
Base charge for towing:
Light-duty wrecker service
$90
Motorcycles/motorized bicycles
$80
Flatbed service
$100
Winching
$125 flat fee off road only
Light-duty road service
$50
Heavy-duty wrecker service
$350 per hour
Heavy-duty road service
$90 per hour
Wait time
1/2 hourly rate
Storage charges (per day for vehicles not claimed within 12 hours):
Outside secured
$30
Inside (only if directed by police)
$40
Truck storage
$65
Other charges:
Mileage (for towing outside of Township limits)
$4 per mile
Extra personnel (applicable to heavy-duty only)
$65 per man hour
Recovery heavy-duty
$350 per hour
Wait time
1/2 hourly rate
Administration charge (one time per vehicle)
$20
Recovery supervisor (heavy-duty only)
$125 per hour
(2) 
In the event that the towing operator has been summoned by the Township for the purpose of towing an abandoned vehicle, and if the owner or the operator appears on the scene before the vehicle is hooked to a tow truck, then the towing operator will make no charge in that instance.
(3) 
Vehicles that are towed under this chapter and that subsequently become the target of a police investigation (criminal, fatal accident, etc.), and become the responsibility of the Township to pay the tow charge shall be charged at the current rate for towing of Township-owned vehicles.
(4) 
Storage fees shall start after the first 12 hours of storage and be for twenty-four-hour periods. The fees set forth for storage are the maximum storage charges per twenty-four-hour period and same shall apply to a vehicle that is stored as a result of accidents, abandonments, repairs, or suspected criminal activity.
(5) 
Road repair services. The towing operator shall be permitted to charge an additional fee based on the towing operator's prevailing hourly labor rates and charges for parts or materials for any road repair services provided in addition to those defined herein. It shall be the responsibility of the tow operator to first inform the owner/operator of the vehicle of the hourly labor rates and the estimated total cost for parts and/or materials, and receive written consent from the owner/operator, prior to the performance of such additional road repair services.
(6) 
Wherever applicable, it shall be the responsibility of the towing operator to first inform the owner or operator of the estimated total cost prior to the performance of any towing service.
B. 
The licensee shall not charge a storage fee for any automobile stored at the Township of Montville storage facility, which is the Township Public Works garage, or other site as designated by the ranking police officer on the scene.
C. 
Every operator of towing service shall, prior to the actual towing or storing of any automobile, give the owner or operator a written estimate of cost, when feasible, and a written receipt when paid.
D. 
The rates applicable to towing services performed under this chapter shall be posted in a conspicuous place, visible to the public at both the licensee's storage facility and office and at the Montville Township Police Department.
E. 
The licensee shall prepare a bill for towing charges for each vehicle towed, consistent with the schedule of towing services under this chapter.
F. 
The licensee will be responsible to accept payment for towing and storage charges in the form of cash and personal checks with proper identification from vehicle owners or operators who have had their vehicle towed under this chapter.
G. 
Prior to the release of any vehicle by the Township storage facility, the Township will obtain payment for the licensee's towing fee as indicated on said bill. Thereafter, the licensee shall be remitted by the Township of Montville Finance Office.
H. 
Within 10 working days of the tow, the Police Department shall be responsible for attempting to notify the owner of an abandoned vehicle towed under this chapter that his/her vehicle has been towed to an impound area. In the event the towed vehicle is not removed by the owner within seven days, the licensee shall be responsible for notifying the Police Department in writing of said situation. Failure of the licensee to notify the Police Department as stated herein shall limit the storage charge to seven working days only. The Township will make good faith efforts to auction abandoned vehicles and other unclaimed vehicles towed within the Township pursuant to state law. The Township will not assist the licensee in otherwise collecting unpaid towing bills.
I. 
In the event that an auction on said vehicles is held, and money is received, the licensee shall be paid his towing fee for said vehicle from the auction amount, provided that the auction amount is equal to or greater than the towing fee. If not, the licensee shall receive the auction amount and the Township shall have no obligation to pay the licensee the difference. If the proceeds from such a sale of a vehicle are insufficient to pay the accrued towing or service charges for that vehicle, the licensed tower agrees that there shall be no further liability on the Township of Montville to pay same, and any excess amounts which may be due shall be waived.[1]
[1]:
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
J. 
The rates and charges provide for in this chapter are to be all inclusive, and no other rates shall be charged relating to the towing, storage, processing, servicing or release of vehicles.

§ 358-14 Rotational call-out list.

[Amended by Ord. No. 1999-45]
A. 
The Chief of Police shall see that a record is maintained containing the names, addresses and twenty-four-hour telephone numbers of all licensed wreckers and a record of the types of wreckers available to meet the specific need of the emergency.
B. 
Licensees shall perform licensed services on a rotating basis. The Chief of Police shall maintain a revolving list schedule of licensed wreckers to provide service where needed and instruct all duty officers to call each successive licensee provided on a seven day rotational basis.
C. 
No licensee shall respond to the scene of a disabled vehicle except upon notification by the police officer in charge at police headquarters or upon request of the driver.
D. 
Separate lists will be administrated by the Police Department for light-duty wreckers and heavy-duty wreckers. There will be four licensed towers on the light-duty wrecker list and two licensed towers on the heavy-duty wrecker list. If a licensee has both heavy-duty and light-duty wreckers, the licensee's turn on the light-duty list must be separate from its turn on the heavy-duty list.
E. 
Such additional rules and regulations regarding the rotation of wreckers as may be promulgated hereunder by the Police Chief and filed with the Municipal Clerk shall take effect immediately after service of a copy thereof on licensees, which service may be made by addressing same to said licensees by ordinary mail at their known address. If, pursuant to the rules and regulations for rotation of wreckers adopted under this chapter, the Police Department summons a wrecker to the scene of a disabled vehicle for the purpose of removing the vehicle and the summoned wrecker shall arrive at the scene, the owner or driver of the disabled vehicle shall use the services of the summoned wrecker.

§ 358-15 Licensee obligations.

A. 
By making application to be utilized as a licensed tow operator by the Police Department and by accepting such employment, the person or firm agrees to:
(1) 
Provide a prompt response to each call;
(2) 
Clean all debris at the accident site emanating from the accident;
(3) 
Provide the Police Department with the following information for automobiles unclaimed over 30 days:
(a) 
Year, make, color and vehicle identification number;
(b) 
Owner's name and address (if available);
(4) 
All licensees shall maintain a record showing all vehicle impounded at the request of the Township of Montville Police Department. Those vehicles may include abandoned vehicles, recovered stolen vehicles, or vehicles held for investigation by the Department. This record shall be made available to any police officer for inspection upon request and shall contain the following information:
(a) 
The date, time, location and name of the wrecker driver who towed the vehicle at the Department's request;
(b) 
The inventory set up in Subsection A(8);
(c) 
The physical location of the vehicle after being towed; and
(d) 
Identification of the impounded vehicle after being towed;
(5) 
A vehicle impounded by the police shall not be released without a written tow order release form authorizing said release;
(6) 
A written record shall be kept or maintained by the towing service indicating the name of the person releasing the vehicle, the type of proof of ownership presented, and the name of the person receiving said vehicle;
(7) 
It is expressly required that each licensee maintain a hard copy receipt of all services provided for under this chapter, which receipt shall bear the original signature of the person to whom the vehicle was released;
(8) 
After towing or hauling a vehicle to his garage, the licensee shall make an inventory of all accessible and apparent property contained within the vehicle and shall forward a copy of the inventory, setting forth the date of hauling and the name and address of a owner of the vehicle, within the two-hour period after expiration of the call period to the Police Department;
(9) 
Comply with all other terms and conditions of this chapter; and
(10) 
Comply with all motor vehicle rules and regulations found within Title 39.
B. 
Conduct of official towers and operators generally. No person owning or operating a wrecker shall:
(1) 
While waiting for employment, stand at any public street, intersection or any other public property without first obtaining the consent of a police officer or stand on any private property without first obtaining the consent of the owner of the property;
(2) 
Seek employment by repeatedly and persistently driving his wrecker to and from in a short space in front of any disabled vehicle or by otherwise interfering with the proper and orderly progress of traffic along the public highways;
(3) 
Permit or invite loitering within or near his wrecker;
(4) 
Solicit or attempt to divert prospective patrons of another wrecker, nor shall he solicit or divert prospective patrons of a given garage in the Township to any other garage;
(5) 
Solicit, demand or receive from any person any pay, commission, or emolument whatever, except the proper fee for transporting the disabled vehicle in accordance with the schedule of service rates listed in § 358-13;
(6) 
Pay any gratuity, tip or emolument to any third person not involved in the accident or to any police officer for information as to the location of any accident or for soliciting the employment of the licensee's services, nor give any gratuities, fees or other compensation or gifts to any member of the Police Department;
(7) 
No soliciting for vehicle repair shall be made by the licensee at the scene of an accident or within 48 hours of the release of any vehicle owner or operator from a hospital.
C. 
Release of vehicles. Licensees shall only release vehicles towed as a consequence of the licensee's performance under this chapter, after receiving a written authorization from the Police Department to release the vehicle.

§ 358-16 Indemnification.

A. 
The licensee will indemnify and hold harmless the Township of Montville, its officers and employees, from and against any and all claims for personal injury or property damage against the Township arising out of any towing services or repair services under this chapter.
B. 
The licensee will further defend the Township of Montville, its officers and employees, at the licensee's expense, in connection with any claim, demand, suit, or action brought against the Township and arising out of the operation of any towing, garage services provided under this chapter.
C. 
The licensees agree that to the fullest extent permitted by law, they shall defend, indemnify and hold harmless the Township from and against any and all claims, suits, judgments and demands whatsoever, including, without limitation, cost, litigation, expenses, counsel fees and liabilities with respect to injury or death of any person or persons whatsoever, or damage to property of any kind whomever owned, arising out of or caused or claimed to have been caused in whole or in part by the negligent acts or omissions of the licensee or any person directly or indirectly employed by the licensee while in the performance of rendering of any services pursuant to the scope of this chapter.

§ 358-17 Insurance.

A. 
If a license is awarded, the bidder will be required to purchase and maintain, during the term of the contact, comprehensive general liability insurance, comprehensive automobile liability insurance, and workers' compensation insurance with limits of not less than those set forth below:
(1) 
Comprehensive general liability insurance limit of liability shall not be less than $500,000 combined single limits (bodily injury and property damage) per occurrence and aggregate including premises operations and products/completed operations.
(2) 
Automobile liability insurance limit of liability shall not be less than $1,000,000 combined single limits (bodily injury and property damage) per occurrence.
(3) 
Workers' compensation insurance statutory coverage including liability coverage with a limit of at least $100,000 (where applicable).
(4) 
Excess umbrella coverage in the amount of $1,000,000 combined single limit.
B. 
On all liability policies, the Township of Montville shall be named as additional insured, and insurance certificates shall indicate such coverage.
C. 
All liability insurance policies will be endorsed to provide collision coverage for automobiles in tow.
D. 
The licensee shall provide the Township with certificates of insurance evidencing the coverages required above. These certificates must be provided before commencing work in connection with the licensee. Failure to submit this with the bid shall subject said bid to immediate disqualification. The licensee shall produce a certificate of insurance at the time of license renewal as well as at the time of the insurance policy renewal.
E. 
Insurance coverage shall indemnify the Township of Montville, its officers and employees, and the public against any loss due to injuries, accidents or damages of any character whatsoever, where any such damage is the result of act or omission of the licensee, his agents or employees in or due to the execution of the work called for under the license.
F. 
The certificates of insurance shall be issued by a company certified to do business in New Jersey, and each policy so required must contain an endorsement providing for 30 calendar days' written notice to both the Township of Montville and licensee, to be delivered by certified mail, receipt requested, of any intended cancellation, intention not to renew, or revision or material change in such coverage.
G. 
The providing of any insurance required herein shall not relieve the licensee of any of the responsibilities or obligations assumed by the licensee under this chapter or for which the bidder may be liable by law or otherwise.
H. 
Failure to provide and continue in force such insurance as required above shall be deemed a material breach of the license and shall operate as an immediate termination thereof.
I. 
In the event that any policy is changed so as to fail to conform to the above requirements or if any policy on any licensed wrecker is canceled for any reason, the Chief of Police shall notify the person responsible for the policy, and it shall be corrected or reinstated or replaced with a conforming policy within the 10 days after the notice is received and before the date of cancellation. If the policy or certificate is not corrected, reinstated or replaced within 10 calendar days of the date of cancellation, the Chief of Police shall immediately suspend the wrecker license and shall pick up from the owner all indicia of licensing, including any stickers, cards, medallions or other means of identification.

§ 358-18 License administration.

A. 
The Chief of Police shall see that a record is maintained of the regular response of wreckers to police calls.
B. 
The Chief of Police shall see that a record is maintained of any and all complaints from vehicle owners as to improper service or charges.
C. 
The Chief of Police is hereby given the authority to promulgate rules and regulations necessary to carry out the intent and purpose of this chapter, subject to the approval by resolution of the governing body of the Township of Montville.
D. 
The Chief of Police is hereby given the authority to suspend or revoke the right of any person or firm which is on the authorized list if the person or firm violates any of the terms and conditions of this chapter.
E. 
Failure of the licensee to submit the required listing of wreckers, including proof of ownership or lease or license, to be used during the term of this license shall be sufficient cause for cancellation of the license granted by the Township.
F. 
The Police Chief shall maintain due diligence over all licensed wreckers to see that they are kept in a condition of safety for the transportation and hauling of disabled vehicles, and shall have the right at all times to inspect all such licensed wreckers and shall maintain a record, in writing, of the report of all such inspections. If, at any time, the Police Chief shall deem the equipment inadequate or unsafe, he shall have the power to demand immediate correction, and, if not corrected to the full satisfaction of the Police Chief, he shall then have the power to revoke or suspend the license as in the case he may deem fit and proper, after a hearing is had upon the nature and circumstances of the violation.
G. 
The Police Chief is authorized and empowered to establish additional regulations not inconsistent herewith, as may be necessary and reasonable, governing the issuance of any license provided for in this chapter. All regulations promulgated by the Police Chief shall be filed with the Township Clerk.
H. 
Whenever the Police Chief promulgates regulations, notice of said promulgations shall be published in the official newspaper of the Township. That publication shall state that a regulation has been promulgated by the Police Chief of the Township of Montville pursuant to the authority of the Montville Township wrecker chapter and state specifically that a copy of the regulation is on file in the Montville Township Municipal Clerk's office and, unless an emergency situation arises, any such rule or regulation promulgated by the Chief of Police shall not become effective until 10 days after the date of publication in the newspaper.
I. 
The licensee must make himself available during normal business hours, or his designee authorized to act on his behalf, to handle complaints, make adjustments and transact business communications.
J. 
Documentation. Every licensee shall furnish, at its expense, the owner of a disabled vehicle with a copy of towing and storage rates as provided in this chapter. The regulations and fee schedules of licensees shall be made available to the public during the normal business hours of the municipality.

§ 358-19 Administrative appeals.

An applicant for a license under this chapter, as well as any licensee, has the right to file an administrative appeal of any action taken or ruling made by the Police Chief in the administration of this chapter. The appeal must be filed in writing with the Township Administrator within 10 calendar days of the Police Chief's decision. A hearing is to be held within 15 days of the filing of the appeal with a written ruling forthcoming from the Township Administrator's decision shall be the final administrative decision rendered on any appeal filed pursuant to this chapter.

§ 358-20 Services to Township.

The Township of Montville believes there will be occasions that require the licensee to provide services to Township-owned vehicles. The licensee shall charge the Township according to the service rates delineated in § 358-13 for performing these services. This municipal expenditure is subject to municipal budgeting law. The service shall include, but not be limited to, jump starts and change of flat tires of Township vehicles.

§ 358-21 Applicability.

Only licensed towers of the Township of Montville are subject to the terms of this chapter. When the owner or driver of a disabled vehicle indicates a choice of a specific wrecker owner who is not licensed by the Township pursuant to this chapter, that wrecker shall be called to the scene at the discretion of the police officer on the scene based on his/her consideration of the public safety and the need to clear the scene. If any such wrecker is called to the scene, this chapter does not apply to that wrecker's activities.

§ 358-22 Violations and penalties; suspension or revocation of license.

A. 
Any licensee who violates any provision of this chapter shall be subject to such penalties as are provided for in Chapter 1, Article III, General Penalty.
[Amended 2-28-2006 by Ord. No. 2006-09]
B. 
Notwithstanding the above penalty provisions, it is expressly ordained that in addition to any fines, the following suspension and revocation schedule is to be applied to the licenses of the licensee, together with all associated wrecker licenses, found to have violated the provisions of this chapter by charging and collecting service rates in excess of those set forth in § 358-13.
(1) 
Ninety-day license suspension of any licenses issued under this chapter for a first offense.
(2) 
One-hundred-eighty-day license suspension for a second offense.
(3) 
Permanent revocation of any licenses issued under this chapter for a third offense.