Alderman pushing ordinance that would require city license for tow truck drivers

Chicago News
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CHICAGO — At least six people were injured Friday when a tow truck driver lost control of the truck and caused a CTA bus to veer off the road and into a Northwest Side building.

The crash spotlights what may be a bigger problem in the city.

Are tow truck drivers following the rules of the road?

36th Ward Alderman Gilbert Villegas wants to make sure they do. He introduced an ordinance last week that would require tow truck drivers to be licensed by the city in order to work in the city. Villegas said drivers are often times speeding through city streets to arrive at a crash scene and tow a vehicle.

“Right now they are licensed by the ICC,” he said. “This would pull back their license (and) their ability to operate within the city of Chicago.”

He thinks every ward in the city is dealing with this.

“I’ve had upwards of 50 complaints in my ward,” he said.

And what’s worse are the stories from consumers who fear they are being taken advantage of by tow truck operators the minute they arrive.

“When they get there, they are telling people, ‘We are covered by your insurance.’ And that’s not the case,” Villegas said.

The ordinance would help address that issue as well with stricter fines.

Right now, the ordinance in the finance committee. Hearings on the issue would be next.

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