If it hasn’t happened to you, its happened to someone you know – run into a building for “a quick second” and return to discover the car is gone. Minor panic attack… but no, it’s not stolen. Someone nearby delivers the news, “They wreck yuh… hardluck dred”. Defeated and despondent, you now have the tedious task of figuring out where your car is impounded. Because connecting with the things you need (like your car) is what we do best, here is a handy list of where your car goes when it gets wrecked.
Or you can just #SearchF1RST to find the profile of every tow yard in Trinidad (apparently you’re still safe in Tobago). Just search “towed cars” or “wrecked cars” on F1RST.com. Then select your most likely location, then call direct and check that your car has reached, then go search “ATM” to get the cash before you approach the yard.
Port of Spain (Upper & Downtown) – The Old Traffic Branch (Opposite the market by Sealots)
St. Clair\Woodbrook, Maraval & St. James – Dock Road (By Movietowne)
Chaguanas, Freeport & Couva – The Borough Corporation (Opposite the Chaguanas Police Station)
San Fernando & Environs – San Fernando Police Station (Harris Promenade). *A contribution has come in from a man we shall refer to only as ‘Mark’ who says, “Pay yuh TT$500.00 on Penitence Street; the Fines & Revenue Office at City Hall, then taxi across to Circular Road. Take ah “Marabella Maxi-Taxi” and jump out by Vistabella Presbyterian Primary School, and walk up the road just pass Puff n Stuff on the left hand side yuh go see yuh vehicle. Give de Policeman yuh receipt and show him yuh Driver’s Permit, yeah and pray rain doh fall when yuh jump out the Maxi! PS. yuh could tell this is from fist-hand experience!!!”
Penal – The Municipal Police (Behind the Market)
Point Fortin – Point Fortin Police Station (Guapo Cap-De-Ville Main Road)
Siparia – Siparia Police Station (Siparia Erin Road)
Arima – Malabar Police Station
Just in case you’re wondering about wreck-free zones, here’s a quick round-up of those areas based on our research (and our favourite reactions from the authorities).
Sangre Grande – “You want to know if they have that in GRANDE?! Hahaha, no. But you can get a ticket though.”
Morvant – “Nah we will come and brief the man on the offense, we en go wreck him. If he park in front your house then take action as a citizen, if you talk to them a few times then we’ll come down”
Diego Martin – “Your car get wreck? In DIEGO?! You sure? Cuz we don’t do that around here”
Also if you ever suspect that your vehicle may have been towed unlawfully, check the letter of the law itself as posted by the T&T Police Service on Facebook:
The Trinidad and Tobago Police service wishes to remind the public that the role of the Police is to enforce all applicable laws of Trinidad and Tobago. Under the law governing traffic violations, Police Officers are authorised to take certain action against persons in cases of a breach.
In this regard, the public is hereby reminded, that if a vehicle is parked in contravention of traffic signs; and obstructs the visibility or free flow of traffic, this can lead to a safety hazard and the Police is authorised to have the vehicle removed/towed.
As it relates to the wrecking of vehicles, the law is quite clear on the circumstances under which a vehicle can be wrecked.
Section 108 – (1) of the Motor Vehicle and Road Traffic Act Chapter 48:50 refer:
Where a vehicle is parked in contravention of any provisions of the Road Traffic Act 48:50 or any Regulations, example, where there is a breach of a No parking sign, or Orders made thereunder, or is left on any road in a manner that it is likely to cause any obstruction to persons lawfully using any such road, any member of the Police Service may:
- Require the driver or other person in control or in charge thereof, to remove it or cause it to be removed, and any person who fails to comply with any such requirement is liable to a fine of three hundred dollars or to imprisonment for three months
The law further states:
- If the driver or other person in control or in charge of such vehicle cannot be found or refuses to remove the vehicle when required to do so, the Police is authorised to remove such vehicle or arrange for it to be removed from the place in which it is parked, to a place of safe custody, either by towing or driving the vehicle or in such other manner, as he may think necessary.
Before a vehicle is removed for a breach of any traffic law , Operational Procedures of the TTPS, require the Police Officer to:
(i) Make brief enquiries in the immediate vicinity in an effort to locate the driver; this of course, is within a reasonable time and distance.
(ii) If the driver is not found, the Police officer can have the vehicle towed to a designated area.
(iii) If the driver is found, the officer can prefer the relevant charge(s) against the driver for the offence committed and request that the vehicle be removed. If the driver refuses, the vehicle can be impounded.
Where a vehicle has been “hooked up or is in the actual process of being hooked up” to a wrecker, but the vehicle has not been removed, from where it was parked; and the driver or person in control of the vehicle simultaneously appears and claims the vehicle, the police officer shall:
(i) Release the vehicle to the driver or person claiming the vehicle;
(ii) Issue a ticket(s) for the offence(s) committed; or
(iii) Prosecute the driver or person in charge of the vehicle for any offences detected.
The TTPS has noted with concern the unacceptable practice of persons, who have parked their vehicles in contravention of traffic signs or regulations; and where the Police proceed to have the said vehicle towed, the driver resorting to entering the vehicle, whilst the Police are in the lawful execution of their duty; and whilst the vehicle is in motion.
This practice can result in serious injury to persons; and may amount to the offence of, Obstructing a Police Officer whilst in the execution of his duty, according to Section 59 of the Police Service Act 2006(As amended). Persons found in contravention of the law where this is concerned, are liable, on summary conviction, to a fine of $10,000.00 and to imprisonment of 2 years.
Section 4(1) of the Criminal Law act 10:04 authorises a person ‘to use such force as is reasonable, in the circumstances, in the prevention of crime, or in effecting or assisting in the lawful arrest of offenders or suspected offenders or of persons unlawfully at large.
If on the other hand, Police Officers whilst in the execution of their duties are perceived to have abused their authority or to have used excessive force, than is necessary in the circumstances, persons are therefore advised of their right to immediately lodge a report and the matter would be thoroughly investigated.
Again, we are kindly asking members of the public to co-operate with us in ensuring that we make every place in Trinidad and Tobago safe.
Aquille is a Creative Content Associate at F1RST.com, also known as the Research Banton. Being awarded with the F1RST Swiss Army Knife award, Aquille has worked and excelled in almost every field in the company thus far. He has an affinity for photography, social media and creative direction. Follow him on Instagram: @aquilleali