Sun. Jun 16th, 2024

(a) Any peace officer who finds a motor vehicle which has been left unattended on a highway for more than five days, as evidenced by the date on an unattended vehicle check card, may cause such motor vehicle to be removed to a garage or other place of safety.

(b) Any peace officer who finds a motor vehicle which has been left unattended on a highway and which poses an immediate threat to public health or safety or traffic congestion may cause such motor vehicle to be removed to a garage or other place of safety. Within 24 hours of causing an unattended motor vehicle to be removed pursuant to this subsection, the peace officer shall query the criminal justice information system to determine if the unattended motor vehicle has been entered into the criminal justice information system as a stolen vehicle. If a removed vehicle has been reported as stolen, the peace officer shall place a phone call to the law enforcement agency that filed such report, providing the name and address of the towing and storage firm that removed the motor vehicle. The law enforcement agency receiving such phone call shall notify the owner of the vehicle of the location of the motor vehicle.

(c) Any peace officer who causes an unattended motor vehicle to be removed pursuant to this Code section shall be liable only for gross negligence.

(d) A towing and storage firm that has removed an unattended motor vehicle from public property at the request of a peace officer shall, within three days of the removal, request from the department the identification and addresses of all owners of such vehicle contained in the records of the department; provided, however, that if such vehicle has an out-of-state license plate, such request shall be made to the state where the vehicle is registered or to an entity with access to such states vehicle registration information. The department shall furnish the requested owner information no later than five days from the date the request was received. The department may charge a fee of no more than $2.00 for such owner information. For purposes of this subsection, an unattended motor vehicle shall include a motor vehicle required to be moved due to arrest of the vehicles operator or any direction of a peace officer.

(e) Failure of a peace officer to comply with any provision of this Code section shall not limit the remedies available to any person pursuant to this article.