A-1’s banned from booting and towing semi trucks in Memphis, Tennessee until after Christmas, declared a Memphis committee.
The Memphis, Tennessee Transportation Commission has suspended the permits of the infamous A-1’s Towing and Hauling, banning them from booting and towing rigs until after Christmas. The decision was reached at a hearing on Wednesday, November 29th, and will remain in place until December 29th. The action comes after nearly two dozen truckers and trucking companies submitted complaints about potentially illegal towing and booting of their rigs with excessive fees since fall of last year.
Since Wednesday’s hearing, an attorney for A-1’s says that the hearing was procedurally flawed, and his client will soon appeal the ruling.
“The Memphis Transportation Commission acted in violation of Section 6-46-3(B) of the Memphis Transportation Commission Ordinance, and they violated my client’s due process rights as contemplated by the Contested Hearing proceedings,” said attorney Darrell O’neal.
A-1’s booting license was also temporarily suspended for 60 days in Arkansas back in September after the Arkansas Towing and Recovery Board received several complaints from drivers claiming they had been illegally booted and towed from the same truck stop in West Memphis, Arkansas. By October, the Tennessee Attorney General’s office had also received nearly a dozen complaints against the company, and the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security was helping the Memphis Police to investigate A-1’s actions, reported WREG.
Although some of the affected drivers and trucking companies say that they are relieved action is finally being taken, they do not believe that a 30 day suspension will change A-1’s ways.
“I don’t think this company is going to clean up its act in 30 days and start acting like a legitimate towing company should,” said Fenn Church, owner of a trucking company in Alabama who had to pay more than $17,500 to retrieve two of his rigs taken by A-1’s.
Church says he has attempted to get his money back, but hasn’t seen any refunds yet. He also says he and a few other trucking companies are working to file a class action lawsuit against A-1’s.
“Getting money out of them is probably going to be extremely difficult,” he said, adding that he won’t rest until he puts the towing company out of business. For now, he says he drivers will be passing through Memphis, but will not be stopping for any reason.
“Our industry has enough stress as it is right now with the economy in the shape that it is in right now. We are probably going through one of the slowest revenue periods of my company in 23 years,” said Church. “The whole industry is feeling it, and then you got leeches in our system like these operators.”
A-1’s has always and continues to claim no wrongdoing, and says they have not violated any booting or towing ordinances. The Memphis City Council is expected to discuss alleged abuses by towing companies across the city at one of its upcoming meetings.