• Posted On: December 01, 2015

Finding Ways to Curb the Costs of Abandoned Vehicle Management

When cars break down on public thoroughfares and are left behind for days, weeks or longer, they become an eyesore, a public nuisance and even a danger. Abandoned vehicle management is one of the many functions of local government, but it is one that can be hard to stay on top of and one whose costs can easily become burdensome. Is there a way to handle derelict, non-functioning or abandoned vehicles that is more effective and budget-friendly?

Depending upon the size of your community you may have public agents tasked specifically with abandoned vehicle management or it may be a duty assigned to officers who already carry out several other public service functions. Whatever the case, few locales can afford to pay agents to drive around town looking for automobiles overstaying their welcome.

The first question is whether the car is merely parked or has been abandoned. Maybe your city has a 24-hour policy which states that parked cars cannot be left in public spaces for over 24 hours. It’s a good policy, but it is only as effective as the power to enforce it. Rather than discovering over-parked cars and trucks, abandoned vehicle management often relies on public complaints. In a metropolis the size of Seattle, the city handles 2,000 – 3,000 abandoned vehicle complaints each month.

Once abandoned vehicles are identified, the majority will be removed by the owner after he or she receives an official warning notice from the public agent. Of course, not all municipalities issue an initial warning. Some ticket the vehicle immediately. However it is initially handled, after a set amount of time with no owner response, the vehicle will need to be towed. This usually costs the city a lot and oftentimes the vehicle may not be worth as much as the expense of having it towed.

What you need is a way to get a handle on the costs of abandoned vehicle management. A solution is available to help you do just that. Comcate’s Municipal Code software provides a simple-to-use tool to better manage the problem of abandoned vehicles. The tool goes with your public agent and performs a handful of functions – all on-site and with full reporting and record-keeping capability.

With our tool agents can store photo images of vehicles, tags and plates. They can keep track of case progress, court action and follow-up needs according to date. The tool provides a valuable mapping function. It will also keep accurate records of the agent’s travel, time, expenses and other costs. All of this information is automatically compiled into regular (monthly, quarterly, annual) financial printouts that track expenses and provide useful statistics.

If you are finding that abandoned vehicle management is a time consuming and costly service that is always falling behind, contact us and find out how technology can help bring costs into line while improving your ability to respond. Comcate offers a full line of digital tools to help you serve your community smarter and better.

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