We were in the establishment for approximately an hour.
When we came back, my brand new 2014 Dodge Caravan was gone. We searched, and found a sign giving a number of a towing company. We called and they had our van.
The company tows cars in Provo under 3 names; KPE Towing, Express Towing, and Amber's Towing.
Now I'm not going to lie. The whole interaction with the people of the company was really awful. They were extremely rude to both me, the friend who had been with me, and the friend who came to save us. They refused to show us the contract that gave them the right to tow vehicles. Especially with a newly enacted ruling enacted by the Provo mayor to try and prevent this type of thing from happening. Ultimately, I paid the $200 and took my van.
But it wasn't about that interaction. This is about what we found out had happened unbeknownst to us. And we discovered it on the way home on snow covered streets. We started to slide. I had no control over the car. We quickly got off the freeway, and the danger seemed to be over. But as the weekend continued and into the next week, the problems with control of the care continued.
Now I want to point out I am a widow and mother of 4 children who are all still at home. The thought of what could have happened still terrifies me.
I tried to ignore the problems. I thought maybe I was just imagining things. The final straw however, was the evening of Tuesday February 4th. Driving home from where I work in Salt Lake, I had so little control over the car, I finally pulled of and called my brother to come get me. The next morning I took the van into the dealership where I had originally purchased it just a few months before.
This is what they found.
The rear axle was bent. It had thrown the car out of alignment and affected my ability to keep control of the vehicle. The van was unsafe to drive.
I suspected the damage had been done at some point while it had been in the possession of the towing company, most likely during the process of being towed. But I wanted to be sure. The tech stated that the only other way the damage could have been done was if I had been driving very fast...backwards. And hit something. An adjuster was called in from my insurance company (she is the one that took the pictures), and she stated that the damage was so localized, that had it been something I had done during driving, there would have been far more damage. Even more, because it was this kind of damage, it fell outside of my warranty.
I called the towing company and told them what had been revealed and asked if they would be willing to cover the costs to have it fixed. They refused, claiming that there was not way they could have done any damage because when they tow a car "they only touch the tires".
I want to get the word out. I was willing to be responsible for the mistake I made. I want them to be responsible for their carelessness. I am hoping a little pressure from the public will help make people aware of how these companies bully people, and refuse to take responsibility.