News Release News Release The City of Palo Alto
Communications Department
250 Hamilton Ave
Palo Alto, CA 94301


Subject :

Officers to Tow Vehicles for Sale on State Routes
Contact : Steve Herrera, Sergeant, Palo Alto Police Department    650-329-2683
Palo Alto, CA. - Senate Bill (SB) 279 has been in effect for several years and originally allowed California Highway Patrol officers only, to tow vehicles for sale parked on state highways.   Recently, Governor Schwarzenegger signed the bill allowing local police officers the ability to cite and tow those same vehicles.  The sale of vehicles or other items on state highways is unlawful, but more importantly, unsafe.  The law had not originally given local peace officers the right to enforce this law.  This had become a problem in Palo Alto as well as surrounding cities in our area.  Numerous vehicles for sale are routinely parked along El Camino Real which is State Route 82.  Vehicles parked along the curb have caused safety issues and have become a public nuisance.  Potential owners frequently put themselves and others in harms way as they look over vehicles parked along the roadway which is posted at 35 miles per hour.  Other solutions to this problem have failed including painting curbs red and issuing parking tickets.

As of January 1st, 2008, SB279 will become law and Palo Alto Police officers will begin towing vehicles parked along El Camino Real, which have "For Sale" signs posted on them.  This also includes vehicles with a simple telephone number for contact.  Vehicles currently parked along the curb have been posted with warning notices over the past several weeks informing owners of the new law. Vehicles legitimately parked along the curb will not be cited or towed.  For questions pertaining to this enforcement action, please contact Sergeant Steve Herrera at (650) 329-2683.