Tow truck drivers will be required take photographs before towing vehicles, under a broad revision of rules adopted Tuesday by Fairfax County’s Board of Supervisors to regulate trespass towing.


County officials also characterized the revisions as a benefit for consumer protection. Reflective red-on-white signs the size of standard “No Parking” signs will to be posted at the front of restricted areas. Tow operators will have to take snapshots clearly showing the reason for the tow and the vehicle’s condition before connecting to the vehicle for its removal.

Towing operators also must obtain a signature from the property owner or the owner’s agent before every tow to ensure there is a paper trail.

The new regulations also ensure that motorists can retrieve their vehicles at any time of the day; and pay with cash, credit cards or debit cards. If card devices are inoperable, a personal check must be accepted. Receipts must contain information explaining the reason for the tow, the time of the tow, and any fees assessed by the operator.

Tow operators also must have their own storage lots.

County officials said the new rules have been endorsed by the Tenant-Landlord Commission, the Consumer Protection Commission and the Trespass Towing Advisory Board. The new ordinance takes effect immediately.