Calling a tow truck

Tow trucks are dispatched to road crashes in Adelaide through a centralised operator so that only one tow truck attends to each incident.

Tow trucks are not controlled outside of the greater metropolitan area of Adelaide because there are fewer operators available to attend to crashes.

How to call a tow truck in the Adelaide metropolitan area

Phone 8116 9209 - this number is managed by police.

You will need to advise:

  • the exact location of the crash
  • the make, model and registration number of the car
  • if the vehicle has been moved.

The operator will dispatch the next available tow truck and provide you with the approximate time that it will arrive and the name of the tow truck operator.

Your rights and responsibilities

You choose where the tow truck takes your vehicle

You do not have to agree to your vehicle being taken to any place other than where you choose - even if you do not have money to pay the operator on the spot.

Sign the authority to tow documents provided by the operator

By law, the tow truck driver must give you an 'authority to tow' form to sign before your vehicle can be towed away. Make sure that you check the information carefully before you sign the form.

All fees must be paid in full before you can collect your vehicle

The owner of the vehicle is responsible for paying all lawful fees claimed for rescue and towing of a vehicle from an accident.

Fees include:

  • a tow fee - determined by the time and day and may include a per kilometre charge if the tow truck's round trip from its depot is greater than 20 km.
  • an amount for waiting and working time of more than 30 minutes while the tow truck is at the accident scene
  • charges for additional rescue equipment and vehicle storage at the tow truck operator's place of business.

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Page last updated 2 July 2019

Provided by:
Department for Infrastructure and Transport
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