Posts Tagged ‘autoreturn’

The Great Restriping of Oak Street Near Masonic is Now Complete – Let’s Hope for Less Congestion

Wednesday, August 26th, 2015


Here’s how she looks with the new striping:

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The leftmost lane allows drivers to turn left or go straight – this seems like a mistake to me, but, then again, lots of things the SFMTA does seem like a mistake.

To me.

Haight Ashbury’s Urban School Has Done All It Could to Keep Motorists from Parking in This Towaway Zone on Oak

Tuesday, August 25th, 2015

That’s the update regarding this sitch on Oak betwixt Masonic and Ashbury.


The big issue was notice, but notice has been achieved.

Three cheers.

Next comes the lane restriping…

Here’s Why the Rich “Urban School” Should Wait Until Monday to Start Towing Cars Off of Oak near Masonic

Friday, August 21st, 2015

Here’s the situation, via Camden Avery of Hoodline.

And here’s how things looked yesterday, with people continuing to park on the north side of Oak between Ashbury and Masonic, right aside the new NO STOPPING ANY TIME towaway signs. At first I thought the whole block was affected, but really it’s only about 75% of the block. This light pole is the demarcation line:

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Boy, I wouldn’t have the stones to park a car right next to these signs. (A ticket and tow from DPT / SFMTA / MUNI / AutoTakeaway AutoReturn will run you something like $700-$1000, depending on how soon you start the process of getting your ride back.)

But also, if I were running the Urban High School (tuition > $40k per year) I would take effort to ensure actual notice to the people who park here. Of course, the new signs give notice, but human nature being what it is, why not do a little more, Urban School?

That would mean, instead of taking action today, waiting a few days and then putting out sawhorses or posts with signs next to Oak Street in the Panhandle, ala the annual Bay to Breakers Community Party and Fun-Run – let’s do that on Sunday night.

And then, after the streetsweepers sweep through as they do almost every Monday morning, you could put a few cones out there, so drivers won’t be able to miss the signage.

So sure, you’ve put notes under windshields, but that doesn’t really cut it. (You gotta assume that the owners of these cars could be ex-cons with addiction issues.)

What’s that Urban School, it’s not you actually towing away cars? Oh yes it is. All this activity from PLANT and SFGov is for your new building, right?

But fine, do what you want, and then your rep in the hood will start approaching that of the SFMTA’s rep, and that’s no place you want to be.

San Francisco’s AutoReturn Monopoly Should be Called AutoTakeaway, Cause That’s All I Ever See Them Doing – Photo

Thursday, July 2nd, 2015

Seen here being towed backwards up Oak and then up Clayton. One assumes this front wheel drive car has a dolly attached:

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Anyway, this is how I see Autoreturn – they don’t really return cars as much as take them away.

Hey look the new SCHEDULE OF FEES, effective yesterday. What’s really out of whack here is the “Administrative Fee” of $266. This is how our inefficient, money-hungry SFMTA earns its money – by charging a fee on top of the money it already makes on the cars it tickets and has towed. Is this the highest administrative fee charged of all of America’s 3000-some odd counties? Yep. Why’s that? Well, it’s to pay the salaries of the Parking Control Officers that the SFMTA already makes money off of, oh well.

Here’s Spencer Brown’s recent experience with AR. But, as stated, the real profiteer here is the inefficient, money-hungry SFMTA.

SF ought to kill this fee entirely.

Nike is Going to Tow Your Car This Saturday Night If You’ve Parked on Certain Blocks of Gough, GG, Webster, Fulton, Scott, Fell…

Friday, October 17th, 2014

I’ve already made this post, but I’ve just come across the route map for 2014’s Nike Women’s Half Marathon, and if this tiny blog can prevent just one unnecessary tow-job this weekend, well that’s blogesse oblige, mon frere.

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If I were Nike, of Beaverton, Oregon, I’d refund the $500-$1000 tow fees that a bunch of San Franciscans are going to be getting come Sunday morning, on a case-by-case basis.

If I were Nike…

All the deets on street closures:


In a Way, the Great Car Towaway of Bay to Breakers 2014 Has Already Begun – Will You Pass This Parking IQ Test?

Friday, May 16th, 2014


Look at these workers throwing signs over parked cars and into Golden Gate Park just yesterday. SFGov is required to give a little notice, so this is how they do it. Is it enough? Well, IDK. It’s certainly not enough for some people. (But think of the poor tow truck drivers who want to rifle through your car for loose change and folding money – they’re sort of people too, right?)

Here’s what the signs say:

So if you see the signs and then make sure to move your car off of Fell or Hayes or all those other streets, you pass the test – cngrats.

But if you parked your car before the towaway signs  went up, well, you’ve been towed and that will run you somewhere between $500-$1000.

Welcome to San Francisco!

SFMTA DPT Graffiti: “GO SUCK A FAT DICK, YOU BITCH-ASS FAGS” – Written on SFGov Denver Boot #E23

Tuesday, December 17th, 2013

The owner of the car pictured below decided not to pay his parking tickets. So, this car sat around collecting tickets until AutoReturn or something similar came along to tow it away, with extreme prejudice.

(Right? Like why pay the SFMTA more than $1000 for a car that’s worth less than $1000…)

But before this car was abandoned forever, its owner made sure to let  the SFMTA know what he thought about the situation. To wit:


Oh, that’s not nice!

Now, let’s check the stinger on the arm:


See? “Moving Forward Together” with the SFMTA:

Click to expand

Too bad Angle Grinder Man doesn’t reside in the 415…

In closing, Don’t Mess With Texas.

Holy Toledo! Official San Francisco Contractor AutoReturn Advertises Bible Verses While Towing Cars in the 415?

Friday, November 9th, 2012

WTF is this? Is this a tow truck towing cars in the Financial under authority of the contract AutoReturn has with SFGov?

I think so!

And yet, in addition to charging you $500 for towing away your ride for being just 13 minutes late, AutoReturn wants to be involved with giving you a lecture from the King James.

Check it: 

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I cry foul.

For the record, PSALM 23:

The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures:
He leadeth me beside the still waters.
He restoreth my soul:
He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for His name’ sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil: For thou art with me;
Thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me.
Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies;
Thou annointest my head with oil; My cup runneth over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the House of the Lord forever.

And then I’ll tow your car.

Sometimes, I just don’t know…

“The colonel’s hostility softened gradually as he applied himself to details. “Now, I want you to give a lot of thought to the kind of prayers we’re going to say. I don’t want anything heavy or sad. I’d like you to keep it light and snappy, something that will send the boys out feeling pretty good. Do you know what I mean? I don’t want any of this Kingdom of God or Valley of Death stuff. That’s all too negative. What are you making such a sour face for?”

“I’m sorry, sir,” the chaplain stammered. “I happened to be thinking of the Twenty-third Psalm just as you said that.”

“How does that one go?”

“That’s the one you were just referring to, sir. ‘The Lord is my shepherd; I—‘”

“That’s the one I was just referring to. It’s out. What else have you got?”

“‘Save me, O God; for the waters are come in unto—‘”

“No waters,” the colonel decided, blowing ruggedly into his cigarette holder after flipping the butt down into his combed-brass ash tray. “Why don’t we try something musical? How about the harps on the willows?”

“That has the rivers of Babylon in it, sir,” the chaplain replied. “‘…there we sat down, yea, we wept, when we remembered Zion.'”

“Zion? Let’s forget about that one right now. I’d like to know how that one ever got in there. Haven’t you got anything humorous that stays away from waters and valleys and God? I’d like to keep away from the subject of religion altogether if we can.”

The chaplain was apologetic. “I’m sorry, sir, but just about all the prayers I know are rather somber in tone and make at least some passing reference to God.”

“Then let’s get some new ones. The men are already doing enough bitching about the missions I send them on without our rubbing it in with any sermons about God or death or Paradise. Why can’t we take a more positive approach? Why can’t we all pray for something good, like a tighter bomb pattern, for example? Couldn’t we pray for a tighter bomb pattern?”

“Well, yes, sir, I suppose so,” the chaplain answered hesitantly. “You wouldn’t even need me if that’s all you wanted to do. You could do that yourself.”

“I know I could,” the colonel responded tartly. “But what do you think you’re here for? I could shop for my own food, too, but that’s Milo’s job, and that’s why he’s doing it for every group in the area. Your job is to lead us in prayer, and from now on you’re going to lead us in a prayer for a tighter bomb pattern before every mission. Is that clear? I think a tighter bomb pattern is something really worth praying for. It will be a feather in all our caps with General Peckem. General Peckem feels it makes a much nicer aerial photograph when the bombs explode close together.”

When the SFMTA Puts a “Denver Boot” on Your Car, Feel Free to Reply With an Obscene Message, Like This One

Monday, August 20th, 2012

This car isn’t going to be rescued by its owner. This car is going to sit around collecting tickets until AutoReturn or something similar comes along to tow it away, with extreme prejudice.

(Right? Like why pay the SFMTA more than $1000 for a car worth less than $1000…)

But before you abandon your ride forever, be sure to let the SFMTA know what you think about it. To wit:


Oh, that’s not nice!

Now, let’s check the stinger on the arm:


See? “Moving Forward Together” with the SFMTA:

Click to expand

Too bad Angle Grinder Man doesn’t reside in the 415…

In closing, Don’t Mess With Texas.

Another Salvo Against that “AutoReturn” Towing Company from One of Its “Victims,” Writer CW Nevius

Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

Here’s the latest anti-Auto Return bit from CW Nevius.

I don’t know, Neve, what do you want? It sounds like you want the City Family to fight harder for the Commonweal, to make better deals when it deals with private companies.

And that’s fine, but you’re a little inconsistent, you dig?

Speaking of digging, what about the corrupt Central Subway project? The last you wrote about that was all the way back in 2008. Why is it that you write about little fish like Auto Return but not big fish like, I don’t know, AECOM?

Oh what’s that, you actually think the Central Subway is a horrible execution of a bad idea but you don’t want to offend all your sources in the City Family? That’s pretty weak, Neve.

Or what about the America’s Cup boondoggle that you used to cheer lead for so much. Didn’t The City strike a bad deal with AC34?

And what about Recology? You seem to support that expensive monopoly and its dealings.

But that’s small potatoes compared with the deal San Francisco made with Auto Return?

What do you want, you want to get rid of the AutoReturn contract and then hire a bunch of expensive new City employees to tow cars? I guarantee you that that would cost SF more money.

Or maybe you want tow fees to be increased overall in order to subsidize police tows?

Or maybe you want revenge against the company what towed your ride last year, you know, when you were a naive newcomer in the 415?

I think that’s it!

We’ve made a lot of progress today, CW. Leave your check with my secretary on the way out…

Ah, mem’ries:

The Biggest Mistake That AutoReturn Towing Company Ever Made was Towing C.W. Nevius Earlier This Year

Right? ‘Cause after the car of C.W. Nevius got towed in February, he stepped up his campaign against AutoReturn, the company what gets called by DPT / SFMTA when your car is blocking rush hour traffic.

So nowadays, he considers San Francisco’s policy of towing away cars blocking rush hour lanes a “scam,” which means he thinks the whole process is a “fraudulent business scheme.”

Does he think that the SFMTA should just leave cars untouched, making all those “NO STOPPING, NO PARKING” signs merely advisory?

It’s not clear.

Oh well.

AutoReturn: Our name makes us sound like we’re a department of the SFPD – isn’t that funny? WERE UNDER UR FREEWAY, DETAINING UR CARZ:

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Now, what the Auto Return tow truck driver should have done was make up some excuse instead of towing the ride of The Nevius on that Fateful Day. You know, “technical difficulties” or something like that to buy some more time for the San Francisco Chronicle’s least intelligent employee. That would have allowed the Neve to correct his mistake by simply hopping in and driving off to the East Bay or wherever the hell he lives these days.

It wouldn’t be hard to implement a NO TOW NEVIUS policy. You know, back in the day, Willie Brown used to get pulled over all the time by the CHP when he was driving waaaaay too fast* on the I-80 back and forth to Sacramento. After Willie got stopped twice in one trip, he put a hold on the CHP’s budget. So the CHP issued Willie’s photo to all the officers on I-80 with instructions to “memorize this face” in order to give Willie favorable treatment. (Read the whole story below.) The point is that AutoReturn should find which cars CW Nevius parks illegally on the Streets of San Francisco and then give a picture of each one to all their tow truck drivers and then tell them“DO NOT TOW THESE PARTICULAR CARS!”

Bingo bango.

“From UC Press E-Books Collection, 1982-2004 (formerly eScholarship Editions), it’s: 

Willie Brown, A Biography by James Richardson

From four decades ago, Chapter 15, Mr. Chairman:

“One afternoon Brown briskly walked into a budget conference committee meeting late and looking angry. He immediately sat down next to [Senator] Collier and asked for a “point of personal privilege.” Collier granted him the courtesy, and Brown asked to return to an item in the budget to appropriate funds to purchase guns and other equipment for the California Highway Patrol. Brown then demanded that the funds be deleted from the budget. The trust between the two was so great that Collier asked no questions, immediately complied, and struck the CHP equipment appropriation.

At the end of the meeting, [aide Robert] Connelly asked his boss what was going on with the Highway  Patrol. “He was so mad, he wouldn’t talk about it.” Finally, Brown told Connelly that he had been stopped not once but twice by CHP officers that day on his way to Sacramento from San Francisco along Interstate 80 in his bright red Porsche. Each time, the officers walked over to Brown and said, “Hey, boy, where’d you get this car?”

Connelly quickly found the CHP’s lobbyist and told him what had happened. “The guy’s eyeballs rolled clear back into his skull. He said, ‘We’ll fix it.’” By the next morning, the CHP was distributing photographs of Willie Brown to officers along the Interstate 80 corridor between San Francisco and Sacramento with orders to “memorize this face.” The CHP got its appropriation back—and more.

Brown championed pay raises for CHP officers by authoring a bill that tied their salaries to a formula based on the salaries of large municipal police forces. The measure gave Highway Patrol officers a windfall raise, and then an automatic pay raise every time one of the unionized city forces got a new contract.”

*You’d see him go past as a red blur, hauling ass. He had a Porsche 911, a Mazda Miata (sold to him at a discount, you know, cause Willie is special), an Acura NSX (sold to him at a discount, per the instructions of Honda USA, you know, because Willie is special), and others.