Impound TraQ is designed to simplify and eliminate paper in the process of keeping track impounded vehicles from the point of seizure to return to owner or auction sale. It fits agencies which contract with commercial towing companies to manage storage lots or whether they run their own storage facilities. This information permits authorized users to calculate charges and record payments, if towed to an agency yard. If delivered to a contract towing and storage company, the software allows an agency to audit towing company response times, records that operators or lien holders were properly identified and contacted, and all of this without paper.
Impounded vehicles towed under police orders require careful tracking to assure proper handling by both the officer and the towing company, much less an agency storage yard. Whether parked illegally, damaged in an accident, seized as a result of an arrest, or because the driver was intoxicated, officers follow similar procedures to determine vehicle ownership, which they enter in their report. What happens thereafter varies depending on where the vehicle is towed. Commercial companies may handle all dealing with the driver or owner, and the agency role may be no more than auditing chares.
For purposes of tracking, the officer then fills in a form with nearly the same data adding information about the tow truck operator. A copy of the report is turned in, so that dispatch can formally notify the owner, if the officer could not, and answer citizen calls from the public about missing vehicles. Another may go to the impound yard (public or private) to provide the basic information needed to assess charges when the vehicle is retrieved. If towed and stored by a contractor, that company reports charges to the agency to audit conformity to the contract terms. If towed to an agency lot, the form will be used to compute the charges. Other sets of forms and spreadsheets keep track of charges to owners, payments to tow companies, and deposits to the bank or the jurisdiction’s treasury. The process is slow, paper-driven, disjointed, time consuming, and error prone.
QueTel’s Impound TraQ, automates the process from the laptop in the cruiser to its return to the owner or, if not claimed, to its sale or destruction. Inquiries about the status of a car are more quickly satisfied, because the data is available as soon as entered. Records can begin the process of notifying owners, when the officer could not. The system sends the information for its billing to the tow company automatically. If the impound yard is run by the agency the system keeps track of towing charges and storage costs, and collects them together with any fines to be paid. Automating the process eliminates paper and filing, saves time in answering questions. With the wealth of data in it, users can generate ad-hoc reports and other management statistics.