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Tow truck vehicle licence

The holder of a tow truck licence is authorised to operate a tow truck business within the tow truck licensing scheme.

A tow truck must be a licensed tow truck if you tow motor vehicles from the scene of a crash, from a private property parking area or from a police seizure in regulated areas of Queensland. To licence your tow truck you need to complete the Tow Truck Licence Application form (F4644) and pay a tow truck licence fee (per vehicle)

On this page:

How to become a tow truck licence holder

More information about becoming a tow truck licence holder such as licence holder obligations, requirements for approved premises and holding yards, authority to tow, towing consent and auditing of licence holders can be found on the tow truck licence holder page.

Maintenance of tow trucks

A licensed tow truck must be maintained as required under the Transport Operations (Road Use Management-Vehicle Standards and Safety) Regulation 2010 and if the gross vehicle mass is over 4.5 tonne the tow truck must be maintained as required under the Heavy Vehicle (Vehicle Standards) National Regulation.

Tow truck markings

A licensed tow truck must have markings on both sides of the tow truck that display the:

  • name, business address and telephone number of the licence holder 
  • classification of the tow truck 
  • licence number of the tow truck 
  • Tow Truck Number.

For further information on tow truck specifications, requirements and markings to be placed on a tow truck see Schedule 1 of the Tow Truck Regulation 2009.

All tow trucks licensed to attend incidents, tow police seizures and to tow vehicles from private property must be registered in Queensland.

Tow truck licence costs

Application fees for a tow truck licence must be paid when the application is lodged.

Tow truck licence length

Tow truck licences are issued for up to 5 years. The expiry date is displayed on the front of the licence.

Trade work

A licensed tow truck may be used for trade work (e.g. attending breakdowns and trade tows) and the driver of that vehicle does not need to be an accredited tow truck driver. However, once a licensed tow truck attends an incident, a police seizure or attends private property to tow a vehicle parked on the property within a regulated area, the driver of the vehicle must hold a current tow truck driver certificate.

Towing an unregistered vehicle

A tow truck is permitted to tow an unregistered vehicle under Section 4 of the Transport Operations (Road Use Management-Vehicle Registration) Regulation 2010. There is no need to obtain an unregistered vehicle permit. If a tow truck is to tow an unregistered vehicle, the tow truck's rear number plate should be removed and attached to the rear of the unregistered vehicle. Alternatively, an accessory plate issued to the tow truck, may be attached to the rear of the unregistered vehicle in accordance with Section 38 of the Transport Operations (Road Use Management-Vehicle Registration) Regulation 2010.

The Tow Truck Act 1973, Transport Operations (Road Use Management-Vehicle Standards and Safety) Regulation 2010, Transport Operations (Road Use Management-Vehicle Registration) Regulation 2010, Tow Truck Regulation 2009, Police Powers and Responsibilities Act 2000 and Heavy Vehicle (Vehicle Standards) National Regulation legislation can be found on the Office of the Queensland Parliamentary Counsel website.

Last updated
20 March 2020