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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 licensed tow truck within the definition of the Tow Truck Act 1973 is a motor vehicle that is equipped with a lifting or loading device capable of being used for the towing of a motor vehicle or used at the material time for the towing of a trailer on which a damaged or seized motor vehicle is being carried (i.e. seized vehicle is a motor vehicle seized by police under the Police Powers and Responsibilities Act 2000).

For your tow truck to be defined as a 'licensed tow truck' you need to complete the Tow Truck Licence Application form (F4644) and pay a tow truck licence fee (per vehicle) that is linked to the licence.

A licensed tow truck must be maintained as required under the Transport Operations (Road Use Management-Vehicle Standards and Safety) Regulation 2010.

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 or towing permit holder
  • classification of the tow truck
  • licence or permit 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 or tow police seizures must be registered in Queensland.

Trade work

A licensed tow truck may be used for trade work (e.g. attending breakdowns) and the driver of that vehicle does not need to be a certified tow truck driver. However, once a licensed tow truck attends an incident, 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 regulation.

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

Last updated
13 November 2017