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COURT OF APPEAL, FOURTH APPELLATE DISTRICT - page 21 / 29

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various situations which call for 'vehicle transportation by a tow truck . . . without the prior consent or authorization of the owner . . . .' "  Plaintiff further maintains the trial court's ruling ignores the definition of "transportation" intended to apply to the FAAAA as including storage services.

Viewing it in context of the entire scheme, we agree that section 22658, subdivision (i)(2) is a regulation relating to the price of tow truck "transportation," as that term is broadly defined in the FAAAA, performed without the vehicle owner's prior written consent or authorization.  The statutory definition of the FAAAA explicitly broadens "transportation" to include storage related to the movement of property (49 U.S.C. § 13102(21)(B)), which has been held to encompass tow truck storage facilities.  (Ace Auto Body & Towing, Ltd. v. City of New York, supra, 171 F.3d at p. 771.)  Further, the regulatory scheme set out in section 22658 in general is plainly directed at regulating nonconsensual tows.  It requires the person causing removal of the vehicle to provide notice in writing to the registered or legal owner of the vehicle of the "fact of the removal, the grounds for the removal, and . . . the place to which the vehicle has been removed."  (§ 22658, subd. (b).)  As the court in Servantes explained, the scheme set forth in section 22658 further requires the private property owner to notify the police before causing a vehicle to be towed and the towing company to obtain the written authorization of the property owner (§§ 22658, subds. (a), (l)), and it obligates the storage facility to accept a credit card for payment of the towing and storage charges (§ 22658, subd. (k)), thus "expedit[ing] recovery of the involuntarily towed vehicle."  

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