Seattle announces plan to impound vehicles out of compliance with newly enforced 72-hour parking law

May 16, 2022, 6:05 AM | Updated: 6:07 am


RVs and tents in Ballard in November 2021. (KTTH, Jason Rantz)

(KTTH, Jason Rantz)

Vehicles that remain in place for more than 72 consecutive hours will now be subject to a tow, courtesy of the City of Seattle.

Friday, the Seattle Department of Transportation announced that full parking enforcement had resumed, ending a pandemic-era moratorium on the 72-hour parking law.

Seattle’s 72-hour parking law prompts push for RV safe lot

In a news release, SDOT notes that “Public streets are not an appropriate place for long-term vehicle storage.”

Seattle Public Utilities leads the “RV Remediation” program. SPU performs multiple, monthly site assessments of city areas with five or more RVs in one location “prioritized for cleanup,” according to a spokesperson with SPU.

Up until now, the city has avoided impounding RVs out of compliance with the 72-hour parking law.

Official notice of remediation will be posted at least three days before removal. If it appears that people may be living in one of the vehicles, they will receive information about assistance, support services, and resources.

A spokesperson with SPU declined to provide further information as to the kind of services available. They confirmed that the “Seattle Police Department could potentially assist with enforcement in certain situations. This would depend on the circumstances. Our hope is that people will move their vehicles after receiving a notice and warning.”

If a car is towed from a public street, instructions to locate the vehicle and documents required to release your vehicle are available online. The first step to find and reclaim your vehicle is to call Lincoln Towing at 206-364-2000 or search for your vehicle on Lincoln Towing’s website.

If your car was towed from a private parking lot, look for posted signs with instructions and a phone number for the tow company which operates the lot. If you still cannot locate your vehicle, call the Community Safety and Communications Center at 206-625-5011.

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Seattle announces plan to impound vehicles out of compliance with newly enforced 72-hour parking law