Can my Toyota 4Runner be towed due to frame rust corrosion?

By Treven Pyles

Posted on August 24th, 2021

There are numerous reasons why a vehicle can be towed, such as when it is deemed a traffic hazard because it blocks a lane or intersection or because it obstructs the flow of traffic in any other way. However, if you own a Toyota 4Runner with excessive frame rust corrosion, you may wonder if the authorities have the right to tow it.

Towing a car means removing it with the help of a truck because it represents a danger to traffic, because it ceased working properly, or because it is parked illegally. Nevertheless, these are the most common reasons why a car may be towed from public property, and there are many more. When it comes to private property, it is important to know that authorities have the right to tow your car as well under specific circumstances. Consequently, if you are the owner of a Toyota 4Runner whose frame is excessively affected by rust corrosion, you probably want to know how to prevent your car from being towed.

Why your defective Toyota 4Runner may be towed

In general, if your Toyota 4Runner, whether it has rust corrosion on the frame or not, is parked on a residential property that has proper signage posted, it can be towed. However, there is a requirement concerning the sign, namely that it must be placed near the entrance of the lot in a visible area. On the other hand, if your vehicle is parked for more than 24 hours in a private, non-residential area that does not display a sign, you can have it towed for a wide range of reasons. If you have a 4Runner that you can no longer drive as a consequence of severe rust corrosion on the frame, you should avoid leaving it in these places and also avoid the following situations in order for it not to be towed:

  • parking it in a spot that is blocking a fire hydrant, on ambulance loading areas, or in a place designated for people with disabilities
  • parking it in a place that will obstruct traffic
  • parking it on the spot marked as "tow zone"
  • parking it somewhere where it can be seen if you have accumulated unpaid parking tickets
  • parking it outside of your residence if you have a violation of your driver's license, such as being unlicensed or having a suspended license
  • abandoning your car if it stopped working for 72 hours or more in a public area
  • parking it wrongly as a result of a snow emergency

Nonetheless, any vehicle in one of the situations above may be towed, regardless of whether it is functional. If authorities notice that your Toyota 4Runner with severe frame rust corrosion is parked illegally, they will have to perform the towing with a series of precautions, as your car may fall apart during the regular process as a result of the extensive damage of the undercarriage. Accordingly, if the drivetrain of your vehicle is rusted, your 4Runner will be dragged along the road by the tow truck instead of being rolled. Furthermore, the towing company will also ensure that the components of your 4Runner that have become affected by rust and that might fall off will be properly secured before moving your vehicle.

Can my 4Runner be towed specifically for excessive rust corrosion on the frame?

Yes. If you have your residence in a state with mandatory annual or biennial safety vehicle inspections, and your Toyota 4Runner has miraculously passed the test despite severe rust corrosion on the frame, the authorities can stop you while you are driving it and demand you remove your license plates and have your automobile towed for this exact reason. Therefore, the only way to avoid towing is to keep a close eye on your 4Runner if it belongs to the fourth generation and, as soon as your mechanic advises you to stop driving it, to follow their directions. If you ceased driving it, it is best to keep it in your garage or anywhere that is not visible until you solve the issue of frame rust corrosion.

Our advice if your Toyota 4Runner has this awful manufacturing defect is to file a claim with the company, as replacing the frame of your vehicle will cost you $15,000 or even more. Since Toyota Motor Corporation was negligent when making 4Runners between 2003 and 2009, the premature rusting of the frame of your car is not your fault, and the company must thereby be held liable. We will help you file a product liability claim with minimal involvement on your part, which will result in Toyota replacing the damaged frame of your car free of charge. In the unfortunate event that this issue has led to a car accident, you will also obtain compensation for your current and future medical expenses and lost wages.

Quality legal assistance for owners of defective Toyota 4Runners

For more than 25 years, our resourceful legal team has been offering assistance to wronged individuals and communities, whether their health was affected by toxic exposure or their finances were drained by using defective products. Our attorneys specialize both in personal injury and in product liability, which deems them perfectly fit to handle the claims of 4Runner owners. The first step you have to take to initiate the legal process is to give our legal team a call or to fill out the form on our main Toyota page.

Afterward, we will let you know what documents you will need to send our lawyers via e-mail so that they can start preparing your claim for submission. In the meantime, our legal experts will do in-depth research to gather additional evidence for your claim. No matter how intricate your case is, we are ready to take it on and eventually recover the greatest sum of money you qualify for. Lastly, it is worthy of note that our law firm works on a contingency fee basis, meaning that you will not have to pay us anything unless compensation is recovered for you.