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Removal of Vehicles from Public or Private Property

Several California Vehicle Code sections govern the police department's authority to remove vehicle from the roadway and public property, including:

  • 22651(a) Obstruction of a traffic bridge.
  • 22651(b) Obstruction of traffic on a highway.
  • 22651(d) Obstruction of a private driveway.
  • 22651(e) Obstruction of a fire hydrant, or emergency vehicle.
  • 22651 (i)(1) Parking citations, five or more outstanding.
  • 22651.5(a) Audible vehicle alarm
  • 22652 Illegally parked in a disabled parking zone.
  • 22669 Abandoned vehicles.

Anyone who feels a vehicle may be subject for removal from a highway or public property can notify the police department (714) 741-5704.

When you call please have the location of vehicle, license plate or VIN number, vehicle description and reason you believe the vehicle should be towed. An officer will be dispatched and take appropriate action whether that is to issue a citation or tow the vehicle.

For a copy of the California Vehicle code, please visit the California DMV website at…

Private Property

If an unauthorized vehicle is parked on private property, the California Vehicle Code authorizes the owner of any private lot to, subsequent to notifying the police, cause the removal of a vehicle to the nearest public garage, provided there are properly posted signs at all entrances to the property that prohibits public parking reference Section CVC 22658(a).

Who can cause a vehicle to be removed?

The property owner and any person authorized as the agent of the property owner acting on their behalf. Vehicles illegally parked blocking driveways or designated fire lanes may be towed provided the entrances are properly marked, which includes the name of the tow company on the sign. The property owner or agent need not be present at the scene.


If you cause the removal of a vehicle from private property and the sign requirement has not been met, you could be liable for any towing and or storage charges up to four times the amount.

The Sign

  • Must be a minimum of 17 inches by 22 inches in size.
  • State that the vehicle will be towed at the owner’s expense.
  • Display the telephone number of the police department (714-741-5704)
  • Display the name and number of the tow company authorized to remove the vehicle.

How to remove a vehicle

The owner or agent must contact the Garden Grove Police Departments Records Bureau at 714-741-5719 to clear the vehicle for impound after it is determined it is not stolen, part of a crime, or that of a missing person etc., and provide the following information once the vehicle has been removed.

  • Date and time the vehicle was removed.
  • Tow company name.
  • The address or location where the vehicle was removed.
  • The year, make, model, color of vehicle.
  • The license plate information, e.g. state and number.
  • The Vehicle Identification Number (VIN).

Once the tow company has provided the above information, they will receive a private property impound number from the Records Bureau.