Using a truck or tow truck service

Using trucking (goods) services

Trucking services generally carry goods on behalf of customers. The term 'goods' covers most things that are moved by road, except people. It includes:

  • goods, baggage and chattels of any description

  • animals and plants

  • money, documents and all other things of value.

Goods transported by road are also covered by the Carriage of Goods Act 1979, which also includes carriers' rights and actions that others can take against them.

Note that if you use an unlicensed transport service, you could be liable for a fine up to $25,000 (see section 79E of the Land Transport Act 1998).

Carriage of Goods Act 1979(external link)
Section 79E of the Land Transport Act 1998(external link)

Using towing (vehicle recovery) services

Vehicle recovery services tow vehicles and receive payment for providing the service. For example, tow trucks can be required to tow crashed vehicles to safe places or be called by parking enforcement officers to move illegally parked vehicles.

Tow-truck operators are required to comply with a number of operating rules detailed in section 10 of the Land Transport (Operator Licensing) Rule 1999. In particular, all tow-truck drivers are required to wear identification cards and behave in an orderly and civil way.

Land Transport (Operator Licensing) Rule 1999

Chain of responsibility

The 'chain of responsibility' recognises that everyone who influences a driver's behaviour and compliance should, and must, be held accountable if that influence results in non-compliance.

If you use a truck or vehicle recovery service, you have responsibilities under the chain of responsibility.

Find out more about the chain of responsibility

Making a complaint

If you're concerned about the actions of a trucking or towing service operator, it's a good idea to discuss the issue with them first. Alternatively, you can talk to our contact centre.