5,000 vehicles have been towed away since campaign was launched in 2011

By Hana Namrouqa – Nov 12,2016

AMMAN — More than 1,300 abandoned cars have been removed from the streets of the capital since the start of this year, according to a municipal official.

Under an ongoing effort to rid the streets of Amman of causes of visual and environmental pollution, all cars that are left on the sides of streets are being towed away to a guarded location east of the capital, Raed Haddadin, the head of the construction monitoring department at the Greater Amman Municipality (GAM) said on Saturday.

“The municipality started the initiative in 2011 because of the excessive number of abandoned cars that have been left for years across the capital,” Haddadin told The Jordan Times.

Since the launch of the campaign, the municipality has towed away over 5,000 cars from the streets, the official said, adding that the majority of the cars were removed from industrial areas across the capital.

“The initiative started with the aim of improving the appearance and cleanliness of the capital, but we later realised that the abandoned vehicles were also being used by young people for negative practices, such as taking drugs,” he added.

In addition, wrecked vehicles also take up part of the road and create traffic jams in several cases, the official said, noting that the abandoned cars are either left because they are wrecked and rusty or belong to several people as part of an inheritance.

In the clean-up campaign, implemented in cooperation with the Central Traffic Department, GAM teams locate abandoned vehicles and notify their owners that they need to remove them.

They mark vehicles with stickers informing their owners to remove them within a 14-day period before they are towed away.

If the owners do not comply, the abandoned vehicles are towed to a six-dunum impound lot near the Ring Road, according to Haddadin.

Owners can retrieve their impounded vehicles after paying fees for transport as well as fees for each day their car was impounded, depending on the size of the vehicle, according to the municipality.

Municipality teams conduct regular inspection rounds or following reports from residents, according to GAM.

“All of the towed away abandoned cars have been retrieved by their owners, except for 150 vehicles, which will later be dismantled and sold as scrap,” the municipal official noted.