By WILLARD KILLOUGH III
CAROLINA BEACH - Towing someone out of the sand at Freeman Park for a fee is prohibited. The Town of Carolina Beach only permits one tow truck company to tow vehicles from Freeman Park on the North End of Pleasure Island. Helping someone for free is permitted, but charging for it will result in loss of privilege to drive on the beach within the park.
Freeman Park, located beyond the end of Canal Drive on the Northern End of Pleasure Island, is largely outside of the Town's jurisdiction. They have authority to manage the area as a park. That was granted to them by the New Hanover County Board of Commissioners some years ago.
There is a fee charged for vehicle access to drive on the beach front within the park. There is a separate fee for camping during the summer months.
Capt. Harry B. Humphries explained on Tuesday June 13th, "It has been brought to my attention that unauthorized towing is going on at Freeman Park. There are people in two jeeps and another person in a white pickup truck that
are going around soliciting towing in the park. The only tow company the PD has authorized to tow from or on Freeman Park is Thomas Towing."
He explained, "Those individuals who get stuck and a good samaritan comes along and [helps] for free is one thing, however these three vehicles are going around and soliciting for $150.00 to tow people out. They are not authorized."
Humphries told officers if they see a vehicle towing another vehicle in Freeman Park and they are not marked, they are to ask the driver of the towed vehicle if they are being charged money.
He said, "If they say yes, cite the tower on a Freeman Park Civil Citation for “Conduct of Visitors” and pull their Freeman Park Pass."
Daily passes are$30. Daily holiday day passes are $50. An annual vehicle pass is $150. When a pass is voided for violation of park rules, there is no refund.