By Staff Reports
(Victor Valley)– Investigators with the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) conducted an enforcement operation in Los Angeles County on February 22, 2018, aimed at combating unlicensed vehicle dismantlers. DMV investigators targeted 40 locations in Sun Valley and Pacoima and issued 29 misdemeanor citations for offenses such as operating as an unlicensed dismantler or auto repair facility, or selling a vehicle not registered to a seller.
DMV investigators have issued 160 citations related to unlicensed vehicle dismantling since 2017. In addition, the department has received approximately 100 complaints on its online reporting form.
“It is against the law for anyone to act as a vehicle dismantler without having an established place of business, meeting specific requirements, and having a current valid license or temporary permit issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles,” DMV Chief of Investigations Frank Alvarez said. “The sole mission of our Vehicle Dismantler Industry Strike Team is to identify and shut down unlicensed vehicle dismantlers.”
During the operation in Sun Valley and Pacoima, the strike team focused on verifying that businesses are complying with state laws and environmental guidelines. In addition, investigators inspected Vehicle Identification Numbers, engines and license plates to recover stolen vehicles, components and parts.
Unlicensed vehicle dismantlers operate in the underground economy and do not comply with state licensing requirements. They also ignore environmental regulations, insurance obligations and workplace safety requirements, and avoid paying taxes. This activity poses potential public safety hazards. For example, vehicle fluids can seep and contaminate ground water, and defective parts can be sold to unsuspecting people.
To report unlicensed vehicle dismantling activity to the DMV Investigations Division, complete the online complaint form.
The DMV unveiled a statewide public awareness campaign to inform the public of the health and safety risks posed by unlicensed vehicle dismantling. Learn more about the department’s efforts to curb this illegal activity on the DMV’s website.
Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. signed Assembly Bill 1858, which requires the DMV to collaborate with representatives from the California Environmental Protection Agency (CalEPA), Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC), State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB), Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle), California Air Resources Board (CARB), and California Department of Tax and Fee Administration, to investigate the occurrences of unlicensed and unregulated vehicle dismantling.
Unlicensed Vehicle Dismantler Enforcement Operations:
Note: DMV investigators have issued 13 citations outside of enforcement operations.