For the first time in several years, the city of Lancaster declared a snow emergency Tuesday.
Tow trucks hauled off around 100 cars packed on snow emergency routes.
And people who had their cars towed had to pay $180.00 to get their vehicles back.
But police say it’s not their fault when signs on the street are there to warn people it can happen.
Nearly a hundred people waited in line at Silverback Towing in Lancaster after they realized what was missing.
“I thought maybe somebody stole my truck, but I could see the drag marks out of the snow,” says Dave Rohrer.
Veteran, Dave Rohrer says he was trying to do something nice for his elderly and disabled neighbors by shoveling their driveway.
“When I came back that was quite a shock,” says Rohrer.
Wednesday morning, Rohrer says he walked 5 miles to get to the tow lot — just to wait hours more.
But, Rohrer says he should’ve known better.
“They gotta do what they gotta do, I’m not going to get excited about it I was excited but I’m not anymore that walk cooled me off,” says Rohrer.
24 hours later, not everyone had “cooled off” as those who stood in line showed their displeasure with the towing attendants.
People described the waiting room as cramped, wet, and similar to a prison.
Some people say they couldn’t have moved their car even if they wanted to.
“I work third shift so no effort was made for someone who might be on an awkward sleeping schedule,” says new resident of Lancaster, Robert Hall.
But Lancaster police say they did everything possible to warn people.
Lt. Timothy Frey says they sent messages via PennDot, T.V., and social media.
Some officers even knocked on doors.
“We went above and beyond in trying to get the word out and unfortunately there’s just going to be some people who just don’t get the word for one reason or another,” says Lt. Frey.
Lt. Frey says people who live or park on snow emergency routes have a responsibility.
“Knowing what the requirements are and what those signs mean and even if they’re predicting snow, they should be following up to see even if there is a snow emergency and even if there isn’t one declared maybe it’s a good idea just to move your vehicle off that route to be safe,” says Lt. Frey.
The reason for the long wait at the tow lot was because the lots were so jam-packed that multiple cars had to be rearranged just to get one car out.