When Can a Car Being Driven In An Unsafe Condition Be Impounded ?

In City of Bay Village v. Dillon (Oct. 5, 1995), 8th Dist. No. 68885, 1995 Ohio App, the Eighth Appellate District held that where the defendant was driving a motor vehicle with a flat tire, the officer had "reasonable suspicion the defendant was driving an automobile in an unsafe condition in violation of R.C. 4513.02." As a result, we hold that appellant's vehicle was unsafe. Appellant argues that even if his car was unsafe, Sec. 337.01(a) of the Willoughby Hills Traffic Code merely prohibited him from driving it on the public streets, and did not authorize the officers to impound it. He cites Taylor, supra, in support. In that case the state relied on R.C. 4513.02(E) as authority to impound the vehicle. That statute provides: "When any motor vehicle is found to be unsafe, the inspecting officer may order it removed from the highway ." The court in Taylor held that because the statute did not expressly authorize impoundment, it did not provide such authorization. the court in Taylor held: "a car may be impounded when impoundment is authorized by statute or municipal ordinance." Id. at 422.