Taxi law specialist, James Button, has recently released an article regarding Coronavirus and taxis in which he recognises the taxi industry as a vital part of our transport infrastructure. Despite the fact that there is currently a downturn in the use of taxis, they will remain an essential form of transport for those that need to attend hospitals, GPs and shops.
James Button also provides some useful advice for drivers which include:
- It is ultimately the decision of the hackney carriage or private hire vehicle driver to decide if they are happy to continue providing their normal services considering the potential risks.
- If a driver is suffering from the symptom of Coronavirus, a new, continuous cough and/or high fever, they should not continue working and follow government guidelines to self isolate.
- Although it is obviously not possible to disinfect a vehicle after each passenger, frequently cleaning areas which are often touched such as door handles and seat belts will help improve the environmental safety of your vehicle.
Hackney carriage and private hire drivers, whether employees or self employed, must adhere to the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. Both driver and proprietor have a responsibility to ensure, to the best of their ability, that the vehicle is safe.
You can read James Button's full article here. If you look at the conclusions on the last paragraph, page three, Mr Button is openly recognising our industry as being a vital part of the transport infrastructure.
Please find below some really useful information and tips for taxi drivers regarding how a learning disability or autism may affect someone travelling with you and how you can help.
Simple things like being patient, communicating clearly and explaining what is happening on a journey could make a big difference to someone with a learning disability and make a positive impact on their day by helping them travel independently.
Have you seen this open letter written by Jim Thomas from Taxi Leaks? Written to Shaun Bailey, Andrew Boff and Gregg Hands. It is interesting to read that chief magistrate Emma Arbuthnot might be hearing Uber's case! Go and take a read by following the link below:
If you turn to page 63 of the January 2020 edition of the Private Hire Taxi Monthly (PHTM) magazine - you will see an advert for Safe Systems CCTV Ltd. Dave Lawrie from Safe Systems CCTV has been approved by Southampton City Council and can offer you competitive service on a CCTV system for your Taxi or Private Hire vehicle.
Safe Systems CCTV are a nationally approved in-vehicle CCTV provider with over 20 years of experience in the licensed trade. They work with local authorities and trade groups and can provide help, support and the supply of a purpose built systems which comply with all legislation.
You can find more information about the company and the service they provide by visiting their website here.
Ian Hall, Chairman of the SHPHA, is now an Executive Board Member of the National Private Hire Taxi Association (NPHTA). As a leading trade association, the NPHTA can offer support and a range of benefits to all taxi drivers.
This month you will find Ian Hall on page 30 of the January edition of Private Hire Taxi Monthly (PHTM). The magazine which is distributed to taxi drivers throughout the UK contains editorial on a range of taxi trade related issues, the bulk of which is provided by the NPHTA.
In his article, Ian Hall discusses the document: 'Guidance on Determining the Suitability of Applicants and Licensees in the Hackney and Private Hire Trades' which despite only being a guidance document is being adopted by some councils including Southampton City Council. Please see the full article below.
Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash
The Southampton Hackney and Private Hire Association would like to wish all our members a very merry Christmas and a happy, prosperous 2020.
Photo by Austin Distel on Unsplash
Uber have lost their licence to operate in London. Transport for London (TfL) have said they will not grant a new licence for Uber due to 'repeated safety failures.' After losing their licence in 2017, Uber have had two extensions, one of which will run out on Monday. Despite Uber having made some positive changes, Transport for London identified a number of situations in which passengers were put at risk including dismissed or suspended drivers being able to make an account on their app.
Director of Licensing at TfL, Helen Chapman, said: "While we recognise Uber had made improvements, it is unacceptable that Uber has allowed passengers to get into minicabs with drivers who are potentially unlicensed and uninsured."
Uber will continue to operate in London while they appeal the decision.
Read the full news story here: BBC News: Uber Loses Licence to Operate in London
Great news, the SHPHA is privileged to now be a full member of the NPHTA. In addition, Ian Hall, Chairman of SHPHA, has the honour of being an executive board member of the NPHTA.
Take a look at the information below to find out what the NPHTA can offer our members and the type of situation they deal with:
Are you aware of the National Private Hire and Taxi Association? A leading trade association, they have provided support to drivers for over a quarter of a century. Please take a visit to their website and find out more - we think they are definitely worth supporting!
Why not? Through National Private Hire Association you can access a range of interesting and relevant articles and features relating to our trade including those concerning incidents connected with different councils. They also have a solicitors page on advice which could be of use and interesting letters from the Unite Union and the GMB. They even have a league table of fare prices of 362 councils.
If you'd like to find out more why not get in contact with them on (0161) 280 2800 or online at www.npha.org.uk
Back in June, we wrote about how Southampton City Council Licensing were meeting to consider a document entitled: Safe and Suitable - guidance on determining the suitability of applicants and licensees in the hackney and private hire trades. Please see the earlier blog post below:
Guidance on Suitability Document to be considered by SCC
This document was unfortunately approved by Southampton City Council Licensing committee on the 24th July 2019.
There are paragraphs in this document that paint a very bad picture of hackney carriage and private hire drivers, we urge anybody to read this document in its entirety before their local council approves it.