Friday, August 17, 2018

Lawless London Illegal Electric Rickshaws Driven By Drunken Drivers....Enough's, Enough

'Lawless' rickshaw drivers are accused of drinking and cycling on the streets of London by disgruntled taxi driver

This is the incredible moment a London black cab driver caught out two rickshaw hosts drinking on the job. 

Driver, Tom, noticed the the two rickshaw drivers sitting in their vehicles and drinking alcohol. 

The 41-year-old decided to pull into the taxi rank next to them on Wardour Street in London and watch the pair as they guzzled cans of lager.  

Pair of rickshaw drivers caught drinking alcohol on the job

Tom, who shared the video on Twitter, confronted the drivers who then accused him of being racist. 

He tweeted: 'There it is , you can see #London is lawless #rickshaw 'drivers' drinking alcohol outside m&m store waiting to pick up children and their parents and posting as #taxi @TheLTDA @LTDAForum @The_LCDC @MetCC @TfL @MayorofLondon how long before they gonna kill someone?' 

The pair then go on to criticise Tom's ability to speak English and said, 'When you come to Europe, you need to learn the language.'

Two rickshaw drivers were confronted for drinking lager on the job in Wardour Street, London

The pair, who shared a can, called a black cab driver a racist when he confronted them

Tom said: 'I have arrived on Wardour Street and saw two rickshaws and their drivers sitting in one of them. 

'There was a can of lager on the floor so I decided to keep an eye on them. I put myself on the taxi rank then I noticed that they are actually drinking that lager.'

'It was outside M&M store so clearly they were waiting for children and parents to take them on the ride around London.   

'Those rickshaws have electric engines which makes them illegal and drunk driving that's even more dangerous. 

See ATMs video n Twitter here:

Tom took to Twitter to tell others about what he witnessed and raise awareness of drink driving

'I've called met police but they were extremely busy as it was the same time as that incident outside parliament so it was clearly ignored. 

'I decided to record those drivers to raise awareness about this illegal activities around West End. I'm shocked that TFL and met police is powerless around them. 

'Just wondering what needs to happen for them to be taken off the roads?' 

Source  : Daily Mail.

Private Hire driver Allowed To Keep Licence Despite Previously Being Jailed For Child Sex Abuse.

A Private Hire driver has been  allowed to keep his licence and job despite previously being jailed for child abuse.
Sandwell councillors allowed the minicab driver to continue driving despite guidelines saying people convicted of sex offences be barred
Jailed for sexually assaulting a child he’s been allowed to continue working by councillors at a meeting held behind closed doors.
Sandwell councillors allowed the unnamed man to continue driving despite guidelines recommending people convicted of sex offences be barred from holding a private hire licence.
Members of the licensing sub committee made the decision at its meeting in July from which the public and press were excluded.
Minutes of the meeting released this week only refer to the driver as 'Mr S G' and exclude any information which identifies him.
The secrecy surrounding the decision has been criticised by the Chairman of the West Midlands Private Hire Drivers Association, who called for committees to be open to the public.
The conviction for sexual assault was revealed when councillors reviewed Mr S G's license.
They were told that in November 1999, he was convicted of indecent assault on a female under 14 and was jailed for three months by Warley Magistrates .

Speaking at the committee, Mr S G said he was at a fun fair and had sat next to a young girl.
Denying he touched her, he said the child reported him to the police and he was charged.
After adjourning to take legal advice, councillors decided to allow him to keep his PH licence and: "Warn Mr S G in respect of his conduct and the effect any further problems may have on his licence."
The minutes also show the committee's decision to depart from guidelines on sexual offences, was: "Due to the length of time that had lapsed since the conviction, his good driving record and good character."
"Mr S G had held a licence for 12 years and had not received any further convictions."
But Raheel Shah, Chairman of the West Midlands Private Hire Drivers Association, has criticised the decision and the secrecy surrounding it.
"No one with a conviction for sexual assault should be given a Taxi or Private Hire licence, " he said.
"I think meetings of this kind should be open so the public can see what is going on."
In a statement to the LDRS, Sandwell council admitted it knew of Mr S.G's conviction when they originally issued him a licence in 2007.

Explaining it's July decision, a spokesman said: "Sandwell's private hire and hackney carriage licensing policy, introduced in October 2017,requires existing licence holders who committed a serious offence in the past who have been previously licensed by the Committee or officers or Court to appear before the Committee to consider whether or not their licence should be revoked.
"The Licensing Committee will consider each case on its merits and take into account the length of time that has elapsed since the conviction and the drivers conduct and the length of time the licence holder has held a licence."
"The public and press are excluded from the hearing of individual cases. This is to avoid the possible disclosure of exempt information under Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972, relating to an individual and or information relating to any action taken or to be taken in connection with the prevention, investigation or prosecution of crime."

This is similar to the “killer on the Knowledge” case were TfL allowed Shamsul Haque, who murdered his wife and assaulted his daughter, to become a Private Hire Driver and also sign on to the Knowledge program to become a licensed Taxi driver. 

After two mass demonstrations outside Penton Street, the man was thrown off the Knowledge and had his PH licence revoked. 
It also heralded the exit from TfLTPH of many directors and managerial staff at that time, and rightly so. 

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Uber reportedly lost $891 million in the second quarter of 2018 as growth slows

Uber brought in $2.8 billion in revenue in the second quarter of 2018, but ultimately lost $891 million thanks to increased spending by the ride-hailing company, according to Bloomberg

Uber, which is privately held but chooses to report its quarterly earnings to investors and the public, is seeing some growing pains from its massive effort to scale globally. It’s cash-burn rate wasn’t as bad as the same period last year, when the company reported losing roughly $1.1 billion. But it’s a big drop from the previous quarter, when the company posted a rare profit thanks to its decision to sell its businesses in southeast Asia and Russia to local rivals. 

Uber is planning for an initial public offering in the second half of 2019, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi has said. That could be complicated by Uber’s habit of burning large quantities of cash. The company lost $4.5 billion last year, and has burned through $11 billion since launching in 2009. But Uber still has $7.3 billion cash on hand, according to Bloomberg, which certainly gives it some running room before an IPO. 

Bloomberg characterized the report as Khosrowshahi embracing the company’s “growth above profit” ethos. But it has cast a spotlight on some of Uber’s more expensive, trouble-prone projects. Specifically, the company’s beleaguered self-driving car operation is said to be losing as much as $200 million a quarter, The Information reported today. And Bloomberg noted that Uber is being urged by investors to off-load the unit.

Source : TheVerge.

TAXI LEAKS EXTRA BIT : by Tom Scullion 

Uber record loss of £702m for the latest quarter.

The good old 'Gig Economy'!

Isn't it supposed to revolutionise the world and show us the way to the future, with successful, dynamic, get up and go business strategy, leaving behind those Luddite riddled, antiquated businesses like London's black cabs, you know, businesses that have been around for hundreds of years?

The Gig Economy, led by their own version of 1st World War Generals, taking their armies over the top of the trenches, to certain destruction. But the Generals are ok. They're safely hidden well away from the front line, ensconced in penthouse offices with luxurious surroundings & mega salaries, bonuses, fine dining & hob-nobbing with bent politicians and bureaucrats the world over.

Once the masses realise the carnage inflicted upon them, their families & their society, then maybe we'll see those 'Generals' and their lickspittle politician friends hanging upside down from proverbial meathooks in market squares, across the country.

Because by then, even the most ardent GiG supporter will come to realise that all 'GiG' ever stood for was 'Greed is Good'.

Exclusive : Colts Taxis Getts Rid, In Favour Of A Non-Profit TaxiApp Provided By Licensed Taxi Sean Paul Day.


It’s easy to be critical, in fact, it’s easy to find fault in someone or something or even something some one is doing. Add to that a clash in personality and it’a wonder we manage to get any work done with the amount of criticism we have to wade through. 

Now, if you want to take criticism to the next level you need to be someone who earns a living out of the trade. It doesn’t matter who or what you do, or if you are good, bad, or ugly, you are going to get criticised. 

What the trade lacks is reciprocity, alliances or partners if you will. There was a time when the regulation that governs our industry prevailed, but now it seems, with everyone else partnering anyone they can find, the trade is becoming increasingly isolated in a world where a few alliances would do us a world of good 

TAXIAPP UK - London’s only Trade app that’s owned and run by drivers themselves is always looking for different ways to advertise their product, and one such place is on the side of taxis. However, TAXIAPP/ unlike the Corporate led apps- isn’t afforded the luxury of any outside investment and because a lot of the fleet owners look to maximising profits from renting cabs, the cost of advertising on cabs has always been out of the price range for TAXIAPP to consider 

Enter Michael Glassman from Colts Cabs. Responding to the strong feelings in the trade against ride hailing apps, particularly Gett, he has taken the stance to remove all of their liveries and replace them with TAXIAPP ones completely free of charge. In total Glassman has supplied a fleet of 80 cabs for TAXIAPP to advertise their brand. 


A spokesperson from TAXIAPP said they were thrilled at what is effectively an unprecedented act of goodwill and hopes that the exposure will generate more business for the app, and also shine a torch on the commitment Colts Cabs have shown towards the trade 

Of course it’s not entirely without cost as the app had to consider designing and producing the livery itself and of coarse there was the fitting to consider. "We did actually get a very good deal from Dvinylwraps," says Scott, who looks after the app’s finances "To do all 80 cabs in one go simply wasn’t feasible, but we had to find a way as it was far too good an offer to let go by the wayside"

What you’ll see is a dozen cabs (possibly more ) each month being filtered out on to the streets of the Capital emblazoned with the TAXIAPP logo.

As far as criticism goes? Well, very few people in this world do anything for zero pay off, but as far as this act of good will is concerned, Glassman didn’t have to do it, but he chose to, and should be commended for it. That’s criticism, partnerships and helping each other all in one. As the mantra goes, support those that support the trade.

I await criticism

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Quebec Is Giving $250 Million In Taxpayer Money To Taxi Drivers Who Have Lost Business Because Of Uber

However, the money is not coming from Uber, the money will be paid to the drivers and Taxi companies direct from public funds.

Ride-sharing companies have quickly come to dominate the taxi market all over the world and have devastated the legitimate licensed taxi trades in many cities.  

Uber has made its services ubiquitous on Saturday nights flooding cities with cars, causing congestion, especially in Montreal, where a young population and booming nightlife have come to rely on ride-shares.

Montreal taxi drivers, have bemoaned this massive change in the industry. The taxi industry has tried repeatedly to get Uber banned from the city. Drivers have staged protests and pursued court cases but to no avail. Uber is her to stay.

For that reason the provincial government of Quebec has decided to offer compensation to taxi drivers whose business has suffered because of Uber.

A whopping total of $250 million in public funds is expected to go to drivers who have seen the value of their permits plummet from hundreds of thousands of dollars to just a few tens of thousands. 
More information is forthcoming from the government.

Many were quick to point out that, like it or not, this is just how capitalism works. New technologies, industries, and markets replace obsolete services. Workers in older industries have to adapt to changing times.

But instead of investing heavily in a transition to the new industry, the government is handing them cash to make up for the declining value of permits. Only $44 million will go toward improving taxi companies to help them compete in changing times.

Taxi drivers deserve secure livelihoods. But is this the best use of public funds? 
Lump sums will not help those drivers in the long term

Source : MTL blog.

New Tarif Update : Changes Due To Come Into Effect Saturday 6 October 2018

Tariff Update today:
Tariff email from Darren Crowson (TFL) 

Dear All,

Changes to the taxi fares and tariffs have now been approved and the changes are due to come into effect on Saturday 6 October 2018.

The changes approved were:

 *   Increasing the minimum fare from £2.60 to £3.00
 *   Increasing Tariff 1 by 0.6 per cent
 *   Increasing Tariff 2 by 0.6 per cent
 *   Extending the fuel charge arrangements until the next taxi fares and tariffs update
 *   Increasing by 50 pence the fixed fares for shared taxis from Euston Station (with the exception of the Euston Station to Lords Cricket Ground fare)
 *   Increasing the soiling charge from £40.00 to £60.00

The following were also approved:

 *   Freezing Tariff 3
 *   Freezing the tariff rate for journeys over six miles (sometimes referred to as Tariff 4)
 *   Further work and research being conducted to look at fixed and capped fare schemes to and from Heathrow Airport
 *   Adding fares for six passengers sharing to the shared taxi conversion table

·        Requiring all card payment devices approved for use in taxis to accept American Express as well as Visa and MasterCard

Some items discussed when we met or which were included in the consultation document were not taken forward and I'll run through what changed, what wasn't approved or consulted on, and the details of the new tariffs when we meet on Thursday 30 August 2018.

Information for the taximeter companies is now being finalised and I'll send you a copy of this as soon as it is ready.

If you have any questions let me know and I'll either respond by email or collate these and then run through them when we meet.


Darren Crowson
Policy Manager
Transport for London - Taxi and Private Hire
3rd Floor (3G2), 230 Blackfriars Road
Tel: 020 3054 2945 (internal 82945)

TAXI LEAKS EXTRA BIT :  by Jim Thomas.
This is probably the worst negotiated tariff change ever in the history of the trade.
Coming at a time when we are fighting what appears to be a losing battle with not only the competition but also the public and the press over our prices. 

The public use Uber and other PH companies because they say we are well over priced
And at first glance this looks like quite a big increase ....... But that's not the case. 

The 40p is in effect “free” to passengers, as the yardage requirements are being altered.
The increase will net out at 0.6% per job, not 0.6% plus 40p.
The nighttime fare on rate three will be unchanged yet the stigma of the 40p will see us crucified in the media, with headlines in the Standard announcing "Greedy Cabbies Put Up Taxi Fares". 

A rise of 0.6% is worthless and should never have been agreed by our orgs. 
Think about an extra 0.6% going to buy you a new £70k TXe ?
We should have gone for positive PR and been in the headlines with "London Cabbies Freeze Fares".