Saturday, November 09, 2013

Lest We Forget.

They went with songs to the battle, they were young.
Straight of limb, true of eyes, steady and aglow.
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted,
They fell with their faces to the foe.
They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning,
We will remember them.
They mingle not with their laughing comrades again;
They sit no more at familiar tables of home;
They have no lot in our labour of the day-time;
They sleep beyond England's foam

Friday, November 08, 2013

Nissan Shows Latest Version Of NV200 with New Smart Hybrid Engine And Auto Transmission

Making its debut in Dubai, was the Nissan Smart Hybrid Taxi, based on the Nissan NV200 van. The Japanese manufacturer hopes this model will attract the RTA and taxi companies here for their fleets.

Nissan has already started supplying the NV200 as taxis in New York. This model now features the new S-hybrid system which incorporates a 2.0-litre 4-cylinder petrol engine with direct-injection and a CVT automatic.

Dubai Taxi Corporation Buys 200 New Nissan Altima Taxis.

The Dubai Taxi Corporation (DTC) at the Roads & Transport Authority (RTA) has signed an agreement with the Arabian Automobiles Company (AAC) for the purchase of 200 brand new Nissan Altima 2.5 S, including maintenance, repairs and genuine spare parts supply.

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Driverless cars to be introduced in Milton Keynes

Driverless cars will be tested for the first time in a UK town after £1.5m was made available from the government.

Twenty driver-operated vehicles will be running by 2015, but it is hoped 100 fully automated versions will be introduced by 2017, the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills said.The "pods", which will travel at 12mph (19km/h), will ferry people around Milton Keynes on designated pathways.

Similar pods currently operate at Heathrow Airport.

It forms part of a £75m government scheme to enable businesses to make and test low carbon technologies, which it says will keep the UK at the forefront of engine design and help to safeguard up to 30,000 jobs in engine production.

The electric-powered pods can be booked via a smartphone app and will be able to accommodate two passengers.

While travelling, they will use sensors to avoid obstacles.

'Cutting edge'

In the automated versions, passengers travelling to their selected destination will be able to browse the internet, check emails, read the newspaper and play games inside the pod. The cost of each journey has not yet been decided.

If successful, they could be used in other towns and cities across the UK, the government said.

Business Secretary Vince Cable said: "By 2050, very few - if any - new cars will be powered solely by the traditional internal combustion engines, so it is important that the UK car industry is at the cutting edge of low carbon technologies."

Early collaborators on the project include the engineering firm Arup and the universities of Cambridge and Oxford.

Google has been licensed to experiment with driverless vehicles in the US, claiming that in testing it logged more than 300,000 miles (482,803km) in its cars without an accident.

Dress code crackdown means taxi drivers can't wear Rugby shirts.

Taxi drivers in Sir Peter Hendy's home town of Bath, face having to adhere to a stricter dress code, with sports shirts - including Bath Rugby ones - banned.

Bath and North East Somerset Council is looking to update its rules and regulations for taxis and taxi drivers.

Examples of unacceptable standards of dress included in new rules include clothing that is ripped, torn or holed, items bearing words or graphics that are suggestive or offensive, sports shirts such as football, rugby or cricket shirts, and tracksuits.

Any driver that is deemed to have failed to meet these standards of dress and continues to defy the code after being warned by council officials will be given four penalty points - with 12 in a year risking the loss of his or her licence.

One taxi driver, who wanted to remain anonymous, said: “I have been a taxi driver in Bath for eight years and I have never heard something so stupid.

“What you wear will not affect how you drive.”.

Another driver said: “I resent being told what I can and can’t wear.

“I can understand that the council want us to look smart, but banning sports shirts is over the top.”

The council said that taxi drivers had been consulted and no objections had been received.

Cabinet member for neighbourhoods Councillor David Dixon said “Taxi drivers are often the first or final impression of the city that people receive when travelling into, around or from Bath.

"In effect, taxi drivers are ambassadors for our area and the content of the council’s licensing policy reflects the requirement for drivers to perform their duties professionally.

"For many years, our taxi licensing standards have insisted upon respectable dress and a clean and tidy appearance.

"However, there has been a lack of clarity on how this is defined.

"Following discussions with the Taxi Forum, we have suggested that wearing clothing which is ripped or torn, a tracksuit, words or graphics on clothing that are offensive and sports shirts.

"A football, rugby or cricket shirt is recreational dress.

"Nobody can seriously suggest this attire is suitable for the workplace and at very worst it could result in rival fans being openly aggressive toward the taxi driver."

The proposed changes will be discussed at a B&NES cabinet meeting next Wednesday. 

Source Bath Cronicle 

London Taxi Drivers To Offer Free Service a To Veterans On Remembrance Sunday.

United Cabbies Group is honoured to announce that they will be organising a free taxi service for veterans on Remembrance Sunday, 10th November 2013.

This will be the fourth year this service has been offered and in conjunction with the Royal British Legion the service has become an important feature for veterans travelling to ceremonies in Central London


Taxis will be available from 8am from most major rail stations and British Legion locations.


London Taxi Drivers will assemble on Westminster Bridge to observe the period of silence. There will then be a free shuttle service to ferry veterans to locations in London.


Taxi drivers are giving their time without any payment whatsoever and Transport for London has no involvement in this service.


This year there will be opportunity to see and ride in old London Taxis from the early part of the 20th Century. 

One of the taxis used in Downton Abbey will also be on Westminster Bridge after the Ceremonies.



For further information contact


Jonathan 07890696764 (Press Officer)


United Cabbies Group



Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Another cyclist killed on Mile End Road cycle superhighway CS2.

A cyclist has died after a collision with a tipper lorry in east London on a cycle superhighway.

The Metropolitan Police confirmed they were called to CS2 on Mile End Road at 16:38 GMT and a man had died. Transport for London said nine cyclists had died on London's roads so far this year, compared with 14 in 2012.

This cyclist is the third to have died on CS2, which a coroner recently described as "confusing".

The Met said the cyclist, who has not been formally identified, was believed to be 62. They believe the collision happened as the lorry moved off from a stationary position. The lorry was not turning.

The driver stopped and will be interviewed by officers under caution. He has not been arrested, police added.

A post-mortem examination will be scheduled in due course.

A second cyclist has been injured after a collision with a coach in Bloomsbury. The man in his 60s is being treated in hospital after the accident at the junction of Kingsway and Theobalds Road at around 7 o'clock this evening.

Watch @BBCTomEdwards report on the east London cycle superhighway extension which officially opened today

New plans for segregated bike lanes will see road space for other traffic greatly reduced.

Where do they expect the rush hour traffic to go?

"My heart bleeds for them when someone gets killed. But it's their own fault at the end of the day."

Toronto's Mayor on cyclists

Latest On a the Law Commission.

Activity in the house of Commons..Taxis: 4 Nov 2013 : Column 48W

Dame Angela Watkinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment he has made of the proposal by the Law Commission to set nationwide standards for drivers, operators and vehicles in the taxi trade. [173483]

Stephen Hammond: The Government has made no formal assessment of the Law Commission's proposals as set out in their Interim Statement of 9 April 2013. We are awaiting the Law Commission's final report before considering the recommendations in their entirety.

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

London Taxis Voted Best In The World 6th Year Running.

TORONTONov. 5, 2013 /CNW/ - London taxis have been voted the best taxis in the world for the sixth year in a row, according to the annual global taxi survey from®. London secured 22 per cent of the votes, a clear runaway winner followed by New York with 10 per cent and Tokyo with 9 per cent in second and third place.

London's iconic black cabs won nearly a quarter of the vote in the survey*, which also saw Berlin reclaim its position in the top five list, in fourth place with 5 per cent and MadridMexico City and Amsterdam tied for fifth with 4 per cent.

Of the cities surveyed in Canada - VancouverMontreal and Toronto - the west coast came out on top for best overall rankings in categories that looked at value, cleanliness, quality of driving, friendliness and availability. Montreal, however, took the honours for best knowledge of the area and Toronto ranked first for safety.

The world's best taxis:

Rank  City  % of votes
1  London  22%
2  New York  10%
3  Tokyo  9%
4  Berlin  5%
5=  Amsterdam   4%
5=  Madrid  4%
5=  Mexico City  4%

Of the 30 countries surveyed, London topped the list across five of the seven categories, including cleanliness (23 per cent), knowledge of the area (27 per cent) and quality of driving (30 per cent). While London cabs were also voted top for friendliness (23%) it was this category that was deemed the least important to travellers, meaning London's friendly cabbies could put some passengers off. Almost a quarter of respondents (23 per cent) voted safety their number one priority when travelling by taxi, which London's cabs also ranked highest on.

New York City and Bangkok taxis tied for first in terms of value for money (20 per cent); interestingly the latter didn't quite make the overall top five this year. New York's recognizable yellow taxis grabbed the top spot when it came to availability (23 per cent).

Categories ranked in order of preference:

Rank    Category  % of votes
1  Safety  23%
2  Value  20%
3  Knowledge of Area  17%
4  Availability  14%
5  Quality of Driving  11%
6  Cleanliness  8%
7  Friendliness  7%

The global taxi survey also revealed the world's more obscure objects that travellers have admitted to leaving behind, which included:

  • A wig and a bird in a cage left behind in a U.S. cab
  • A prosthetic leg and an ex-boyfriend in Australia
  • A trombone in Finland
  • A Rubik's cube in Italy
  • Dentures in Germany

Globally the survey found that people tend to text or email whilst in cab (19 per cent), while sleeping was the second most popular activity (15 per cent), followed by eating (10 per cent) and kissing (9 per cent). When asked which nation was the most amorous in the back of a cab, Brits came out in the lead with 14 per cent admitting to displaying passionate behaviour - 10 per cent higher than the global average of 4 per cent.

Other global findings include:

  •  Over half of travellers (53 per cent) say a taxi as their desired mode of transport from airport to hotel.
  •  Most taxi passengers round up to the nearest whole dollar when tipping (38 per cent) or tip 10 percent (27 per cent) of the fare for their journey.
  •  The most important feature in a taxi is Wi-Fi (14 per cent) beating both the radio and music.
  •  The biggest pet peeve for UK travellers is when taxi drivers take a longer route to the destination.

Alison Couper, Senior Director of Communications of the brand said, "Six years running and London cabs are still leading the pack when it comes to travel - it's great to see! Our iconic black Hackney Carriages and their well informed cabbies can pride themselves on being globally recognized for their expert knowledge and quality of driving, maybe next year we can top the list for all categories!"

Follow the conversation on Twitter @hotelsdotcomca with #BestTaxis

Source: Digital Journal 

Monday, November 04, 2013

Cab drivers share experiences from Logan (Ohio) and London

A pair of local taxi drivers met with a cabbie from another continent this week at the Columbus Washboard Company to talk about their industry.

Columbus Washboard Company Factory Manager James Martin’s father, Barry, came to Logan for a visit from his home in London, England, and wanted to meet a cab driver from the United States while here.

James and his wife, Tara, contacted Logan Mayor Martin Irvine to see if anyone from Logan’s five-month-old cab service would like to meet a London cab driver during his visit.

Adam Anderson, the owner of DayNite Cab Company, said he got a call from Irvine asking if he would like to meet with Barry, who has been a cab driver in London for 44 years. Anderson said he and DayNite Operations Manager Mike Adams would be happy to meet him and “compare apples to apples.”

“When I first started searching the business and looking at things from a customer service standpoint, the UK and Australia have the best cab services in the world,” Anderson said.

The main differences the three cab drivers noticed were how they find customers, as well as some regulations.

“The way we work is completely different,” Barry said. “Most of (Anderson’s) work is on the telephone, pre-bookings and that sort. Ours is more off the street. I drive into town and will be looking for street hales.”

Barry said cab drivers in London are highly regulated, from having to have a specific cab and getting it registered every year.

“It took two years to get a license in London when I got mine. It has gone up now because more people are wanting to do it. It takes four years to get a license now in London,” Martin said.

“In Logan, it takes $25 and a willingness to drive,” Anderson said.

Barry said the cabs in London are specifically designed for narrow streets and numerous U-turns, so he has no choice over what vehicle he can drive.

Anderson said he had to put thought into what vehicle and engine he wanted for his cab.

Adams added that safety regulations and inspection guidelines for the vehicles are the same. All agreed that no cab company wants what Barry called “cowboy drivers.” They also agreed that, despite the different culture, cab drivers, like bartenders, are fill-in therapists.

“People will tell us something because they know we aren’t going to repeat it to anyone,” Barry said.

Barry and Anderson both said they enjoy meeting new people every day and serve all levels of society. Barry said he has given rides to royalty that he picked up at Buckingham Palace and also people from the poorest section of London.

“I have picked up people that want to go to the casino and will spend $300 to go up there and back,” Anderson said. “Then I get people who are trying to get the change together for the $3 trip across town.”

Barry said he was glad to have a chance to hear from a cab driver with a different perspective after he and his daughter, Elizabeth, spent 15 hours traveling from London to Logan.

“When Barry first got here, I said to him ‘You traveled all this way to talk about work? Maybe we should go out for a little trigger therapy,’” Anderson said.

Anderson and Adams drove the Martins out to a driving range in their cab and shot Anderson’s collection of guns, including a Colt 1911, .44 Magnum and .30-30 Winchester.

“I have never seen guns and rifles like that before in my life. And don’t expect I ever will again unless I come back,” Barry said.

Firearms are not as easily accessible in England; Elizabeth said only law enforcement and criminals have guns like that.

Barry said he enjoyed the shooting experience as well as talking to Anderson about his business.

“You are doing well and having a positive attitude is a big bonus. If you can go into it thinking you are going to win, you are going to win,” Barry said.

Difference Between London And Logan Cab Drivers: Mike Adams (left) and Adam Anderson (right) of DayNite Cab Company met with follow cab driver Barry Martin from London, England who was in town to visit his son James, who is the factory manager at the Columbus Washboard Company. The cab drivers met to talk about the differences between driving in London and Logan. - Photo by Marika Lee/The Logan Daily News

Shooting Range: DayNite Cab Company Operations Manager Mike Adams (right) shows Barry and James Martin (from left) how to operate one of the guns at a shooting range. Barry, a London cab driver, is in Logan visiting his son James and wanted to meet with American cab drivers. Adams and DayNite owner Adam Anderson decided to take him shooting too, so his vacation was not just about work. - Photo by Marika Lee/The Logan Daily News

Sunday, November 03, 2013

Appeals Court OKs NYC Test of "E-Hailing" Taxi Cabs

New York City's experiment with taxi-hailing smartphone apps got a green light Tuesday from an appeals court.

The state Supreme Court's Appellate Division said the city can continue a yearlong test of "e-hail" services, one of several recent changes to the taxi network in a city known for its yellow cabs.

The test "was properly adopted" and allowable under city laws, the court said to cheers from the city administration.

"New York City has always been a taxi-hailing town, and we're pleased to be able to offer passengers more than one way to accomplish that," city Taxi and Limousine Commissioner David Yassky said in a statement.

A lawyer for e-hail opponents didn't immediately return a call about the ruling, which upheld a lower court decision.

Traditionally, the city's roughly 13,000 yellow cabs have been prohibited from taking pre-arranged rides. But the taxi commission OK'd the e-hail experiment in December, saying that the city shouldn't turn its back on new taxi technology.

Car service owners sued. They said that the project was unfair because they rely on pre-arranged fares and that it was too broad to qualify as a test, among other arguments.

With the appeals court's OK, a few companies started offering the service while the appeal played out.

Some cabbies are finding e-hailing useful to connect with passengers late at night and outside Manhattan, said Michael Woloz, a spokesman for the Metropolitan Taxicab Board of Trade, a group representing fleet owners with a total of more than 5,200 cabs. The association joined the lawsuit to support e-hailing.

"It's something that our drivers are learning how to best utilize," Woloz said by phone.

During nearly 12 years in office, Mayor Michael Bloomberg has driven a number of changes to the city's taxi system. Several have spurred lawsuits.

This month, a court blocked a plan to transform the fleet with a minivan-style "Taxi of Tomorrow," three weeks before it was to start taking effect. The city is appealing that ruling.

In June, the state's highest court said the city could proceed with another change: letting livery cab drivers pick up passengers who hail them on streets in much of the city.