Thursday, July 31, 2014

Uber Allegedly Inciting Suburban Taxi Drivers To Break The Law.

It's been alleged, that employees of a certain controversial smart phone app, may be inciting suburban drivers to break the law.

According to TfL, it is illegal for a suburban driver to accept a hiring/booking (pre booked or otherwise) while outside of the area they are licensed by TfL to operate inside.  The journey would also not be covered by their insurance as this would be a case of illegally plying for hire. Driving without insurance is an arrestable criminal offence.

Uber promotional staff are visiting suburban ranks, encouraging Yellow Badge Drivers to sign up to the app. 

We've been informed, that promotional staff are telling  suburban drivers who sign up to Uber, not only will they receive a £50 incentive fee, but also (if they remove their IDs), they can wait around in Central London and can accept work. 

This surely is an incitement to get others to break the law and could in itself be an illegal action? 

But will TfL take Uber to court. The simplest thing to do is revoke their licence with immediate effect.

Or is this latest incident more proof of TfLs bias towards Uber.

Uber's should never have been licensed in 2012, as they did not conform to the conditions of fitness and were using a meter to calculate fares in contravention of the Private Hire Vehicles Act 1998.

It should have been upto Uber's to go to court, to appeal against TfLs decision.

Why would a licensing authority, take the trouble and expence of going to court, to prove legality of an operator they themselves have already licensed. It just don't add up.

This whole Uber issue doesn't smell right and (in our opinion) requires an independent investigation to make sure corruption hasn't taken place, insuring Uber's licence was issued with no complications.

The LTDA should never have taken Uber drivers to court, they should have gone for TfL, for not acting responsibly as a Licensing Authority.

TfL under the watchful eye of Mayor Boris Johnson, Transport Commissioner Sir Peter Hendy and Managing Director of Surface Transport Leon Daniels have a duty of care to their licensees to operate in a clear and transparent manner. 

Over the last 5 years this has not been the case and there have been instances were rules have been overlooked and bent to accommodate certain PH operators.

PH roundels were supplied wholesale to a West London minicab firm, without the need for their cars to be inspected. Ex Director of LTPH John Mason excused this action as just someone doing a friend a favour. 
No one was ever prosecuted.

RD2 were issued multiple licence variations the same day they registered as a PH operator in contra to a TfL policy requirement that PH operators be in business for a minimum of one year before variations can be issued.
After a year of lies from Both the director and deputy director of LTPH, we were finally informed, TfL can do whatever they like and that TfL policy is no more than guidelines.

Now the scandal of Uber being Licensed without conformity or compliance to conditions of fitness.

TfL should be the true target of any legal action:
The Taxi trade orgs need to man up and take on TfL in the courts. 
At present, they are chasing the wrong criminal. 


Anonymous said...

Common sense at last a life line for y.b lets rejoice..well done uber .

An Adult said...

Editor your expecting the one thing that can't be provided from the UTG, we have Grant Davis tweeting yet another alibi as to why he won't meet with the RMT etc.

Apparently years someone something that upset him.

Of course none of this came from the RMT as an organisation, if someone with an LTDA diary gives someone some verbals, should we be upset with McNamara, of course not!

Grow up and show some leadership!

Anonymous said...

Uber have prob had there legal people have a good look at this and have concluded no laws have been broken here I would imagine Uber employ top lawers and not mugs..

Anonymous said...

Their should be a public enquiry in to TFL/taxi PH. Why do Daniel Henley feel they are worth £350,000 a year for the mess they have made of the Taxi trade they earn moor then the PM. Heads need to roll at TFL?

Anonymous said...

You start off your article stating that, According to TfL, it is illegal for a suburban driver to accept a hiring/booking (pre booked or otherwise) while outside of the area they are licensed by TfL to operate inside. The journey would also not be covered by their insurance as this would be a case of illegally plying for hire. Driving without insurance is an arrestable criminal offence.

Then, Uber's should never have been licensed in 2012, as they did not conform to the conditions of fitness and were using a meter to calculate fares in contravention of the Private Hire Vehicles Act 1998.

Now which of these statements above are correct, is it the first one, the second one or neither?

You appear to accept and agree with the first statement without question but not the second. Why is that?

As TfL don’t appear to know the law regarding these issues I can’t see them taking anyone to court until they do.

Anonymous said...

Jim what a lot of cobblers tfl spout out If that is the case about our insurance why do we pay the same as a green badge ?? why do we pay the same for our licence Why when there is a code RED at heathrow airport are we called in to help out ???MY insurance as per a telephone call to LV covers me for the whole country and not just my sector there are no restrictions on me or the cab Full stop .And if I want to make a private arrangement out side of my sector with my ID's in then i will and TFL can Kiss my arse its being run by a bunch of egotistical maniac's.

Anonymous said...

Com cab and radio taxis have been giving yellows work outside of their sectors for years and tfl have no problems with this. So tfl cannot now claim this is illegal .

Anonymous said...

Rule and divide comes to mind.
The revocation of uber's License
should now be just a formality
for TFL.
If a dozen yellow badges sign up to them,that should do the trick.

Editorial said...

Anon 10:38
First statement is fact
Second statement in opinion

We agree with first statement as it is a matter of public records and covers the same rules that make a journey obtained by any unlawful act by a minicab driver (touting, illegally plying for hire) uninsured.

Anon 11:40
You may be covered for the whole of the UK, but your vehicle is not covered to be used in an unlawful act.
As for Heathrow, I believe a certain faction of suburbia are going to the high court regarding restrictive practices. Or so I've heard.

I have seen no actual proof that com cab or radio taxis give pre booked jobs to taxis out of sector, I've only heard rumours so can't comment.


Gerald Coba said...

Another reason Uber should have their licence revoke is that they were operating from New premises in Islington without first having been issued a licence variation.

I now you posted about this here an also pointed this out to the RMT LCDC Unite and LTDA, none of these took any action.

TfL clearly turned a blind eye to what went on and as soon as you revealed the situation, TfL could issue them a licence quick enough to cover their tracks.

Anonymous said...

anon how can i be accused of an unlawful act its TFL that are acting unlawfully by saying that i cant pick up out of my sector if i choose to negotiate a private job as i drop them of say KG who in their right mind would not run 6miles for a £50 pound job going back to there sector .Bus drivers are only licensed to drive their routes that they have been trained for !! but come Rugby days at Twickenham its a free for all with drivers coming from TFL garages from all over london.and they dont have a clue where they are going So is there an unlawful act taking place here as well.

Anonymous said...

The thing is there is nothing. In righting that says a yellow badge can not accept a pre booking out of sector TFL legal team know this as well it's just an advisory and yes uber have been at ealing Turnhan green and god knows where else no one is going to mess with uber TFL are shitting them selfs as john mason said once TFL have very deep pockets lol well there not as deep as UBER as for the trade groups well watch this space for a statement

Anonymous said...

So the yb picking up from vic pk music festival 3 weeks ago insured are tfl in the dock for allowing yb to pick up there

Editorial said...

Anon 2:06

Love Box at Victoria Park, was given temporary island rank status to drivers from Hackney extension and Newham.

Driver from other sectors discovered by compliance teams were reported for working outside their sector.

See article posted 17 July


Anonymous said...

UBER have been at Richmond signing up drivers and so far the word is the works good there promo staff even install the app for you lol now hailo are doing 20% off all jobs in August. Lol how long will it be before hailo start giving YB drivers GB work from what I've heard not long GAME OVER

Anonymous said...

I know for a fact that comcab and radio taxis give work to yellows out of their sectors, because I'm a Y/b with comcab at the moment and I'm constantly being offered and doing this work. In fact I've picked up a few times from Waterloo taxi rank on a taxicard job, probably because the greens don't want this work.
If comcab didn't do this many disabled people in London would not get about, can't see Tfl wanting negative publisity from stopping y:b's taking their disabled customers.
I was also on radio taxis and they give there underground account work to y/b's aswell

Anonymous said...

To the editor.
I got done at victoria park for touting 10 yards from the rank ,I have got the hackney extension. by trigger happy jobs worth ex old bill compliance. no common sense at all. just wants to nick ya

Anonymous said...

You got done because you was not on the rank full stop you're extension only allows you to work from an island rank not 10 yards from it you as a yellow badge should know full well that TFL just want an easy nick as silly as it is being only 10 yards from your island rank with the jobs worth C/O

Anonymous said...

As as a yellow badge u can accept a job from outside your area. u can be licenced for Newham and have a job come in from mile Mile End and go and pick up the fare.
The insurance is to cover a licenced taxi driver to drive the taxi to pick up fares within the UK. The taxi drivers licence however is only valid for London only.
This blog is not well informed.

Editorial said...

Anon8:29, this blog is very well informed, more so than most trade publications.
No one is doubting your initial statement, but you haven't read what has been inferred in our article.

The question we have tried to raise is what legislation (not hear say or rumour) covers the offence of a driver accepting a job, or plying for hire out of sector. And is it incitement if an operator tells you to act illegally?

Taxi drivers, contra to your statement will not be covered by their insurers for a hiring acquired in an unlawful manner, much the same as a minicab touting a job.

Anonymous said...

The blog isn't that well informed ... Having no insurance isn't an arrestable criminal offence! Police will issue a fixed penalty notice or summons you to court ... you can only be arrested if you can't prove who you are and they don't believe you, a power that has nothing to do with the Road Traffic Act! They also impound the uninsured vehicle.

Anonymous said...

As the song goes the judges will decide..

Anonymous said...

As someone on a knowledge forum nearly 15 years ago said, "do the yellow badge , get a sat nav, and away yer go, all of Londons yer oyster".

Anonymous said...

nothing like a good yellow badge bashing to help slow press days .been doing taxi card jobs in town for years and underground work

Anonymous said...

when all these cc,rt, hailo, taxi marshalls are stuck for drivers they can't give us yb's work to help em out quick enough fact.

Anonymous said...

I do not understand why a PH can take a prebook end job anywhere in London yet a YB is confined to his area.

Surely the YB area is for street hails as that is when the Knowledge is required.

You don't need any Knowledge for pre booked work, just look up the route before you pick up the passenger.

If it's ok for PH it must be ok for a YB. A YB is not a tier below a PH driver.

Anonymous said...

Am I the only yellow badge that gets this?

A taxi licence is (currently) a licence to ply for hire and reward in a specified area of London.
A private hire licence is a licence to accept private hirings through an operator.

Each driver is only licenced to accept work under the conditions laid out by their type of licence.

This means that a ph driver can never accept a job that isn't pre booked through a third party.

However, a taxi driver can accept a pre booked job from an operator and accept a booking direct from a passenger, but at the time of accepting either type of hiring, they are plying for hire and reward, and therefore must do so in accordance with their conditions of licence.

The term plying for hire and reward does not relate exclusively to street hails, but to any circumstance where a Taxi driver is prepared to accept any type of hiring for money.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

What exactly should the LTDA take TfL to court for? Courts work on laws, that means acts and sections not "Not doing their job" thats an opinion not an offence!

Anonymous said...

As far as I know it's not illegal for comcab to offer a YB a job inside central London. When i spoke to the man in charge at comcab he said its the GB driver who will report the YB driver for picking up in town and then it was in tfl hands , so I think its a grey area and uber will take full advantage of the grey area like they always do.

Anonymous said...

Uber are giving jobs to yb so what is all the fuss join up and start working gbs trade orgs cant do a thing about it .these people are bitter and twited.just leave the ybs alone and get on with you lifes .moan moan moan.

Anonymous said...

Make the same point I always do. Green badges have been accepting radio jobs - as do yellow badges - well outside the M25 - for years - should they be nicked - course not - it's a grey area - see page 197 of the law commission report which actively supports licensed taxis accepting pre bookings out of licensed area. The law commission accepts it's an inevitable consequence of technology and it would be very silly to stop it and too onerous to enforce. Also it does not represent a risk of harm to the public as it's pre booked - there is a record of it and all parties are happy. Any prosecution would fail as it would fail the public interest test - because only greenies and tfi are interested in hassling YB's - the public don't care.

Anonymous said...

Following Ubers market research - they are going to fast work out that there are a couple of thousand extremely disgruntled YB drivers. They will also realise that these drivers would really like to shaft green badge drivers following the identifier debacle and TFL issuing too many surburban licences. So if someone at Uber gets the right deal together they have a ready and waiting fleet at thier disposal. Cheap mercs - working up town plying for hire via your phone and nicking the odd cash job as there's no enforcement. There are alot of YB s waiting to see if this court case and the meter means it's time for a new job. Get ready green turkeys because Christmas is coming.

Anonymous said...

A notice to all gb,s do not pick up at gatwick as u r breaking the law, wot crap .This a PCO rule not a law,i have over 200 private customers on my phone,so bring it on and try and nick me.I ,ve pulled by CO,s many times and neither been nicked.But many gb,s slaging me off. bullies but not got bottle to have a go a big black tout have they.

Editorial said...

Just turning into an insult free for all.
No solutions no answers most haven't even bothered reading the post.

Many of the comments coming from one IP address

So comments on this post suspended.