Guest Comment from SuperCabby
Personally I do not like these roof top digital advertising signs, but I cannot find any justification for TFL to charge higher licensing fees for taxis that carry roof top advertising.
How can TFL incur higher costs to license Taxis that carry this type of advertising? Are they saying that they will have to check the advertising? Or that the need to make sure that the screens on each side of the roof top sign work ok? If this is the case then why have taxis that carry internal digital advertising not charged more for their license fees? In fact why are all taxis that carry some form of advert not charged more.
TFL do not give any valid reasons to back up their so called "justified increase" other than to say that it will cost them more to license these taxis? How?
The current test is only supposed to be a safety inspection, so other than quickly checking the mounting points to ascertain that the unit is secure on the roof I cannot see what else they would need to do, so a quick tug here and a there should be sufficient to test the security of the mounts which would take all of about 30 seconds! Not bad money if you can get, as that works out to £7920 per hour.
Maybe someone from TFL could explain the justification for this extra charge? Or is it just another way of putting pressure on the London Taxi Trade to extract more money from an already suffering part of the transport network?