Wednesday, August 26, 2015

How Much Longer Can London Traffic Absorb 700 Extra Private Hire Vehicles Every Week?

Since 2013 the number of Private Hire Drivers on London's streets, has increased by 25.9%, to a staggering 85,742, even though the number of London PH operators has fallen by 5%. 

At present TfL are possessing over 2,000 new PH driver applications a month.

By comparison, over the same period of time, the number of Central London Taxi driver new licenses only rose by 1.5%.

   DfT statistics March 2013-March 2015

Smart phone based Uber, who soft launched in 2012, have around 20,000 drivers in London and are presently expanding at a rate of 2,000 extra vehicles every month. Apart from the large amount of new licensees, the app is also recruiting from existing licensed PH drivers.

 Uber’s CEO, Travis Kalanick hopes to increase their vehicular presence in London to 42,000 by March 2016. This would then amount to more than half of all London's PHV licences based on today’s figures.

Uber's expansion will soon see the number of Uber drivers overtaking the number of official London Taxis, which is already the case in New York. However, it should be noted that PHV drivers outnumbering those in hackney carriages is not a new trend.

Taxis and PHVs require a licence for both the driver and the vehicle. In total there were 297,600 licensed drivers in England with 103,900 (35%) of those operating in London. About three-quarters of the licensed drivers in the capital are for PHVs, compared with taxi-only drivers.

Bad Air Problem :

There’s no doubt London has a serious problem when it comes to air quality. Last year the European Commission started legal action against the U.K. for breaching pollution targets, specifically associated with nitrogen dioxide (NO2, a toxic byproduct of car engine and exhaust fumes combining with oxygen).

London is reported to have the highest levels of NO2 of any European capital city. London’s city authority website itself notes that “most” air pollution in London is caused by road transport and domestic, along with commercial heating systems, and recommends that businesses encourage employees to use public transport, walk or cycle to work.

“City-dwellers are particularly exposed, as most nitrogen dioxide originates in traffic fumes,” the EC noted in a press release detailing its legal action against the U.K., adding: “Nitrogen dioxide is the main pre-cursor for ground-level ozone causing major respiratory problems and leading to premature death.”

A study, published this July, of the health effects of NO2 and particulate matter pollution, commissioned by the Major of London and carried out by King’s College London using 2010 data, reported a higher health impact than the previously estimated 5,900 annual deaths associated with NO2 long term exposure in 2010. Recent reports now show associated deaths as high as 9,000.

       Images tweeted by Mayoral candidate Cristian Wolmar.

Inspite of being told newer vehicles create increased levels of NO2, Mayor Boris Johnson still insisted on introducing an age limit on Taxis, removing older less polluting FX4, TX1 and TX2 models and replacing with newer more polluting vehicles.

If the huge health costs associated with traffic fumes in urban centers weren’t bad enough, the U.K. is facing EC fines of up to £300 million for breaching air quality standards.

What’s clear is that the continued increase in the quantity of vehicles in conjunction with the reduction of space on London’s roads is not compatible with meeting European air quality standards.


Anonymous said...

Only got yourselves to blame. The muppets who run the KOL haven't helped either. Yellow badges been posting on here for years no green badges in town on a Friday and Saturday night. There was a gaping hole as Londons night time economy boomed and the population exploded. Should have been a green night time licence introduced with a quickie for yellow badges. Enough cabs might have seen TFL not so keen to embrace UBER. But you stuck your heads in the sand and thought it was very amusing to smash yellow stickers everywhere and finish the job off for TFL in the suburbs. So UBER came and filled the hole. Your all finished - the game is dead - and what's more amusing is that 24000 of you couldn't organise a drinks evening at a local brewery to save your asses. Still there are now plenty of orange lights in town on a Friday and Saturday!! Welcome to yellow badge world where the reality is - driving a cab is just another shit job. Well done to you all!!!!!!!!

Veritas said...

Anon. 2.28

If the work was there at night as you claim, why, oh, why did you not just do the Green Badge (forget any short cuts)?
You could have worked all the nights you wanted and so called earned bundles, I have worked nights for years and you have a somewhat inaccurate picture.

Uber is nothing to do with any demand and supply issue, it's breaking the law, has political influence and recognises that TfL is a weak authority.

Corruption? Incompetence? Indolence? Who knows? Be sure though that the truth will come out.

chris said...

nice one veritas this anonymous is a sad man always gloom pity he never gives his name.

Anonymous said...

2.28. With a quiky night time knowledge on Friday and sat . It would have been just another shit job years ago . We as green badges suffered when they gave island ranks like putney to yellows that's what has watered the black cab trade down . Half of us with no london knowledge and working uninsured out of sector . No better than a fake rolex .

Anonymous said...

Jim bit of custered on it there mate
I saw all the articles and the PH figures released by the DfT show 62,754 .

Editorial said...

No custard there at all Mate!

The DfT clearly state their figures refer to PHVs, that's Private Hire Vehicles.

My figures give the most recent number of drivers, currently holding a Private Hire Licence.

Some of these vehicles have teams of up to three drivers, with vehicles working 24 hours a day.

Hence the reason so many are bursting into flames.

Anonymous said...

Out of the 1500 new mini cabs a month , how many are registered with the tax man , and have hired an accountant , I would like to see the figures . It's all credit work so the tax man and benifits office could easy check .

Anonymous said...

Why would TFL stop giving out (selling) PHV license's?The more they sell the more they make.They could not care less about traffic congestion.let's hope Ubend get 100,000 driver's causing gridlock.Most of the MUG'S driving for them cannot work out that when you take off your overhead's they are earning peanut's.

Anonymous said...

To the Yellow a Badge who is perturbed about his posts not being published.

It doesn't matter that you speak your mind without swearing, the whole idea of a comments section is for you to comment about the content of the post, not solely for you to continue your one man epic slagging off of 21,000 green badges.

If you just want to criticise fellow drivers start your own blog of use the forum.

Should you have something constructive or interesting to say about the posts you comment on, it will get published....its that simple!