War on Uninsured Taxi Rank in Devon
Reports of an illegal and unregulated taxi rank operating in Newton Abbot, Devon have emerged.
Chris Hurden, Newton Abbot PSCO says “We have had a lot of third-hand reports from people about illegal taxis operating in the area, particularly on Saturday night”.
These taxi touts are not licensed to accept money from customers in exchange for conveying but are still continuing to pick up passengers at competitive prices and operate around the town at peak times. People are being encouraged to report any information regarding inconspicuous looking taxis and drivers (taxis which are not identified as being part of a company or branded taxi service).
So far only a couple of suspects have been identified, but the Teignbridge Council have expressed their concerns further to the police and the search for these unlawful taxi drivers has become more urgent.
A Teignbridge Council representative said, “We would urge everyone to ensure that before they get into a taxi, they check there is a taxi plate on the rear of the vehicle and the driver is wearing a badge”.
The illegitimate taxi service has been charging extremely low fares, essentially stealing business from accredited taxi ranks. They have been identified as having no official logos or company branding on the vehicles, no local authority license plate and the drivers are missing identification.Even more worryingly, however, not one of these illicit taxis is insured. This means if both the taxi driver and passenger were involved in an accident, neither one would be entitled to a compensation payout, regardless of the injuries involved.
2004 Penalty Reforms for Illegal Taxi Drivers
In 2004, it was reported that 167 sexual assaults and 86 incidents of rape occurred from unlawful taxi drivers in London alone, and home office minister Hazel Blears felt more protection needed to be put in place to safeguard vulnerable female passengers. As of August 2004, all unlicensed taxi drivers who were caught working would be added to a criminal database and have DNA samples recorded.
Ministers expressed that most of these cab drivers have large numbers of criminal convictions, which can pose a danger to society. They are also lacking appropriate insurance of any kind and flit between cities, but this procedure of recording individuals will determine who are repeat offenders with unspent convictions. This will make hailing taxis at early hours in the day a safer process for the public.
When working in any kind of industry that involves customers and dealing with the public, it is a legal requirement to have public liability insurance.
Public Liability Insurance for Taxis
If you fail to have liability insurance, you can be deemed responsible if a passenger is even injured getting in or out of your taxi.
Having this coverage ensures if a member of the public ever makes a claim against your company, the legal costs and any compensation pay will be already arranged, fundamentally keeping you and your business intact.
Liability Insurance can Cover:
- Personal injury of a third party
- Damage or loss to the property of the third party
- Death of a third party
- Any expenses involved should a claim be pursued
Having Fleet Insurance is Essential
If your business involves operating a fleet of vehicles, commercial fleet insurance is not just a legal obligation but also a vital step to protecting your company, employees and customers. There are no restrictions on what kind of business you need to be operating in order to gain fleet insurance, and Insure 24-7 understands that no insurance policy will be the same as each business has specific needs for coverage.
A fleet insurance policy will keep all of your vehicles covered against accidents, theft, vandalism, fire and breakdowns.
We can Provide Fleet Insurance for a Wide Range of Taxi Services, such as:
- Hackney carriages
- Private vehicle hire
- Personal chauffeurs
Insure 24-7 offers tailored insurance policies for our clients and our prices can vary depending on the number of drivers you have and what kind of cover you are looking for. Contact one of our insurance brokers today for a quote on both commercial fleet and public liability insurance.