Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Taxi and private hire vehicle licensing in England & Wales

This paper sets out the licensing arrangements for taxis and private hire vehicles and their drivers and the enforcement of those licences. It also looks at some of the issues currently of concern to the industry and licensing authorities.

As taxi licensing is devolved in Scotland and Northern Ireland this paper only deals with England and Wales. Once the Wales Bill becomes law, licensing will also be devolved in Wales and this paper will be amended to cover England only.

The present law varies depending where one is. The licensing conditions that are applied to taxis and PHV drivers and the local conditions of vehicle fitness are for each local licensing authority to decide, so can vary considerably from area to area.

In England and Wales, outside London, taxis are licensed by district councils under the Town Police Clauses Act 1847or that Act as amended by the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976. All taxis and their drivers must be licensed. Private hire vehicles (PHVs), sometimes referred to as minicabs, drivers and operators are subject to licensing if a district council has adopted Part II of the 1976 Act (most have) or has similar provisions contained in a local Act.
In London, the taxi legislation dates back to the nineteenth century, but the main licence conditions are made under the London Cab Order 1934. The minicab trade in London is licensed by regulations made under the Private Hire Vehicles (London) Act 1998.
In Scotland taxis and PHVs are licensed under Part II of the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982, as amended. Licensing works in much the same way as in England and Wales.
In Northern Ireland taxis are licensed under the Taxis Act (Northern Ireland) 2008 and PHVs
The legal framework in England and Wales, including London, was reviewed in 2012-14 by the Law Commission, which published recommendations and a draft Bill in May 2014. The Government has yet to publish a response to this and indicate whether it intends to implement the wholesale reform proposed by the Commission. The Coalition Government made minor changes to the law in the Deregulation Act 2015. The Wales Bill includes proposals to devolve responsibility for taxi licensing in Wales.

Both the taxi and private hire industries are facing challenges from new technology, and from legislative change, causing concern and anger amongst a number of operators and drivers. This is a particular issue in London where Uber has been subject to legal challenge and its use by PHV drivers in London has proven deeply controversial.

The issue of quantity restrictions is dealt with in a separate note (SN2772). Information on other roads- and traffic-related issues can be found on the Roads Topical Page of the Parliament website.

Commons Briefing papers SN02005
Author: Louise Butcher
Topic: Roads
Download the full report
Taxi and private hire vehicle licensing in England & Wales (   PDF, 501.12 KB)

Thursday, 11 May 2017

Advice From An Ex Copper About Video Evidence ... By Jason Clauson.

I would like to offer some advice re video evidence.. as a ex Copper (and now GB) i have dealt numerous times with video evidence ....and behaviour WHEN being videoed.

Best advice ... SPEAK ... you may see whats happening on footage but as you all know different interpretations or releasing footage after a certain event can change what people think.

So .... commentate .... if you are dealing with a vehicle ... say out loud  the reg number .. location ..  number of occupants .. description of driver. 

So if its not evident on tape it is because you said it.

Swearing in the heat of the moment cant be helped ... but staying calm does help. Deep breaths. Dont focus on one thing ... keep aware of all around you.

Personal confrontation .... say lots ....

'Keep away' or 'keep back' ... shows the direction of aggression .. ie towards you..

If you raise your hands ... do it open handed ... it shows no weapon .. shows less aggression coupled with verbal description of get back or get away .. so if you are being filmed by them or us you are not seen as an aggressor.. 

If attacked ...by all and any means defend yourself

• 1st rule ... RUN AWAY .... cant get hurt if you aint there.

• 2nd rule ... if you cant do 1st rule ... strike and retreat ... 

• 3rd Rule ... DONT GO TO GROUND ... you are too vulnerable..

I have won cases on video evidence because of clear and unambiguous verbals.

Speaking as someone who was injured many times on duty in my 30yrs including knife wounds I know my actions saved me from much worse injuries ..

Lets be safe out there and back eachother up whenever we can.

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