Taxi drivers are understandably required to keep their vehicles safe and therefore local councils often perform inspections on taxis in their areas in order to makes sure that everything is as it should be. However, it was recently revealed that a number of taxis in the East Fife area were taken off the road due to the fact that their vehicles were severely damaged, making them not only a danger to the drivers, but also their passenger and other road users.
Nineteen taxis in total were taken off the road in the East Fife area, one of which had done over 180,000 miles and had a speedometer that was clearly broken. Another was found to have a flat spare wheel, a torn wiper blade and problems with the brake pedal among other things. However, in nearby areas such as Levenmouth and West Fife most of the taxis passed inspection, which has led council leaders angered over the fact that it is just the one region letting them all down.
Discussing the problem, Chairman Bob Young said: “The failures are coming from one area and that’s very upsetting in a lot of ways because I thought we had a good grip of it. We really need to do something.” Meanwhile, St Andrews councillor Dorothea Morrison said: “About four or five years ago the results coming from East Fife were so bad we had a meeting with operators in St Andrews and they were told at that time in no uncertain terms to pull their socks up.”
“We get report after report about excellent results from Levenmouth and the operators there really should be congratulated. They are setting standards, yet St Andrews is supposed to be an affluent area and has terrible results.” The council’s fleet services manager Tom Henderson was also disappointed with the results, and said: “Although there has been a slight increase in the first-time pass rate from last year’s result, it is still very disappointing that 19 vehicles failed the test, especially as some of these operators have previously been brought to the committee’s attention. As last year, I would suggest that strong sanctions should be taken.”
Even though keeping a taxi well maintained can sometimes be costly, not doing so can not only make your vehicle dangerous but can also invalidate your taxi insurance as well as your licence. Furthermore, if your local council finds out you could also be subject to a fine and have you vehicle taken off the road.