The NSW Taxi Council said today that the latest statistics from Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) confirmed the lack of identification on ridesharing vehicles was enabling operators to fly under the compliance radar.
In July 2016, RMS pulled over and inspected 942 taxis, 226 hire cars, but only 33 ridesharing vehicles.
Given that ridesharing operator Uber claims there are over 5,000 Uber drivers in Sydney alone (far more than hire car drivers) they are clearly under-represented in these figures.
Unless ridesharing vehicles are identifiable to the authorities responsible for compliance, including NSW Police, then the disparity in vehicle and driver inspections will continue.
The fewer inspections undertaken, the greater the risk that passengers are exposed to ridesharing drivers working without driver authorities, driving under the influence of alcohol, medically unfit, with a criminal record or without permission to work in Australia.
These are the standards the point to point transport industry has signed up to and we all must equally be held to account against them.
The NSW Taxi Council supports effective compliance and it acknowledges the difficulties that authorities like RMS and Police have with enforcing the law when unmarked ridesharing vehicles are being used to transport the public.
The NSW Taxi Council therefore calls on the NSW Government to emulate the decision by their Queensland counterparts and require all rideshare vehicles to be clearly identifiable.
This will help ensure compliance with government policy for point to point transport and assist such organisations as Sydney Airport to uphold its regulations on access to this important precinct.