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Q: If a PASSENGER IS INJURED whilst getting into or out of my taxi, is this covered by the Compulsory Third Party (CTP) green slip insurance?

If a person is injured whilst the taxi is not moving (and no other vehicle is involved) then the CTP Policy does not provide cover. Cover for this type of injury can only be provided by General Liability Insurance (sometimes known as Public Liability Insurance) which is usually offered as an option with the Third Party Property Damage policy that is also compulsory for taxis.

There was a case where a passenger received a needle stick injury in a taxi and if that taxi operator had not had General Liability Cover the incident they could have been personally exposed to a significant damages claim. Injury risks can arise from minor incidents such as passengers’ fingers getting caught in doors or the boot lid falling on their head whilst unloading luggage for instance. General Liability Insurance is not expensive and can save you from very large claims.

Q: As a WATS OPERATOR, what are my licence conditions?

Operators of Wheelchair Accessible Taxis (WAT) are reminded that WAT licences are issued for the purpose of providing services to people who travel in wheelchairs and therefore must give preference to those passengers. The driver of a WATS vehicle must give priority to people in wheelchairs when required. A WAT can do non-WAT work at other times; however significant penalties, including loss of the WATs licence, may apply if the WATs licence conditions are not adhered to.

NSW Roads and Maritime Services conducts regular ongoing monitoring of all WAT licences to identify the level of wheelchair accessible taxi work undertaken and compliance with the licence conditions. This ongoing monitoring consists of an analysis of the data provided by the Zero200 Booking Service and the dockets submitted for reimbursement from the Taxi Transport Subsidy Scheme.

NSW Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) may issue a Show Cause notice to operators where analysis of the available data identifies that a WAT licence is not being used in accordance with the stipulated conditions.

The Notice to Show Cause invites the taxi operator to make submissions to RMS as to why action should not be taken against the WAT licence. This action can range from a variation of the licence to a suspension or cancellation of the licence.

WATs are also required to operate a minimum of 10 hours per day, 7 days per week as required in the licence conditions. In addition to the minimum 10 hours per day, there is an additional requirement for the WATs to be on the road every Sunday of the year and for at least 2 Sundays of each calendar month, operate between the hours of 7am and 8pm.

Q: I am an operator and I don’t want to change my meter to the new rate, I want to keep the old rate. Do I have to have my meter changed?
Yes. The Passenger Transport Regulations (the Regulations) require you to display the current fares in accordance with the determination made by Transport for NSW and the meter must align with these fares. You don’t however have to charge the maximum fare and you may offer the passenger a discount. The meter must be engaged for every hiring.
Q: How does MULTIPLE HIRING work?

Multiple hiring is when two or more hirers who are heading in a similar direction use the same taxi at the same time.

Multiple hiring can be used during the peak periods when demand for taxi services is high. It is an efficient way to get large numbers of people to their destination in the shortest possible time.

Because the hirers are giving up their exclusive use of the taxi, the fare is discounted for each hirer by 25%.

There is no rule about when multiple hiring applies, however it is a viable option during periods of peak demand.

Multiple hirings must start at the same time and all hirers must be travelling to destinations in the same general direction.

The maximum fare that can be charged to each hirer is 75% of the standard authorised fare for the hirer's section of the journey.

For example a passenger and her friend hire a taxi from Terminal 2 at Sydney Airport and want to go to Circular Quay. The woman agrees to allow the taxi driver to multiple hire, and a gentleman going to Central Railway gets into the cab. On arrival at Central Railway, the driver stops the meter. If the total fare is $30, the driver charges the man $22.50 which is 75% of $30. The driver restarts the meter and takes the woman and her friend to Circular Quay, whereupon the total fare is $44 and the woman is charged $33 which is 75% of $44.

Q: What arrangements are there for taxi services for people travelling in WHEELCHAIRS?

The NSW Taxi Industry was the first mode of public transport to offer services for people who travel in wheelchairs.

Over 10% of the taxi fleet in NSW is wheelchair accessible.

Sydney’s taxi networks provide an integrated and easy-to-use service to book a taxi for a passenger in a wheelchair. This ensures that no matter which network you contact, combined resources will locate the closest available Wheelchair Accessible Taxi (WAT).

The centralised booking number 8332 0200 receives around 2,000 WAT bookings each week.

WATs drivers have received additional training beyond that of regular drivers, which gives them the knowledge and skills they require to assist passengers into and out of the taxi as well as during the journey.

The NSW Taxi Council provides training courses in WATs for taxi drivers wishing to undertake this work. For more information, contact the NSW Taxi Council on (02) 9332 1266.

Q: Do the laws on CHILD RESTRAINTS apply to taxis?

In NSW, a minimum of10% of the taxi fleet is required to be fitted with child restraint.

In taxis, children 12 months or older are able to sit in a passenger seat and use a seat belt as long as it is properly fitted and correctly adjusted.

No passenger under the age of 4 years may sit in the front seat; and no passenger under the age of 7 years may sit in the front seat, unless the back seats are also occupied by children under 7 years.

Q: What is the TRANSPORT SUBSIDY SCHEME (TTSS)?

The NSW Government’s TTSS system provides for a discount of 50% off the metered fare to a maximum of $30 for eligible passengers with disabilities. In order to be eligible for fare assistance under TTSS the disability must be severe and permanent and fall within the following categories of eligible disabilities:

  • Ambulatory/Mobility
  • Vision
  • Epilepsy
  • Intellectual
  • Speech and/or Hearing, or Functional

Click here for further information on eligible disabilities.

Click here for details on how to apply.

 

Q: What rights do PASSENGERS have when travelling in a taxi?

As a taxi user, you have the right to:

  • Decide on the route
  • See the taxi meter
  • Refuse multiple hiring
  • Have the radio on or off
  • Have the air conditioning on or off
  • See the driver’s photo identity card As a passenger, it is your responsibility to:
  • Pay the metered fare and any additional tolls and charges incurred on the journey
  • Ensure you are wearing a seatbelt and ensure any person under your control who is under the age of 16 years old is wearing a seatbelt or other restraint which is properly adjusted and securely fastened
  • Acknowledge the driver can refuse the fare under certain circumstances
  • Pay for any mess or damage to the taxi, at up to one hour’s waiting fee for the cost of cleaning up.

Please let the driver know if you need change from $50 or more

 

If I notice ridesharing taking place, what can I do and how do I report this illegal activity?

We encourage you to contact Roads and Maritime Services (RMS), which is the NSW Government Department in charge of licencing and registration matters for all road users, including taxis. The RMS can be contacted on: 02 9689 8888.

Are there set arrangements between operators and drivers?

Bailees and bailors in the Taxi Industry within the Sydney Metropolitan Transport District are covered by the NSW Industrial Relations System as set out in the Taxi Industry (Contract Drivers) Contract Determination, 1984.

The Contract Determination sets out the terms and conditions under which a taxi cab is to be bailed.

Schedule 1 of the Contract Determination prescribes two methods of payment being Commission and Set Pay- in with the method of payment to be determined by the bailee.

Q: Is it illegal for both the operator and the taxi driver to have an arrangement where the driver takes the taxi for a week or other extended period?

Weekly leases between authorised taxi drivers and accredited taxi operators are illegal.

Accredited taxi operators are required to inspect their vehicle at the end of each shift and authorised taxi drivers must fill out a shift work sheet.

Apart from being against the law, weekly leases undermine the quality of taxis services being provided to the public and can result in the illegal use of taxis by unauthorised drivers.

Q. What are a driver’s rights?

A taxi driver has the right to:

  • Receive the correct fare, including tolls and booking fees
  • Ask passengers to not eat, drink or smoke in the taxi
  • Ask passengers to not swear or act in an offensive way
  • Refuse the fare if the passenger is drunk, on illegal drugs or unable to pay the estimated fare
  • Demand up to one hour’s waiting fee for the cost of cleaning up if a passenger makes a mess or damages the taxi

A taxi driver is expected to:

  • Be courteous and helpful
  • Know and obey all traffic laws
  • Be neat and tidy
  • Be wearing a taxi uniform

 

Q: Who does the Taxi Council represent?

The NSW Taxi Council is the peak body representing:

  • Taxi Licence Owners
  • Authorised Taxi Networks
  • Taxi Operators

The NSW Taxi Council also advocates for better outcomes for NSW taxi drivers, although drivers are formally represented by other bodies including the Transport Workers Union.

 

Q: Who does the Taxi Council represent?

The NSW Taxi Council is the peak body representing:

  • Taxi Licence Owners
  • Authorised Taxi Networks
  • Taxi Operators

The NSW Taxi Council also advocates for better outcomes for NSW taxi drivers, although drivers are formally represented by other bodies including the Transport Workers Union.

 

Q: What is the contribution that the NSW Taxi Industry makes to NSW?

The NSW Taxi Industry contributes $1.15b each year to the NSW economy, provides for 17,500 full time equivalent jobs and delivers up to $20m in revenue from sales and leases to the NSW Government.

The NSW Taxi Industry creates a further consumer surplus or economic and social benefit of $550 million each year which helps the people of NSW carry out their daily lives.

These are the topline figures in the ‘The Economic and Social Contribution of the NSW Taxi Industry Report’ prepared by the highly regarded Deloitte Access Economics.

The analysis represents one of the most comprehensive economic studies ever undertaken into the NSW Taxi Industry and clearly shows that in NSW, the Taxi Industry annually:

  1. Contributes $1.15b to the NSW economy.
  2. Contributes $550 million in consumer surplus for NSW.
  3. Provides for 17,500 full time equivalent jobs.
  4. Pays the NSW Government $20m a year in revenue from taxi plate sales and leases.
  5. Collects around $130m in gross GST revenue for the Federal Government.
  6. Makes a significant social contribution by offering wheelchair accessible transport, door-to-door service for businesses and the elderly, and services to get late night revelers off the streets.
Q: If I notice ridesharing taking place, what can I do and how do I report this illegal activity?

We encourage you to contact Roads and Maritime Services (RMS), which is the NSW Government Department in charge of licencing and registration matters for all road users, including taxis. The RMS can be contacted on: 02 9689 8888.

Q: If I would like extra training or a reminder about how to best deal with a particular situation, what can I do?

NSW Taxi Council offers a range of opportunities and advice for members and offers a number of training courses for industry participants. For more information contact (link to contacts page) the NSW Taxi Council: (02) 9332 1266.

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