A new ‘code of good conduct’ for Plymouth’s licensed drivers, vehicle owners and operators could be brought in as part of a review of the city’s taxi licensing policy.
The code would set out standards of dress and behaviour for the trade so that passengers can expect a professional service when they book a ride.
It also offers clear guidance to make sure drivers think about others around them when picking up or dropping off passengers, including not using horns in built up areas to tell a fare they have arrived, not playing loud music and switching off engines.
The Council adopted its first taxi licensing policy in 2008 and has launched this public consultation to update the way it administers and regulates taxi services in Plymouth.
Cabinet Member for Safer and Stronger Communities Philippa Davey said: “Hackney carriage and private hire services play a very important role in the city. They often give the first impressions to visitors and businesses and we want them to be proud of our city and play more of an ambassadors’ role to their customers.
“These standards will be familiar to drivers as most of them are common sense and reflect advice we already give the trade – but this code will set out them out clearly, so that there is no confusion.”
Other key changes being considered include;
- A comprehensive new set of conviction guidelines which are applied when deciding whether a driver is fit to hold a licence
- All new applicants must successfully complete a training qualification in ‘Transporting Passengers by Taxi and Private Hire’ before their first licence is issued
- To invite views on making this training qualification mandatory for all licensed drivers – around 60 per cent of the city’s drivers already have this qualification
- ‘enhanced training’ for all licensed drivers such as ‘Child Sexual Exploitation Awareness’ training and ‘Plymouth Ambassador’ training in the lead up to the Mayflower 400 celebrations
- A minimum CCTV vehicle specification
The consultation starts this week and ends on 21 December 2015
All the consultation documents are on our website together with a customer response form at www.plymouth.gov.uk/taxipolicyconsultation.
Send comments in writing to the Licensing Office, Plymouth City Council, Windsor House, Plymouth, PL6 5UF or email firstname.lastname@example.org .
For more information contact the Licensing Team on 01752 304141.