Research has shown that over 2000 percent of taxi drivers in Amsterdam have was involved in a criminal case for three years. According to traffic alderman Egbert de Vries, this study once again makes it clear that something has to change. He wants to adjust the ‘outdated’ taxi rules and have regular checks carried out to ensure compliance with the rules.
From the investigation by Bureau Beke it appears that the drivers were mainly involved in or suspected of traffic and violent crimes. In addition, taxis are also regularly used for the transport of drugs, money and criminals. The municipality sees several reasons for this. “No unambiguous rules for the entire consumer taxi market, many fortune seekers on the taxi market in pre-corona times who are difficult to generate a reasonable income in a bona fide way, or as Beke formulates: ‘more supply than demand increases the risk of criminal offenses. ‘”, says de Vries.
What further, according to the alderman, contributes to the negative outcome of the investigation is that the national taxi rules are not enforced enough in the city. This while the collaboration between the Human Environment and Transport Inspectorate (ILT), the police and the municipality was recently expanded for better taxi supervision and there are so-called taxihosts are enabled. De Vries is pleased with this, but states that the campaigns – which take place once or twice a month – are still insufficient to ensure that all drivers adhere to the basic rules for reliable taxi transport.
Adapting rules to ‘new reality’ If the probability of being caught is too low, the risk of sliding into subversive activities according to him. “This is also apparent from Beke’s report. We want the national taxi rules for consumer transport to be regularly checked and enforced on the outskirts of the city. This requires not only the already existing good cooperation with the ILT and the police, but also adequate regulations.”
De Vries would therefore like the taxi rules in the Passenger Transport Act 2020 are adapted to what he calls “the new reality.” “Ordered transport is dominant, the rules of the Wp2000 are outdated. After all, the law dates from the time when, for example, there were no taxi apps yet.” In addition, the Wp2000 gives municipalities too little space, according to the alderman, to be able to provide reliable consumer taxi transport themselves.
New taxi system can provide significant improvement He also thinks one set of rules is necessary for reliable consumer transport. “We want no distinction to be made between boarding transport and ordered transport. This is because most drivers are active in both markets every day and the traveler does not know the difference.” Furthermore, he believes that taxis on the outskirts of the city should be checked every day and national enforcement should be available in case of violations.
One new Amsterdam street taxi system is being rolled out in . De Vries is convinced that this modified system can significantly improve the situation on the Amsterdam taxi market. “The distinction between boarding transport and ordered transport will be removed and we will improve the quality of life in busy areas of the city with access rules for all taxis.” However, the municipality does not have the authority to enforce that all taxis comply with the rules of the Wp2000, he explains. from. “That is why we want to further intensify the cooperation with the legislator and our chain partners in the coming year.”
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