BCT. Photo for illustration.Photo: Cabman

In the search of the Human Environment and Transport Inspectorate (ILT) for alternatives to the Onboard Computer Taxi (BCT), the choice for a preferred variant fell on Data Central. ILT reports this on its own website. In this scenario, use of a specific device or app is not required.

The ILT has set itself the task of looking for mapless alternatives to the BCT. The government department therefore launched an investigation. The choice for the most prominent preferred variant fell on Data Central. “In this scenario, it is not a specific app or device that is mandatory, but the way and frequency in which taxi companies provide their data on working and rest times (A&R) is. That is positive for the taxi operator, because alternatives to the BCT, such as an app that runs on a smartphone, are probably cheaper”, says project leader Henri van der Heijden about this.

Support “In this project we are working on everything necessary to receive and further process the A&R data online. This includes work processes, organizational design, a central database and the technical connections required for data exchange with taxi drivers and entrepreneurs, the registers of Kiwa, RDW and Chamber of Commerce and with the BCT Supervision Tool. The new working method also requires the ministry to make changes to the law.”

According to ILT, the new system should ensure that the inspectors who check all data spend less time on obtaining data. “This way they can focus on checking data and taking risk-driven action. I also think that this will allow inspectors in the field to devote more time and attention to journeys that taxi drivers have not reported. That means that we achieve more effect in taxi supervision with the same capacity.”

Fair competition ILT supervises taxi transport in order to contribute to safe taxi transport and fair competition within the taxi market. One of the most important tasks is checking and enforcing regulations regarding working and rest times.

The On-Board Computer Taxi (BCT) is currently still being used for this. ‘However, obtaining and processing that data can and must be improved,’ is the opinion of the ILT. The project ‘Realization Variant BCT’ must ensure this. “The reason for this project is twofold,” says Van der Heijden. “First of all, it now costs the ILT a lot of manual work to extract and process data about working and rest times from the BCTs. For various reasons, things often go wrong with the reading, uploading and processing of the BCT files. That not only costs the inspector a lot of time, but also the taxi driver and entrepreneur.”

“Secondly, the State Secretary for Infrastructure and Water Management (I&W) wants to get rid of the BCT maps that are needed to guarantee the reliability of the data. These cards have security certificates with limited validity. The periodic large-scale exchange of those cards is very expensive.”

Support According to Henri van der Heijden, creating sufficient support among the dozens of stakeholders is the biggest challenge of this project. “We want a solution that helps us improve our supervision and at the same time costs the taxi industry less hassle and money,” says the project leader.

All agreements, working methods, regulations and (ICT) facilities must be completely ready next year. A transitional period will then apply. The sector has been given time by the State Secretary to 10 to switch from the BCT to suitable alternatives.

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