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Re: [NewMobilityCafe] Taxis at night and safe transport for women.

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  • Bina C. Balakrishnan
    Hi Dave, In Mumbai, almost all hotels, and several restaurants and clubs have an arrangement with private taxi operators, and keep their phone numbers readily
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 11, 2004
      Hi Dave,

      In Mumbai, almost all hotels, and several restaurants and clubs
      have an arrangement with private taxi operators, and keep their
      phone numbers readily available. These numbers are also available
      with the security personnel at the door of their establishments.
      In the event that a visitor leaving their establishment wishes to
      hire a taxi, they just call the operators, who dispatch a private
      taxi. This way, the establishment is also involved in ensuring
      that their customers are safe, and the taxi operators and drivers
      can make a little extra money for the inconvenience of being
      hailed at night.

      At our airports, for reasons of security, when a passenger
      arriving in the city hires a taxi, the registration number of the
      taxi, the name of the passenger and the destination of the
      passenger are recorded by a police constable on duty before the
      taxi is allowed to move away from the rank. This is practiced
      even though these are the black and yellow registered taxis, and
      the very fact that these details are on record help to control
      crime to a very large extent. Altho the process takes a bit of
      time, as the taxis with the seated passengers are forced to queue
      up to record these details before they can move away, it seems to
      work, and no-body complains.

      Best regards,

      Bina C. Balakrishnan
      Transportation Planning & Engineering
      Mumbai, India

      On Fri, 10 Dec 2004 Wetzel Dave wrote :
      >We have a problem in London that despite the Mayor increasing
      >taxi night
      >fares, there are not enough licensed taxis operating at night and
      >giving a
      >"hail and ride" service.
      >Most "black cab" drivers are self-employed and we can not force
      >them to
      >operate at night.
      >We are experimenting with special ranks for taxi drivers on their
      >journeys to match a "fare" who is going broadly in the same
      >direction. (But
      >this is only a marginal increase in supply for some journeys and
      >as most
      >taxi drivers live in East London this area gets offered a better
      >This shortage of licensed taxis leads to dangers for paxs
      >(especially women)
      >who coming out of clubs in the early hours only find illegal
      >offering private car rides for cash.
      >Not only can people be ripped off on the price but by far the
      >most transport
      >related rapes and assaults take place in these illegal
      >We are licensing "minicabs" and other private hire operators but
      >they can
      >only respond to telephone bookings or to paxs who attend their
      >office. They
      >are not licensed for street hailing.
      >The National Rail suburban services tend to operate their last
      >trains well
      >before midnight and most Underground lines close at about 1am.
      >Our Mayor is consulting Londoners on the option of Friday and
      >Underground trains running one hour later at night (finishing in
      >the early
      >hours) but with the knock-on of trains starting one hour later
      >Sat and Sun
      >mornings to allow for engineering works to have the same time.
      >We have extended our night bus operation (with CCTV cameras on
      >board) across
      >London and reduced the premium night bus fares to normal
      >day-time levels
      >but even these services leave people vulnerable for the final leg
      >of their
      >journey walking from the bus stop to their home. (This is not a
      >risk, this year we have had a number of assaults and two
      >We are told that Madrid and some other cities do not have these
      >problems at night.
      >London is a 24 hour City and we do need to address this
      >Is there any research or practical experience that could indicate
      >a solution
      >for us?
      >Please copy Luke Howard e-mail: lukehoward2@... and
      >into any reply.
      >Tks (and seasonal greetings)
      >Dave Wetzel; Vice-Chair; Transport for London.
      >Tel: 020 7941 4200
      >Intl Tel: +44 207 941 4200
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