Plainclothes traffic officers in Shanghai have launched a new campaign targeting the bane of every weekend-reveler’s existence: cab drivers who refuse to give rides to passengers only going a short distance.
The drivers who refuse customers while their “for hire” sign is on will be given a 200 fine and suspended for 15 days, Shanghai Daily reports, citing the Shanghai Traffic Law Enforcement Team.
The cabbie crackdown follows an increasing number of complaints about taxi drivers who are getting too choosey with their fares, especially during the weekends. Since such encounters are difficult for passengers to prove, plainclothes officers are stepping in to catch the offenders in the act. Gritty.
One team member said there are several hundred plainclothes officers working in pairs around the city. (Whatever, we support this cause.) They’ll also be handing out fines for cabs who overcharge, take longer routes and secretly swap out transport cards.
Drivers cherry-picking fares has become an increasingly frustrating problem in the city. A couple of months ago, a man went so far as to sue a Shanghai taxi company after a driver snubbed him for another customer who’d booked through a taxi app. Prosecutors argued that the driver’s actions were considered a denial of service, since the “for hire” sign was lit-up.
The Shanghai city government earlier this year banned all such taxi-hailing phone apps during peak traffic hours to ease such problems.
[Photo Credit: 2 dogs]
WKND continues this Sunday, 12.30 – 5.30pm at URBN Hotel (183 Jiaozhou Lu), with free flow Vedett beer till the keg runs out!