Department for Transport
New standards to improve safety for taxi and private hire vehicle passengers
New standards for taxi and private hire vehicles sector will protect passengers.
- government introduces robust new statutory standards for the taxi and private hire vehicle sector across England and Wales to protect passengers
- new recommendations include enhanced DBS criminal record checks for drivers every 6 months
- latest step taken by the government to reduce the risk of harm to passengers and help improve consistency across local authorities
Passengers travelling in taxis and private hire vehicles (PHVs), including app-based services, will be kept safer under tough new licensing standards introduced by the government, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps yesterday (21 July 2020) announced.
The new Statutory Taxi and Private Hire Vehicle Standards which local authorities will be expected to implement are designed to improve consistency in the licensing system, reducing the risk of harm posed to children and vulnerable passengers in the process. It follows historic and serious cases of taxi and PHV drivers abusing their position of trust.
Criminal record checks for drivers every 6 months form a key part of the standards, as does safeguarding training to help drivers identify and respond to passengers that may be being abused or exploited. A recommendation for licensing authorities to consider whether the use of CCTV would be beneficial or proportionate in their areas is also included, which sets out that potential privacy issues must be taken into account.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps yesterday said:
We know the majority of drivers provide an important and safe service for communities, but in light of appalling incidents in places like Rochdale, Oxford, Newcastle and Rotherham, more must be done to protect passengers from those who abuse their position of trust.
That’s why we’re looking to licensing authorities to enforce these rigorous new standards, ensuring drivers are fit to transport passengers in a safe environment and to stop those who aren’t.
We expect all licensing authorities to implement the standards and won’t hesitate to introduce legislation if they don’t fulfil their responsibilities to keep the public safe.
Following extensive consultation across government as well as with industry and regulators, the strengthened measures will mean all drivers applying for a licence should now be required to disclose if they hold or have previously held a licence in another area. Local authorities will also now have to have robust reporting systems in place to make sure passengers feel comfortable reporting incidents and or suspicious behaviour. This follows the Casey Report which found there was inadequate investigation of some complaints in Rotherham.
Licensing authorities will be expected to fully implement these measures as soon as possible. The department will closely monitor progress, work with authorities not meeting their responsibilities and look to introduce legislation if licensing authorities fail to adopt the standards and update their operations.
Latest News from
Department for Transport
HS2 Eastern Leg spot safeguarding21/01/2021 14:38:00
Statement on the publication of additional safeguarding directions for the West Midlands to Leeds section of the High Speed Two (HS2) railway.
Hammersmith Bridge Taskforce meeting, 14 January 202118/01/2021 10:38:00
Joint statement on progress made by the taskforce at its meeting on 14 January 2021.
Consultation launched to improve Manchester’s railways14/01/2021 15:10:00
Consultation launched on improving the performance of rail services in and around Manchester following the COVID-19 pandemic.
UK on the cusp of a transport revolution, as self-driving vehicles set to be worth nearly £42 billion by 203513/01/2021 15:10:00
Report revealing the full economic value of self-driving vehicles in the UK released.
Coronavirus testing for hauliers to continue following decision by French government08/01/2021 14:10:00
Requirement for hauliers needing to test negative for COVID-19 within 72 hours of leaving the UK for France to continue.
Mandatory COVID-19 testing introduced to bolster border measures08/01/2021 13:10:00
International arrivals required to prove negative COVID-19 test result before departure for England.
Coventry and Oxford set to be UK’s first all-electric bus cities07/01/2021 12:10:00
Transport Secretary announces the areas that could become the first parts of the UK to run all-electric bus services.
Government opens further COVID-19 testing locations for hauliers heading to France04/01/2021 10:15:00
COVID-19 tests available at haulier information advice sites around England.