The Government has launched a 12-week consultation on the taxi and private hire sector, with a view to providing updated guidance to local authorities that takes into account advances in technology.
The consultation runs for 12 weeks from March 28, 2022 until 23.45pm on June 20. It promises to be a far-reaching consultation, taking in issues including driver training vehicle age limits for EVs and ICE cars, vehicle signage and even detailed issues such as tinted windows and in-cab CCTV.
Announcing the consultation, transport minister Baroness Vere of Norbiton (pictured) said: “The adoption of new technology by the sector and, most significantly, by the public has resulted in a much-changed sector since the DfT last refreshed its taxi and private hire vehicle licensing best practice in 2010.”
“The biggest change is the ease with which passengers are able to engage services. U sing an app on a mobile phone, for example, was something unimaginable in 2010.”
The way the industry works has “fundamentally changed”, the DfT argues, with an expansion of services, a growth in driver numbers and an increasing transition to zero emission vehicles.
“Licensing authority policies should reflect the lead and assistance that government is providing in these areas. It is important they provide the certainty the sector needs so that it is able to plan ahead and invest,” said Baroness Vere. In particular, she said she wanted to see “consistency in standards across licensing authorities”.
A key message is that the government needs to take a position on the important issues in the guidance. “The government’s commitment to introduce legislation, when parliamentary time allows, to enable the setting of national minimum licensing standards remains,” Baroness Vere added.
“The measures in the final version of the best practice guidance, and the statutory taxi and private hire vehicle standards issued in 2020, are likely to be the starting point when setting any such future legislation.”
The DfT is seeking the views of all interested parties, including the public, licencing authorities, operators, drivers and representative bodies such as the Disabled Persons’ Transport Advisory Committee.
“This is a public consultation and we are keen to hear from any other groups or individuals with an interest. This is your opportunity to help shape the final text on the important issues for the sector,” said Baroness Vere. “
“This is a crucial consultation on a range of significant issues and I urge you to share your views to help shape the final version of the best practice guidance, we are keen to hear what you have to say.”
Full information about the consultation is available here:
You can take part in the consultation in a number of ways. The easiest way is to complete the online survey:
Alternatively, you can download the response form and email it once completed to firstname.lastname@example.org
The form can be downloaded here:
Alternatively, you can email your comments directly to email@example.com or mail them to:
Department for Transport
Local Passenger Transport Division
Taxi and Private Hire Vehicle Best Practice Guidance Consultation 2022
Great Minster House
33 Horseferry Road
London SW1P 4DR