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Drivers suspended in taxi crackdown in Bradford
6:00am Thursday 21st March 2013 in News
More than half of Hackney carriage and private hire vehicles stopped during a police operation in Bradford were involved in something illegal.
As a result of 17 vehicles being stopped, five fines were issued for offences, one vehicle was seized for having no insurance and two drivers are being investigated by fraud officers for possible benefit irregularities.
Also, seven Hackney carriage and private hire drivers were suspended following Monday’s action. The operation was carried out by Bradford Council and the neighbourhood policing team for Queensbury, Royds and Wibsey.
A police spokesman said: “It is imperative that those who are not operating within the law are identified as they are potentially putting their passengers’ safety in jeopardy.
“These checks mean we can catch any defects on cars used for public transport early, while ensuring that drivers are keeping to the terms of their licence.”
Police insist they will be running more checks to ensure the message gets round that taxi firms must ensure their vehicles are roadworthy.
Khurram Shehzad, chairman of the Bradford Private Hire Liaison Service, urged caution with regards to the figures. He said the drivers could have been suspended for something minor, such as having the wrong sticker on the side of their vehicle.
“With seven drivers suspended, the public might assume it is a major offence,” said Mr Shehzad. “But I know 18 drivers were suspended just for the side stickers. If they are minor offences, the drivers should not be suspended.”
But he added: “If they are major offences, it is disgusting and action should be taken.”
Mr Shehzad said the Private Hire Liaison Service was working with the Council and police on the matter.