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Police and Bradford Council in clampdown
Illegal private hire vehicles have been taken off the streets following a joint crackdown by police and Council licensing officers.
Police officers and Special Constables from Bingley Neighbourhood Policing Team (NPT) along with staff from Bradford Council’s taxi licensing department targeted taxis in the Bingley area over the weekend.
Following the operation, five private hire drivers were stripped of their licences and reported for offences including driving without tax and insurance and having dangerous and illegal defects such as bald tyres.
Sgt Chris Watson, of Bingley and Worth Valley NPT, who led the operation, warned that other illegal cabbies who put their passengers’ safety at risk would be taken off the roads.
He said: “Of the drivers we stopped and spoke to, a majority of their vehicles were of good standard and they were happy to co-operate in the operation. It is imperative, however, that those who are not operating within the law are identified as they are potentially putting their passenger’s 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."
The crackdown took place in Haworth on Friday night and Bingley town centre, Harden and Cullingworth on Saturday. It was one of nine police operations targeting taxi drivers so far this year, with more to follow. Those who had their licenses withdrawn in the latest operation were from private hire firms in the Bingley and Keighley areas, a police spokesman said.
Bradford councillor Michael Ellis, a member of the hackney carriages and private hire panel, welcomed the crackdown.
However, he said: “It appals me that so many are found to be lacking. People are climbing in taxis, expecting to have a safe journey in vehicles which are unroadworthy and which are not even insured, and there is no excuse for it.”