National News

Uber recommendations a 'cop-out': taxis

Taxi Council Queensland has labelled the recommendations from a Queensland parliamentary committee on the new ride-sharing laws a "cop-out.


The committee made 16 recommendations for the new legislation, including that ride-sharing services such as Uber won't have to have cameras installed, with that measure to be reviewed after 18 months of the new laws being in effect.

Taxi Council CEO Benjamin Wash accused the state government of delaying the decision on cameras until after the next election.

"Waiting 18 months before insisting on security cameras in all vehicles is irresponsible and clearly an attempt to pander to ride-sourcing companies who don't care about customer safety," Mr Wash said.

"If cameras did not reduce risk and lead to greater prosecution of offenders then why are they in every other form of transport and indeed used across venues and public spaces?"

Uber released a statement on Tuesday in favour of the measures, saying cameras have never been standard in pre-booked cars such as limousines in Queensland.

"This is a common sense approach that recognises the fundamental difference between a pre-booked service, where the identity of both the rider and driver are known and recorded, and an anonymous street hail," it read.

"It's important to remember that riders and drivers don't need to handle cash with Uber as payment is managed electronically through the app."

Queensland peak motoring body RACQ delivered a mixed reaction, supporting the decision on cameras but saying overall the measures would increase the cost of ride-sharing, which was counter-productive.

The RACQ's Paul Turner said they wanted to "bring the cost of taxis down" for a cheaper system.

"What we're seeing here is unfortunately more burdens, more regulations, more cost put on ride-sharing, to bring it up to the cost of taxis, which is not the direction we wanted to go," he said.

Other measures suggested by the committee were rules stopping drivers doing a shift in a taxi and then an Uber, as well as a register of blacklisted drivers.

The ride-sharing legislation will be introduced to parliament later this year.

© AAP 2017

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