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Thread: New York Taxi

  1. #466

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    ^ TLC will require, if they haven't already done so, for the Vendors to come up with a warning system so that the passengers will know that they are being charged for rate 4. And on top of that I believe the passenger will have to confirm the rate 4 for meter to charge on rate 4..

    ....PROBLEM SOLVED....

  2. #467

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    There were so many helpful suggestions made to TLC when this GPS Technology was being developed for the cabs. All by owner-drivers like myself. Their response was " we don't need to make it more complicated than it needs to be"..

    They do not want to be seen as the responsible party for this scam in any form or shape. This could have been prevented if they had some competent people working at TLC. Maybe they need to look into hiring some retired drivers with wisdom of 10s or 100s years of driving to influence the regulating decisions made at the top, for the better..

  3. #468

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    So the problem is the policing authorities haven't done a good enough job?

    That's like saying the cops are responsible for crime because they don't do a good enough job of preventing it.

  4. #469

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    Kind of but more so like: If they would have done a better job on policy making decisions, they would not have to police so hard....

    The changes they are gonna bring after the fact could have been done at the beginning..

  5. #470
    Chief Antagonist Ninjahedge's Avatar
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    So if they made it impossible to COMMIT the crime, then less people would have done it?

    I agree a bit with ABL here, it is not the responsibility of the TLC to make sure people do not get swindled in a direct manner. they should be the ones to investigate and when trust is awarded to people, it should not be abused.


    BTW, on a similar note, what is the "official" policy to bridge-and-tunnel fares?

  6. #471

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    So if they made it impossible to COMMIT the crime, then less people would have done it?
    The theory here is that only the difficulty of crime keeps folks out of it. But actually, there are honest people, quite a number of them. They're kept out of crime by their own common decency.

  7. #472
    NYC Aficionado from Oz Merry's Avatar
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    Taxi Scheme Might Be Smaller Than Commission First Thought

    By MICHAEL M. GRYNBAUM

    The grand New York City taxi fraud may not be as grand as officials first thought.

    After announcing that tens of thousands of cabbies had cheated passengers by improperly flipping on an out-of-town meter rate, the chairman of the Taxi and Limousine Commission said on Monday that “a fairly significant number” of the incidents resulted in no additional charges, suggesting they might have been simple mistakes.

    Many cabbies apparently changed to the higher out-of-city rate only at the end of the ride, possibly when trying to shut off the meter, according to a two-month sample of GPS data reviewed by the city. Because the cab had already come to a stop, no additional charges were incurred after the meter was switched.

    The findings, disclosed in testimony by Matthew W. Daus, the commission chairman, at a City Council hearing Monday, appeared to buttress the argument of many taxi drivers who scoffed at the existence of such a widespread scheme.

    “We have been vindicated,” said Bhairavi Desai, the executive director of the New York Taxi Workers Alliance, a drivers’ group. Ms. Desai has said the taxi commission acted irresponsibly in implicating such a wide swath of the city’s cabbies.

    In an interview, Mr. Daus said the initial numbers released by his office reflected a “worst-case scenario,” but he felt compelled to alert the public.

    “We never said all the drivers are guilty; we never said that,” he said.

    Mr. Daus said the new findings, which he said were based on freshly available data, offered a “ray of hope” that the problem was more contained. But he warned that significant fraud may still have occurred, adding that drivers found to have intentionally defrauded customers would still face penalties.

    The disclosure of such a widespread scheme in one of the city’s core forms of public transportation rocked the livery industry and raised questions among riders. But some cabbies said they felt unfairly demonized when the taxi commission announced that more than 30,000 drivers — about three-quarters of the city’s fleet — improperly used the out-of-city rate at least once. About 3,000 were serial offenders.

    “The T.L.C. acted as judge, jury and executioner,” Ms. Desai said on Monday. “It is ironic that we should have to forgive them for making a mistake, when they refused to give us the benefit of the doubt.”

    The overcharging scheme unraveled after a driver from Brooklyn, Wasim Khalid Cheema, was found to have defrauded hundreds of passengers in a period of just a few months. Taxi officials reviewed GPS records from the entire yellow cab fleet and found that passengers had been overcharged $8.3 million over more than two years.

    Mr. Daus would not provide specific figures on rides examined in the two-month sample, saying he would defer to the city’s Department of Investigations, which is examining millions of GPS records of taxi trips back to 2007 and is expected to provide a fuller report.

    Cabbies, concerned that their reputation with the public had been seriously damaged, protested that the buttons on city-issued meters can be confusing and noted that the out-of-city rate could be inadvertently activated.

    Taxi officials admitted as much at Mr. Cheema’s administrative hearing in January, acknowledging that rookie drivers could make such a mistake during “their first week or their first days” on the job.

    “These are small buttons, probably a quarter of the size of a telephone button,” said David Pollack, the editor of Taxi Insider, an industry publication. “The overwhelming majority of these so-called rip-offs will be found to be nil.”

    City Councilman James Vacca of the Bronx, the chairman of the Council’s transportation committee, said that Mr. Daus had “left open the possibility that this may not be as widespread as many of us originally thought.”

    But Mr. Vacca, who led the hearing where Mr. Daus testified Monday, said the public needed a more thorough accounting of the matter.

    “What was the degree of human error? And how much of this could be thievery?” Mr. Vacca said. “These questions are demanding more specific answers.”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/23/ny...l?ref=nyregion

  8. #473
    NYC Aficionado from Oz Merry's Avatar
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    Cabdrivers Demand an Apology

    By NATASHA LENNARD

    A small but vocal group of infuriated cabdrivers gathered Tuesday outside the offices of the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission to demand an apology after the agency backtracked on accusations that tens of thousands of taxi drivers had overcharged passengers a total of $8.3 million.

    Ten days before, the taxi commissioner, Matthew W. Daus, issued a press release accusing 35,585 cabbies — almost three quarters of the city’s taxi drivers — of complicity in overcharging 1.8 million rides by improperly choosing out-of-town meter rates. Then at Monday’s City Council meeting, Mr. Daus admitted that “a fairly significant number” of the allegedly overcharged rides were actually charged at the lawful rate.

    “If you say these are facts, you’d better be sure they are facts,” said Bill Lindauer, 66, a 30-year veteran driver. “Otherwise, you brand a whole work force cheaters and crooks.”

    Bhairavi Desai, executive director of the New York Taxi Workers Alliance, who led the rally outside the agency’s headquarters on Rector Street said: “Chairman Daus owes an apology to the hardworking taxi drivers of New York City who he vilified and smeared. We don’t want silence on this retraction.”

    Ms. Desai said that the apparent overcharges were a result of new technology in the cabs, which the commission required drivers to install in 2007. The commission contends, however, that any rate code errors were limited to manipulation of the taxi meter, and that the new technology played no role in them whatsoever. In a number of cases that came to light through the TLC’s latest run of newly-available data, for example, the out-of-town rate button on the taxi meter was accidentally pressed at the end of a journey, meaning no additional charges were added, the commission said.

    The commission acknowledged the sensitivity of the issue Tuesday but stopped short of issuing an official apology, emphasizing that inquiries into the depth of the overcharging problem are still under way.

    “While we have some preliminary data from a very limited two-month sampling of taxi rides which suggests that there may have been a significant number of accidental activations,” said the agency’s spokesman, Allan J. Fromberg, “there is still a tremendous amount of data to analyze.”

    The worker’s alliance also called for an independent audit of the commission’s data that led to the initial accusations, as well as a return to a simpler meter system.

    “We need a simple meter. One-two-three, start, stop, print receipt,” Ms. Desai said.

    http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com/20...nd-an-apology/

  9. #474

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    I see from recent photos on this forum that the Crown Vic is in decline and will shortly join the Checker in oblivion.

    Too bad; the Crown Vic was iconic, like the Checker before it, and like the cabs of London.

    The horde of interchangeable SUV's the Taxi Commissioners have stamped with their imprimatur are neither iconic, nor newyorkish --nor even comfortable.

    "Nihil obstat," intone the commissioners ... but DON'T YOU BELIEVE IT !

  10. #475
    Chief Antagonist Ninjahedge's Avatar
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    They need to standardize, but I do like the fact they are going Hybrid on a lot of them.

    Of all the ones that would benefit the most from stop-and-go fuel efficiency, Cabs would be #1.

  11. #476

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    Now's the time to develop decent rear seat legroom strandards.


    (Or bring back the old DeSotos and Checkers, but with hybrid engines.)

  12. #477
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Damned right ^

    The silly little SUV things NYC taxi drivers now use have no room for legs in back at all.

  13. #478
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    Is that because of the barrier thing between passenger and cabbie?

    I remember even the Crown Vic's feeling a bit tight with that thing in there (especially at the center seat...)

  14. #479

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    If they mandate folding jump seats, everything will be OK, as in the old Checkers and DeSotos, and as in London cabs.

    Most of the time, when the jump seats are not in use, that gives you plenty of legroom; when you choose to use them, they'll accommodate your family of five.

    Come on, taxi commissioners, you can save the planet and simultaneously provide the public with a comfortable ride.

    If you can't ... have you considered resigning?

  15. #480

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    Quote Originally Posted by lofter1 View Post
    The silly little SUV things NYC taxi drivers now use have no room for legs in back at all.
    If you took one of those silly little SUV things and pushed the passenger seats all the way back, you'd be rewarded with great and generous legroom and a pair of occasional folding jump seats at the same time.

    Like a Checker or a DeSoto.

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