News : Abu Dhabi Taxi Operator Receives Complaints about Cabbies
Abu Dhabi, June 3, 2014 -- Members of the public made 1,113 complaints against taxi drivers in April.
Taxi regulator TransAD said the majority of these involved drivers’ ignorance of addresses, taking indirect routes to destinations, improper behaviour with customers or disrupting traffic flow by stopping suddenly.
TransAD director general Mohammed Al Qamzi said that as there were 5.5 million taxi journeys that month, the number of complaints was comparatively low.
During an interview with Al Ittihad, the Arabic-language sister newspaper of The National, Mr Al Qamzi said the number of violations by taxi drivers fell by 700 in April, when compared to the same month last year.
This was because of the introduction of new monitoring procedures and mechanisms, he said. The company also has systems in place to receive complaints and process them within 48 hours.
Complaints are received via the call centre, they are then referred to an investigation office that contacts the driver in question.
Mr Al Qamzi said TransAD uses ‘secret shoppers’ to assess drivers’ performances and to detect any issues.
More than 60 of such undercover journeys are undertaken each week, which are then analysed at the company’s offices.
Al Qamzi said that drivers’ applying for licences must have clean records, especially in terms of serious violations such as running red lights, reckless driving or driving under the influence of narcotics or alcohol.
In 2013, there were 66 million taxi fares, marking a significant rise in the number of taxi users in Abu Dhabi.
A total of seven taxi companies operate in Abu Dhabi, including one airport taxi company and six intercity taxi transport companies, with a fleet of more than 7,500 cars.
The centre has recently launched a service that provides taxis for people with disabilities. Eight especially equipped cars developed in Barcelona are in operation.
The centre received 629 calls for special needs taxis in April.
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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