Uber to cover fines issued to London drivers
Published Friday, October 2, 2015 6:16PM EDT
Uber is finding new ways of attracting and retaining it's drivers, and it's only adding to the frustration of licensed cab drivers in our city.
Responding to a question about tickets and upcoming regulations, Uber Canada Tweeted, "While getting a ticket is very unlikely, we will stand by our drivers and take care of any tickets."
That answer has has taxi drivers like Adil Ahmed, who has been behind the wheel for 20 years, frustrated.
He says, "There are just no rules for them - for Uber - and it's not fair...Sometimes you get a bus from Toronto and only one or two people come to us. The rest go to waiting cars and we know it's Uber."
Ahmed and his collegues were happy to hear the city has been ticketing Uber drivers, but are concerned that those tickets may be covered.
In a statement to CTV London, Uber communications associate Susie Heath says, "We don't believe that the burden of enforcement should fall on individual drivers and Uber will support our driver partners fully."
That's not a position that surprises Councillor Josh Morgan.
"It's kind of what I expected, and why I moved towards pushing for increased enforcement in this area...We know there are more drivers in the city now, we know we know that there are more growing every day, and the time to try to get some compliance is now."
But paid-for tickets are not going to stop bylaw enforcement officers who already conducted a two-day blitz on Uber drivers.
Orest Katolyk, bylaw enforcement manager, says, "We laid 29 charges against vehicle owners and drivers for operating vehicle-for-hire service that is unlicensed."
And even if Uber pays the fines, Katolyk says drivers may still have to answer to their insurance company.
"And if they are not telling their insurer that they are driving commercially, then they may face issues under other provincial legislation."
But Uber adds, "We will always stand behind our hard-working community of driver partners in London and believe that a regulatory solution is the best path forward."