Taxis should pro­vide 24-hour service: LTA

Op­er­a­tors must adapt to chang­ing life­styles, stop blam­ing il­le­gal taxis for tak­ing away busi­ness.

Fiji Sun - - Nation - Source: Land Trans­port Au­thor­ity Feed­back: jy­otip@fi­

Land Trans­port Au­thor­ity chief ex­ec­u­tive Naisa Tu-in­aceva yes­ter­day made the call on taxi op­er­a­tors to de­liver 24 hour service to the pub­lic.

He be­lieves the taxi op­er­a­tors must adapt to the chang­ing life­styles of cus­tomers rather than blam­ing il­le­gal taxis for tak­ing away their busi­ness.

“Il­le­gal taxis are do­ing the job of le­gal taxi op­er­a­tors be­cause they are fail­ing to meet the de­mand for service, es­pe­cially after hours,” he said. “There are an ad­e­quate num­ber of taxi per­mits avail­able na­tion­wide to cater for de­mand at all times, so we do not see any rea­son why the taxi in­dus­try should not be able to do its job.”

Cur­rently, there are 6019 valid taxi per­mits na­tion­wide, of which 4,295 are be­ing used in the Cen­tral Eastern re­gion, 1264 are in the Western re­gion, while 460 are in the North­ern re­gion.

There are 322 valid minibus per­mits na­tion­wide, of which 160 are be­ing used in the Cen­tral Eastern re­gion, while 158 are avail­able in the Western re­gion.

In to­tal, 424 Ru­ral Ser­vices Per­mits have been is­sued na­tion­wide, of which 176 are based in the Cen­tral Eastern re­gion, while 142 are be­ing used in the Western re­gion. Mr Tuinaceva said the au­thor­ity did not con­done il­le­gal op­er­a­tors although they were fill­ing in the vac­uum cre­ated by le­gal service providers.

“The pub­lic is forced to travel in il­le­gal taxis be­cause the le­gal ones are not around at all times,” he said. “The au­thor­ity does not con­done il­le­gal op­er­a­tions and will con­tinue to crack­down on such op­er­a­tors,” Mr Tuinaceva said.

The au­thor­ity is also ap­peal­ing to le­gal PSV op­er­a­tors who are op­er­at­ing il­le­gal taxis to re­frain from do­ing so as this is un­fair on PSV op­er­a­tors who are op­er­at­ing within the bound­aries of the sys­tem and are pay­ing tax, third party and base fee. The pub­lic is en­cour­aged to re­port il­le­gal pub­lic trans­port to LTA via free tex­ting code 582 and email to in­

LTA can be emailed un­der the fol­low­ing email ad­dr­ress in­

Naisa Tuinaceva.

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