Yob gang throwing rocks
TAXI drivers are scared to go to work because youths pelt their cabs with stones, bricks and bottles.
For the past six months, cabbies in Middleton town centre say they have been targeted by large groups of teenagers around 14 to 16 years old, who throw ‘anything they can find’ at their cars.
Abdul Rahim, aged 40, who has been a taxi driver in Middleton for the past four to five years, said the experience is ‘ really frightening’.
He added: “As soon as they see a taxi coming they start chucking stones, bricks, bottles, anything they can find.
“It’s really dangerous, you’re driving and something comes from nowhere. I’ve got two big dents and I’ll have to pay to fix them myself. I just can’t afford it.
“It’s not like you can confront the kids, when there’s a big group of them and they start coming towards you, it’s threatening.
“There are at least 10 to 15 of them.”
Abdul, who works for Connect Cars, based on Wood Street, Middleton, says he and other drivers have reported the issue to police, but don’t feel any action is being taken.
“Sometimes I’m scared to go out,” Adbul, who lives in Oldham, added.
“The police gave me an incident number and had a walk around the area, but they didn’t see anything. Something has to be done.”
Fellow cabbie Khizar Rehman, 35, who has worked for Connect Cars for almost 10 years, said: “Kids are throwing stones and eggs almost every night, trying to break cars’ windows and bodies. It’s hard to work in this situation. We can’t trace them, we can’t fight with them.”
Khalil Ahmad, aged 50, of Greave Avenue, Rochdale, has worked for Connect Cars for three years. He added: “They throw stones and eggs on my minibus. We are really scared to drive in night time. It’s not safe for us and the customers.”
Azher Hussain, an operator for Connect Cars, says the problem affects drivers from all companies and added that ‘this is causing drivers to not want to work and to go home early from shifts’.
The 23-year-old from Rochdale claims that the worst areas for attacks from youths are around Natwest Bank and the McDonald’s car park, as well as Mount Road, Grimshaw Lane and Mainway.
“Youths gather and throw stones and abuse at taxi drivers,” he added. “Recently they are putting paint on taxis that are parked up. All our drivers feel helpless.”
Taxi driver Khizar Rehman, who is fed up of youths damaging his cab by throwing stones, bricks and bottles