The Taxi Council of Queensland (TCQ) has again pointed to safety differences between taxis and booked hire vehicles after a recent incident of an Uber driver refusing to let a woman out of his vehicle for more than an hour.
The driver was meant to be transporting the young woman on a ten minute trip to Fortitude Valley when he allegedly refused to pull over and then took the woman on a terrifying journey across the city.
The man has been charged with one count of deprivation of liberty and is due to face court next month.
TCQ chief executive officer Blair Davies says this once again highlights the risks of using booked hire services that lack the standard security measures used in taxis.
“We have been calling on the Government for months to reassess the risks for vulnerable people using booked hire services,” Mr Davies said.
“The risks are proving very real, very serious, and the Government needs to urgently address them. It should be mandating essential safety equipment to protect passengers in booked hire vehicles.
“We know from experience that security cameras in taxis makes them materially safer for both passengers and drivers.
“The fact that they are not in booked hire vehicles makes those vehicles appreciably less safe than they could be.
He said the cost of security cameras keeps getting raised but the issue is a red herring, noting that the cost of new technology cameras only amounts to a few cents per trip.
“That’s affordable protection in anyone’s language, and in any case, what price is the Government putting on the safety of vulnerable passengers?
“The time for action is now. Surely we don’t need any more Queenslanders to come to harm before the Government is convinced that it needs to mandate extra safety measures for booked hire services.”