A taxi driver who refused to take a visually-impaired passenger and a guide dog has had his licence suspended.
The news came to light at a Gwynedd Council meeting this week where members raised concerns about taxi drivers in the county ‘cherry picking’ fares.
The driver had his licence suspended for a week after refusing to transport a visually-impaired passenger who had a guide dog.
At the council’s licensing committee, it was confirmed that the authority is continuing to clamp down on taxi drivers who ‘cherry-pick’ passengers to try to land bigger fares.
The “serious” incident, which was said to have taken place recently, saw an unidentified taxi driver refuse to transport the “vulnerable” member of the public as the intended journey was “too short”.
Meeting in Caernarfon on Monday, the general licensing committee rubber-stamped a rise in the maximum Hackney taxi fare.
The move, which was initially discussed and recommended in July, will see the maximum cost of a two-mile journey increase from £5 to £6 following a request from taxi companies in the county.
But after concerns were raised over the growing issue of drivers ‘cherry-picking’ fares, councillors were also told by officers: “Very recently, we were made aware of an incident where a taxi driver refused to take a member of the public who had use of a guide dog due to issues with their vision.
“In my view that’s very serious anyway, but is made even worse by the fact they were a vulnerable individual.
“Evidence was presented and the taxi driver was contacted, following refusal to take the fare as it was a short one, and his licence was suspended for a week which of course hit him directly in the pocket.
“He could have appealed but chose not to, but this goes to show that we take complaints seriously and will take action where evidence is presented.”
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