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Reader's 11 ways to deal with taxis in SA

2017-05-18 08:42

LAWLESS TAXIS: 'Police need to be more visible', 'Where do these guys get their licenses?', 'Report them!' Wheels24 readers respond to reckless minibus taxi drivers. Image: Michelle de Witt

Patrick Benetti

Cape Town - Wheels24 is often inundated with horrific stories and videos from readers. It's a known fact that reckless driving and aggressive behaviour are just two words synonymous to minibus taxi drivers for their notorious dangerous road behaviour in South Africa.

Though the formula to putting an end to bad behaviour among taxi drivers still needs to be discovered, inconsiderate operators will continue to cause unnecessary harm to fellow motorists.

Wheels24 reader Patrick Benetti reckons he might have a few solutions.

Benetti share his theories with us: "It seems that in the majority of road deaths there is a TAXI involved  - and we all know that the taxi industry has the government by the balls!
 
"Taxis are simply allowed to rule the roads as they wish."



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Benetti says: "If I were a policy maker, I would legislate the following rules:"
 
1. All Taxi Associations will be liable for ANY violation of Road Traffic regulations;
2. All Taxi Associations will be liable for the road worthiness of their vehicles;
3. All Taxi Associations will be liable for the Lawful Ownership of their vehicles - thus they must ensure that their vehicles are not stolen vehicles;
4. All Taxi Associations will be liable for the competence of their drivers  -  they are to ensure that their drivers are legally licensed and that they behave responsibly on the roads;
5. All Taxi Associations will be have vehicles that regularly follow their drivers on the different routes to monitor their attitude and safety consciousness  -  any driver not adhering to the Road        traffic regulations must immediately be pulled over and instantly dismissed, and a report submitted to the Traffic Authorities notifying them of the details of that particular driver to ensure that his Driver’s License is cancelled;
6. All Taxi Associations will be liable for fines received by the drivers of their vehicles.
7. All Taxi Associations will be liable for the damages to other vehicles in instances where their drivers are responsible for the   “accident”;
8. All Taxi Associations will be liable for all medical costs to passengers and any persons in other vehicles if their driver has been the cause of the  “accident”;
9. All Taxi Associations will be liable for all costs as regards the replacement of possessions or other objects belonging to any passengers and any persons in other vehicles if their driver has been the cause of the  “accident”;
10. All Taxi Associations will be liable for financial payments to injured passengers and any persons in other vehicles if their driver has been the cause of the  “accident”, in cases where there is physical disability; and also where the professional services of  psychotherapists are required; and in cases where trauma counselling is necessary;
11. All Taxi Associations will be liable for financial payments to injured passengers and any persons in other vehicles if their driver has been the cause of the  “accident” where deaths have occurred  -  in that the Association will ensure that families and dependents of the deceased will for the duration of their lives be financially secure;

Infographic: Unpacking SA's new bakkie law - the finer details 

Benetti adds: "We have so many traffic regulations that are continually being violated on a second by second basis by incompetent and selfish drivers, and virtually nothing is done about it!
 
"So to believe that legislation against the transportation of persons in bakkies will  "curb road deaths" is being naive and is purely wishful thinking.
 
"Look how drunken driving has been "tolerated" for so long, and only now are we seeing some form of "testosterone" from the legislators.
 
"What needs to be done when a person is found driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs  - or even dagga - is to immediately cancel his driver’s license for LIFE; to charge him with attempted murder; and to confiscate the vehicle, which would then be sold at book value and the money paid into an account for the assistance of medical and other costs incurred by the innocent victims of traffic "accidents".
 
"What we really need is a Government that is prepared to discipline and severely punish any traffic violations - even if it means that they will lose a few million votes when it comes to election time!
 
"It is not a healthy situation when Judges, popstars, cabinet members, immediate family members of government officials  - or their friends  -  are gently tapped on the wrist and asked very politely not to be caught doing this naughty little thing again."

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