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'They are NOT above the law!' - Readers respond to SA's lawless taxis

2017-02-24 11:26

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


A taxi in horrendous condition has been spotted driving along a South African freeway.

Cape Town - Reckless driving, aggressive behaviour... Minibus taxi drivers are notorious for dangerous road behaviour in South Africa.

Not all taxi drivers are road hogs but there are bad apples giving responsible taxi drivers a bad name.

Wheels24 readers share their bad experiences with taxi drivers in SA.

WATCH: Reckless driving: 6 taxi drivers behaving badly 

Which major city do you think has the worst taxi drivers?

Johannesburg 64% - 15437 votes
Cape Town 12% - 2795 votes
Pretoria 11% - 2651 votes
Durban 10% - 2375 votes
Port Elizabeth 2% - 541 votes
Polokwane 2% - 473 votes

Which major province do you think has the worst taxi drivers?

Gauteng 67% - 19 120 votes
KwaZulu-Natal 13% - 3851 votes
Western Cape 12% - 3531 votes
Eastern Cape 5% - 1374 votes
Limpopo 3% - 758 votes

Have you experienced lawless taxi drivers in SA? Email us or get in touch via Facebook and Twitter.

Wheels24 readers speak out

Jehan Mohd: A green robot is a go, an orange robot is increase speed, and red robot is slow down, look left, right and gooo!!No rules exist, we are untouachabe, so get out of our way = Taxi  Rules

Helen Robinson: The anecdote to bad taxi driving is to be nice to them. Let them in, give them a gap, wave and smile at them. In my experience there's nothing that confuses taxi drivers more than another driver being nice to them...

Juanita: Not sure why I'm sending this email actually, guess I hope somehow it will contribute to something being done about the taxi drivers' lawlessness.

I thought I had seen it all, until today in peak hour traffic and in pouring rain, when a taxi stopped in the middle of a robot intersection as if to turn right, to let 2 passengers out in the middle of the road, only to then redirect it's route back into the road it was originally on.....and continue straight across a then red robot! Shocking to say the least. This took place on Windsor Way at the Bellairs intersection, in North Riding.

Windsor Way on the other hand, has become a dangerous road lately since the JRA has opened the way for Jacaranda to join it. A small island has been built to prevent cars turning right from the new road onto Windsor Way, and of course also to prevent cars turning right from Windsor Way onto Jacaranda. Well, taxis clearly don't know this, as they make U-turns all the time in order to turn right from Windsor Way to the new road, or alternatively use the oncoming right lane on the wrong side to turn into Jacaranda.
Where do these guys get their licenses? Why can't stricter rules be imposed....."asks every single South African every day" ??? 

Isn't there somewhere that one can report the bad driving /number plates to? A while back I recall hearing that this could be done.

WATCH: SA taxi driver meets his match, an oke in a bakkie

Kahmiela August: I had a taxi driver knock into the side of car (no damage at all, not even a scratch on the taxi) because he ran 2 red lights while doing an illegal upturn. I didn't know there was no damage as it had been a bump and my two kids were strapped in car seats at the back. He then shouted at me and send someone to block his number plate while he tried to get away and another to threaten me with. I however somehow managed to take a few photos. 

While no damage was done, I reported him at the police station anyway as the incident scared my kids and had me shaking. I reported him for fleeing the scene of an accident as well as reckless endangerment. I didn't expect this but by that evening, the police had found him and an accomplice, called me to identify them and then advised they would be in contact in terms of a court date. Within a few days, I was informed that both the owner and driver would be appearing before a Tribunal where their taxi permit was being re-evaluated as a result of contravening some Act which governs their behaviour, with intimidation especially mentioned.

So my advice - report them. The regulators are determined to bring some order and they proved that to me - but if we don't come forward because we simply accept their behaviour as some kind of dubious right, not even the Regulator can defend us. 

Phillemon Matabola: We do experience this on daily basis particularly on corner Bellaire and Malibongwe drive in Northriding and I believe that our government couldn't care less about this matter. They are very aggressive if you don't allow them to cut in as they please. They always drive through red robots. 

Andy Burger: Nothing will happen to taxi drivers behaving in a disgusting manner. Cops are on the take. Finish and klaar.

WATCH: Smashed-up taxi spotted driving along a SA freeway

Ciaran Wheeler: Taxi drivers behave disgracefully on our roads without any regard for passengers or even themselves, who can blame them, they lead miserable lives. The real issue is enforcement of the law, and much like our public using private security companies to get the SAPS work done in communities, the taxi enforcement issue needs a body far more effective than Metro Police. Fundamentally the problem boils down to a lack of effective leadership, big guess that one. Also, please can someone fix the current gang-style taxi behaviour at the William Nicol Off-ramp during peak hour... thanks.

Louis Messina: We have our lives endangered on a daily basis at the intersecting of Blauuwberg abs Potsdam roads in cape town. The city knows of the danger yet does nothing about it. The first accident we have we will be suing the City Of Cape Town as they have enabled this dangerous behavior. 

Ryan Paulssen: Every day on Kommetjie Main Road, certain taxi's will try use the emergency lane to avoid the heavy congestion in the morning. Blocking them is the only solution. The police really need to be more visible and impound these taxi's when they are driving recklessly. Fines simply do not work.

Ntsako Davis: Police/traffic cops need to implement something whereby reckless drivers loses their licences. e.g: They record him 5 times in their form for driving reckless and his licence gets a suspension.

Piet Scott: I Would cut there space where the yellow lines are specially at Robots in for them to remain behind the vehicle in front, or the Cops need to be visible where there is yellow line and so forth, look people if you are trying to do the same there is always an Cop, so let’s distance our from that type behaviour, and report or take picture of them, when you are two or more.

Hentie Van Zyl: When I contacted the DA Mayoral committee member responsible for public safety (i.e. Metro Police) and questioned him on the strategy for stop and go license checks whilst 100m down the road the taxis are driving against incoming traffic, I was told to contact JPMD. The same JPMD who sits on the corner in Woodmead and watch the transgressions happen in front of them and do nothing. The same JPMD where corruption and collusion with the taxi industry is well documented through investigative journalists. Thanks for that advise Mr. Son...

It is this pointing the finger to another party attitude instead of making the people who report to you accountable which got us into this mess. It looks like the DA thinks it is more important to check for licenses than the skipping of red traffic lights, driving into oncoming traffic, cutting across junctions from right to left, harassing the public, the list is endless.

Seems like we are just as screwed as under the ANC in Gauteng who allowed this rot to develop. Well if I consider that one of Mr Son's excuses for not sorting this out is because the Metro Police says they are scared and intimidated by the taxi drivers, then I Know we are screwed. 

Ironically I realize the important public transport service the taxi industry is providing . I support the creation of taxi lanes, dedicated under roof stops and measures that will ensure the millions of people using this service can travel safe and secure, but due to these drives and there bosses artifice I don't  give them an inch on the road. 

It was never like this and it is getting worse. Cry the beloved country....

Cathy Mokwena: This morning I was hit by a taxi driver, driving in Albertina Sisulu road just facing the Langlaagte Station, he came from De Vos Street, wanting to join Albertina Sisulu,  he hit my  right hand side rear bumper.  I approached him trying to get his details etc. but he was not  interested. He moved his car from my car and he wanted to drive me over.  I told him I was calling cops and he just drove away. I just managed to take his registration  numbers as he overtook me and drove away as if nothing happened. I'm  shocked, all this happened in full view of other drivers plus he had a load full of passengers. 

What do I do beside opening a case?

Asiya Dada: South Africa needs to implement what is done in the UAE.
If a Taxi driver is found not obeying the laws and rules of the road their driving license is confiscated immediately. And they'v got to go to court, plea their case and there upon be decide their fate.
They are NOT above the law! 

Malcolm Thoresen: As a driver myself, I have had many bad experiences with taxi drivers across the country. especially in Cape Town and Gauteng.

Why the bus lane in Cape Town was not designed on the left side of the N2 blows my mind as all the off ramps is on the left side.Taxi drivers use yellow lanes in a very dangerous way to jump lanes. They go from the one lane to the other without any respect to the other road user, even though they have a dedicated lane.

Traffic congestion will not be so bad if Taxi drivers stay in their dedicated lane and leave the other public lanes to the public.

Traffic laws should be amended and made more strict as far as Taxis are concerned. 

Read more on:    south africa  |  taxis  |  reckless driving

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