Taxis and private hire cars in Caithness, Easter Ross and Inverness have been stopped and checked during a joint operation by Highland and Islands Road Policing and Highland Council Trading Standards Officers.
The operation was carried out on Monday 4 and Tuesday 5 October, and involved both proactive and intelligence led checks to ensure drivers were operating within the terms of their taxi licence and their vehicles were roadworthy.
A number of road safety issues were identified, including tyre and mechanical defects, with three drivers being subject to temporary suspension of their taxi licences pending rectification.
Constable Mark Dalloway from the Road Policing Unit in Dingwall, said: “It's important that the public can have faith that professional drivers are conducting their business safely and legally, and on this occasion the vast majority of taxi and private hire drivers were found to be operating safely, and within the terms of their licence. However, where issues were found we took the necessary action.
“We acknowledge that these are challenging times, and I would like to thank the taxi trade for their support and co-operation over the last two days.”
Mark McGinty, Trading Standards Team Leader, said: “This joint operation gave the enforcement partners the opportunity to engage with the taxi and PHC trade directly.
"The pandemic has been a very difficult time for many and the trade has been operating throughout, sometimes in very challenging circumstances.
"Vehicle safety and driver standards are vitally important in ensuring a safe and reliable means of transportation for the public and business user alike. Where we find these standards to be below what is required, we will of course take appropriate action.”
Mr McGinty added: “I’d like to thank the Taxi and Private Hire Cars that we engaged with, not only for their co-operation, but for their efforts in ensuring that travel in this way is safe.”