A Nottingham private hire driver was found to be operating with a make-shift, DIY partition made out of planks of wood and a sheet of plastic.
Nottingham City Council Licensing stopped the driver after noticing the astonishing attempt to make a screen between the rear seats and the front.
In a picture posted on the official Twitter account of Nottingham City Council Licensing (@NCCLicensing), two planks of wood can be seen wedged within the roof handles holding a sheet of clear plastic to the underlining of the roof.
A spokesperson for NCC Licensing said: "Drivers - please don't make your own partition screens, go to our website at Nottingham city.gov.uk/information, for information on where to buy one. (Yes, they really are planks of wood)."
Nottingham City Council issued the following advice: “In light of the COVID-19 virus and the impact it is having on the private hire trade, Nottingham City Council Licensing is happy to work with the trade about their concerns, assisting where possible to mitigate the risks to driver and passenger.
“In response to requests from the trade asking if it is acceptable to install a screen in between the rear passenger compartment and the driver, The Council’s Licensing Authority is happy to permit, as a temporary measure, the installation of a screen.
"However the screen:
Must not be permanently installed in the vehicle;
Must not have a solid frame to the screen;
Must only be fitted by way of fastenings that can be removed from the vehicle when the screens are no longer permitted.
Must be fitted in such a way so as not to affect the structural integrity of the vehicle, or interfere with any manufacturer fitted safety equipment e.g. air bags;
Must not wrap around the driver seat and create a partition between the two
front seats, in addition to the rear seating area.
Must be from a recognised supplier.
The film/sheet used MUST be clear and transparent and can ONLY by fitted across the rear of both front seats, creating a partition between the front and rear seating area of the vehicle.
"If you would like to use a supplier that isn’t currently listed, please email firstname.lastname@example.org their details in order that we can check suitability of the product.
"Process to be followed when wishing to fit a Temporary Screen
"If any private hire driver wishes to fit a temporary protective screen in their vehicle they
Notify the Licensing Team of their intention to fit a screen by emailing email@example.com together with;
Proof from their insurer that fitting the screen will not result in their insurer refusing to cover the vehicle and;
Your agreement to remove the screen within a maximum of 21 days after the current social distancing restrictions relating to COVID-19 have been removed."