People can feel more confident taking a taxi or minicab in Watford thanks to a new confidence mark developed by Watford Borough Council.
The mark is a sign that the vehicle's driver has gained safety accreditation through completing a tailored programme of support specifically designed to get the trade back to work as the COVID-19 lockdown eases.
As part of the programme, and to qualify for the confidence mark, all Watford based licence holders receive specialist infection control and risk assessment training and, for those who meet the strict standards required, the council is making a grant available for the installation of a passenger safety screen.
Once drivers have successfully completed the programme, they will be awarded the mark to display in their vehicles as a clear sign to customers they can use the taxi or minicab with confidence.
Elected Mayor of Watford, Peter Taylor, said: “Offering safe ways to travel around Watford is critical to getting back to normal as COVID-19 restrictions are eased.
"The council wants to make sure local people can feel confident when taking a taxi and minicab that as much as possible has been done by the driver to keep them safe and reduce the spread of the virus.
"Our programme gives the drivers the information and guidance they need and our grant offers them practical support to make vehicles safer by installing screens.
"I would urge people to look out for the special mark and make a safe choice when deciding on a taxi or minicab.”
Shafiq Ahmed, Chair of the Watford Hackney Carriage Association, said: “We are really pleased to be working with the council on helping Watford’s drivers get back to work.
"The programme of training and the grant are a real boost after what has been a very difficult time for the trade. We want to be a key part of providing the safest transport services in the town and I am very proud of the partnership work that has put together this package of support.”
The first fully accredited vehicles will be on the ranks in Watford shortly.
Image credit: Nissan Dynamo/Watford Borough Council