For those of you that know your onions, you'll need no convincing of Ubers unsafe practices. But for anyone who has been brainwashed enough to believe Uber has improved passenger safety, I've picked out a few stories for you to ponder, and be warned; a "well it's never happened to me" attitude will not suffice!
Now we all know what it takes to earn the world respected all London green badge, and it's cousin, the suburban Yellow, and if you don't, well shame on you. We also know how easily it can be taken from us. We have everything to lose, but with our current plight, do we still have much left to gain?
In stark contrast, a man or woman with very little knowledge of the industry and with next to no emotional or financial investment in the trade can rather easily attain a licence from TFL and drive strangers around at the push of a button. With endless queues of sat nav jockeys waiting to be the next prius off the block it becomes virtually impossible to filter out the bad Apples. What's a bad Apple? Let me show you...
If I was to tell you that an uber driver, allegedly, physically and racially abused a lady, which apparently included a set of keys being thrown at the face of her baby, you would tell me to stop talking junk. Well this is what allegedly happened to a woman while taking an uber ride in London.
Annastazia Merrett, 25, claims the Uber driver hit her twice – leaving her with a black eye – and called her a “white bitch”. He allegedly also accused the father of her child of being "a slave" because he was a black man. The police were called to the scene and because there was no sufficient evidence to whom may of instigated the attack, as the driver claimed she attacked him, he was allowed to continue with his night and pick up more passengers. Yes that's correct, pick up potentially more victims. Does that sound like the kind of man who has it all to lose, or everything to gain?
Does that sound like a company that has improved passenger safety?
It doesn't stop there. If an assault on a lady and her one year old baby wasn't shocking enough, how about a disabled man being knocked unconscious in a fit of road rage?
Now it goes without saying, we've all probably had an altercation with a cyclist in London. With so many vehicles and cyclists jostling for road space it's inevitable that we will get under one anothers skin from time to time, but for the professional person, it's a non starter to engage in any kind of violence. But for the man who has nothing to lose, exiting his car, jumping on a wheelchair cyclist and punching him into a blackout is all in a day's work, well at least it was for one Uber driver. Apparently the driver is currently suspended, pending investigations, but is this not a case of 'to little to late'?
But have no fear, not all Uber assault claims have been made by women and disabled member's of the public. Footage recently emerged of an old fashioned fist fight between an Uber driver and his male passenger. Well, the fist was allegedly holding a wrench type item, but I suppose considering the two previously mentioned alleged assaults, this is probably about as normal as it is likely to get.
Although these 3 incidents have been reported on in the past, it's a stark reminder of the clear and present danger that the general public are put in, caused by the lack of veting taking place when issuing licences to those who wish to work on platforms such as Uber.
The list of Uber related incidents, some fatal, is rather shocking. Globally it seems this epidemic that has poisoned the Taxi industry has no way of being holted. What is it going to take for the powers to be to finally see sense and realise that Uber are not the saviour of the Taxi industry, and are infact a disease, which if not stopped, will see a complete deregulation of the trade world-wide and put all those that cross paths with it at huge risks?
Transport for London has a duty of care to consider when evaluating the city's transport system, and I am completely shocked that they don't consider Uber as a risk to the general public. The London black Taxi driver and the iconic black Taxi are loved and respected the world over and should be shown a lot more respect and appreciation than has recently been shown. Voted the very best Taxi service in the world on many occasions, it should be celebrated with pride and not dismissed with complete ignorance.
Is there any other industry in the world that London can boast the very best practitioners?
Anytime someone tells me that the black Taxi is the best in the world, I quickly correct them; It's not the Taxi that's the best in the world, it's the driver!
If something is not done soon, then that driver may no longer be around to be celebrated.
Someone somewhere has the guts to stand up to corporate pressure and sort this mess out. We just need to find them.
WILL THE REAL TAXI SAVIOUR PLEASE STAND UP.