Twelve councils are seeking to create a taxi licensing agreement in a bid to clamp down on ‘out of area’ drivers.
The councils from the North East region will discuss the regional agreement when they meet on Tuesday 18 June.
Taxi drivers across the North East may face more compliance checks coming in and out of their authorities. These new plans aim to keep passengers safer when drivers work outside of their licensing authorities.
The new agreement would mean councils signed up to the scheme could carry out checks on all taxis, not just those within their licensing area. The move is being seen as an effective way to manage safety concerns surrounding cross-border hiring in the region.
According to Sunderland Echo, Councillor Amy Wilson, Sunderland City Council's cabinet member for environment and transport, said: "As the report to cabinet sets out, there have been recent and national concerns relating to the safeguarding of vulnerable adults and children.
"These are draft statutory guidance and haven’t yet been adopted by government but there is a will to adopt these as local policies.
"This council, as are others up and down the country, is reviewing its taxi licensing functions to further reflect these guidelines and new powers.
“Our review is considering mandatory safeguarding training for drivers and further checks for if a driver is a 'fit and proper person'.
"This North East Memorandum of Understanding is very much a first stage of this licensing review process.
“It is all about ensuring more effective regulation of the taxi trade and protecting the public."
Image: Colin (Flickr)