Posts Tagged ‘cabbie’

This San Francisco Taxi Cab “Knows” That It’s Raining, So Why Aren’t Its Headlights On Per California Law?

Wednesday, March 5th, 2014

Seems that this would be easy to wire up, you know, wipers on = headlights on.

(My aging Toyota has Daytime Running Lights but they don’t cut the mustard in CA when it’s raining.)

Anyway, just asking, beleaguered SF cab industry…

V C Section 24400 Headlamps on Motor Vehicles

Headlamps on Motor Vehicles

24400.  (a) A motor vehicle, other than a motorcycle, shall be equipped with at least two headlamps, with at least one on each side of the front of the vehicle, and, except as to vehicles registered prior to January 1, 1930, they shall be located directly above or in advance of the front axle of the vehicle. The headlamps and every light source in any headlamp unit shall be located at a height of not more than 54 inches nor less than 22 inches.

(b) A motor vehicle, other than a motorcycle, shall be operated during darkness, or inclement weather, or both, with at least two lighted headlamps that comply with subdivision (a).

(c) As used in subdivision (b), “inclement weather” is a weather condition that is either of the following:

(1) A condition that prevents a driver of a motor vehicle from clearly discerning a person or another motor vehicle on the highway from a distance of 1,000 feet.

(2) A condition requiring the windshield wipers to be in continuous use due to rain, mist, snow, fog, or other precipitation or atmospheric moisture.

Added Sec. 2, Ch. 415, Stats. 2004. Effectve January 1, 2005. Operative July 1, 2005.

How to Handle Things When Your SF Cabbie Tries to “Surge Price” You on New Year’s Eve – “Failure to Convey” Misdemeanor

Tuesday, December 31st, 2013

What’ll happen is that your SFMTA-licensed hack will ask you where you’re going before you can get in. Then s/he might quote you a flat fee of like $40 to take you to your destination. This is what happens every new years on the mean streets of San Francisco.

FYI, this is called Failure to Convey. Check it:

“Driver Duties During Shift. (1) A Driver shall not refuse, or direct or permit the refusal, of prospective passengers in any place within the City for transportation to any other place in the City, or to or from the San Francisco International Airport, or to the Oakland International Airport, or Paratransit passengers within the Paratransit Program service area, at rates authorized by law, if the prospective passengers present themselves for transportation in a clean, coherent, safe and orderly manner and for a lawful purpose and the Driver has sufficient time before the end of his or her shift.”

So my advice would be to get in to get your ride and then deal with the fare at your destination. I mean, your fare is based on time and distance plus any bridge tolls or airport fees, that’s it.

This rule of course doesn’t apply to illegal taxis or town cars or Lyft or UberX or others similar.- it just applies to SF taxis.

Like this ride, DeSoto Deuce Triple One (2111). It’s a genuine SF taxi. (It’s shown here on the day it killed two passengers coming up the 101 from SFO, but oh well.)

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What I’m saying is that I knows my rights and you should know your rights as well. I’ve always gotten my way with cabbies, meaning, I always get to where I’m going and I never pay a cabbie-inflicted surcharge.

Happy New Year!

CHP “Sting Operation” Nabs Helpless Cabbie on Octavia

Wednesday, October 9th, 2013

See?

Click to expand

For some reason, when the SFPD Motor Patrol hands out tickets and/or admonishments to cyclists who blow through the crosswalks of The Wiggle bike route without breaking cadence (they call this an “Idaho Stop,” even though it’s not), that kind of enforcement action invariably gets called a “sting” operation.

But a sting must involve some form of deception, right? And the cops just stand there waiting for cyclists to blow through a stop sign.

So, what gets called a sting aint a sting.

As here with the cabbie. He was speeding, more than most, one assumes, and then he got a ticket.

No sting involved.

Just saying…

Now MUNI’s Running Ads That Support UberX Taxi Service? Apparently, Uber is “Better Faster Cheaper”

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

Here’s what the SFMTA is saying this week, that UberX is “better faster cheaper” than SFMTA’s regular taxis:

And here’s the SFMTA’s other ad on this topic:

“All right, here’s the new side-of-the-bus ad from our SFMTA, the slowest large transit agency in American history (And I’m srsly on that one. Can you name me one slower? OK then.)

“Do You Know What You’re Getting Into?”

Click to expand

By the numbers:

1. Trained drivers with extensive training [And people say bloggers talk funny!]

2. Proper insurance [A low blow! But yes, SFMTA, you have a valid point here.]

3. Your support of local San Francisco drivers. [Some yes, some not]

4. Driver background checks. [Meh.]

5. Safety and meter inspection [Meh.]

6. Formal process for dispute resolution [Meh.]

OK, now how old are you, SFMTA? Not too old but old enough to have been in charge of this:

Was this SFMTA-licensed driver trained with extensive training to, IDK, investigate fires before people die?

Apparently not. How many fares have Lyft drivers killed?

Speaking of which, what about  the sad case of Julie Christine Day, who was last seen alive leaving the Bubble Lounge on Montgomery?

One of your vaunted, extensively-trained, fully licensed and insured drivers started up his fully-inspected meter and then immediately set about murdering his fare, right, SFMTA?

So, what the Hell?

All right, SFMTA, you might have some good points about Lyft and Sidecar and Uber (look for the orange rear-view window cozies, I’m srsly) and the illegal limos and the out-of-town taxi drivers making illegal pickups in the 415.

But you are biased by your 50% tax on taxi medallions, among other things.

So let’s mark this effort as yet another failed initiative from the SFMTA.

Harsh: Our SFMTA Uses Bus Ads to Attack Uber, Lyft, and Sidecar – Six Reasons Why S.F. Taxis are Better Than Ridesharing

Monday, June 10th, 2013

All right, here’s the new side-of-the-bus ad from our SFMTA, the slowest large transit agency in American history (And I’m srsly on that one. Can you name me one slower? OK then.)

“Do You Know What You’re Getting Into?”

Click to expand

By the numbers:

1. Trained drivers with extensive training [And people say bloggers talk funny!]

2. Proper insurance [A low blow! But yes, SFMTA, you have a valid point here.]

3. Your support of local San Francisco drivers. [Some yes, some not]

4. Driver background checks. [Meh.]

5. Safety and meter inspection [Meh.]

6. Formal process for dispute resolution [Meh.]

OK, now how old are you, SFMTA? Not too old but old enough to have been in charge of this:

Was this SFMTA-licensed driver trained with extensive training to, IDK, investigate fires before people die?

Apparently not. How many fares have Lyft drivers killed?

Speaking of which, what about  the sad case of Julie Christine Day, who was last seen alive leaving the Bubble Lounge on Montgomery?

One of your vaunted, extensively-trained, fully licensed and insured drivers started up his fully-inspected meter and then immediately set about murdering his fare, right, SFMTA?

So, what the Hell?

All right, SFMTA, you might have some good points about Lyft and Sidecar and Uber (look for the orange rear-view window cozies, I’m srsly) and the illegal limos and the out-of-town taxi drivers making illegal pickups in the 415.

But you are biased by your 50% tax on taxi medallions, among other things.

So let’s mark this effort as yet another failed initiative from the SFMTA.

Learning From Japan, 2013: Taxis Everywhere, As Far As The Eye Can See – Much Different Than San Francisco!

Tuesday, April 9th, 2013

Whoa, baby!

Click to expand

And they have illegal taxis too, just as San Francisco! ‘Cept instead of calling them Lyft or whathaveyou, the Japanese refer to illegal cabs as shiroi takushi (white taxis) owing to the concomitant non-commercial white license plates.

Anyway, they’re all over the place out on the streets, not just bottled up at the airport, that’s my point.

Oh, and if the local police in Japan found out that you were still operating AFTER receiving a cease and desist notice, well, they just might impound your ride (AND your whimsical novelty pink mustache) and then lock you up for 20-something days, you know, to teach you a lesson. Oh, you want to call your family to tell them where you are, or your boss to explain your absence, or a lawyer to get sprung? Well fine, just sign this complete confession first. I’m srsly. Whatever you do, don’t “disrupt” in Japan, Lyfters.

Anyway, legal taxis are all over the place in Japan, that’s my point.

Lyft Taxi Driver Manages to Drive Her Under-Regulated Cab / Private Vehicle Without the Use of Hands – Hurray!

Monday, February 11th, 2013

Let’s see here, the right hand is holding an electronic device, you know, the better to Lyft with.

And the left hand, well that’s acting as a cup holder for a beverage.

That means that some Lyft drivers steer with their knees.

Click to expand

Hey Lyft! Why don’t you tell your taxi drivers to not violate VC 23123, you know, like every fucking minute of every fucking day they’re on the clock?

Oh you do?

But enforcing the law isn’t your job.

Hey, I know, why don’t you mount cameras on your taxis, you know, the way the SFMTA does with its vehicles?

How about a GoPro facing forward and another one mounted aimed towards the driver, so that he won’t be attempted to break any laws?

The “sharing economy” demands it, I’d say.

Heh: “Laws Don’t Exist Merely to Frustrate the Business Ambitions of Coastal Hipsters” – Writer Paul Carr vs. Uber Taxi

Thursday, October 25th, 2012

Via Monika Bauerlein comes this take-down of Uber Cab, and Lyft and Side Car and the like as well, I suppose.

A quote of a quote:

Matt Kochman… served as Uber’s founding general manager in New York before he left last year. Kochman left Uber to do consulting for transportation brands and startups, fed up with Uber’s irreverent attitude toward regulators. “Discounting the rules and regulations as a whole, just because you want to launch a product and you have a certain vision for things, that’s just irresponsible,” Kochman said.

Yep, pretty much.

Hey Lyft Drivers! Do You Know You’re Not Allowed to “Profit” by Driving Like a Taxi? Why Lyft Thinks It’s Legal

Friday, September 7th, 2012

Here you go, just match up the Lyft Company’s “Terms” for its drivers with the recently passed California Insurance Code Section 11580.24.

The legislation Lyft reps refer to isn’t legislation at all – it’s a law that’s in effect now.

So, just as a massage parlor only takes a cut for massage service and is “unaware” of its sex workers profiting from sex, Lyft takes a cut (20% currently, but look for that to rise soon) for app service and is “unaware” of its drivers profiting from driving around like a taxi.

So, how much can people earn in a year with Lyft and still not “profit?” $10k? $30k? It depends. It depends on the car and how far people want to push things.

Anyway, read the bold. Enjoy.

By using the Service, a Driver represents, warrants and agrees that:

  • Such Driver is at least 23 years of age.
  • Such Driver possesses a valid driver’s license and is authorized to operate a motor vehicle and has all appropriate licenses, approvals and authority to provide transportation to third parties in all jurisdictions in which such Driver uses the Services.
  • Such Driver owns, or has the legal right to operate, the vehicle such Driver uses when accepting Riders, and such vehicle is in good operating condition and meets the industry safety standards and all applicable statutory and state department of motor vehicle requirements for a vehicle of its kind.
  • Such Driver has a valid policy of liability insurance (in coverage amounts consistent with all applicable legal requirements) for the operation of such Driver’s vehicle to cover any anticipated losses related to such Driver’s provision of rides to Riders.
  • Such Driver will be solely responsible for any and all liability which results from or is alleged as a result of the operation of the vehicle such Driver uses to transport Riders, including, but not limited to personal injuries, death and property damages.
  • In the event of a motor vehicle accident such Driver will be solely responsible for compliance with any applicable statutory or department of motor vehicles requirements, and for all necessary contacts with such Driver’s insurance carrier.
  • Such Driver will obey all local laws related to the matters set forth herein, and will be solely responsible for any violations of such local laws.
  • Such Driver will not make any misrepresentation regarding Lyft, the Lyft Platform, the Services or such Driver’s status as a Driver, offer or provide transportation service for profit, as a public carrier or taxi service, charge for rides or otherwise seek non-voluntary compensation from Riders, or engage in any other activity in a manner that is inconsistent with such Driver’s obligations under this Agreement.

California Insurance Code Section 11580.24 (from 2010):

(a) No private passenger motor vehicle insured by its owner pursuant to a policy of insurance subject to Section 11580.1 or 11580.2 shall be classified as a commercial vehicle, for-hire vehicle, permissive use vehicle, or livery solely because its owner allows it to be used for personal vehicle sharing as long as all of the following circumstances apply:

(1) The personal vehicle sharing is conducted pursuant to a personal vehicle sharing program.

(2) The annual revenue received by the vehicle’s owner which was generated by the personal vehicle sharing of the vehicle does not exceed the annual expenses of owning and operating the vehicle, including depreciation, interest, lease payments, auto loan payments, insurance, maintenance, parking, fuel, cleaning, automobile repair, and costs associated with personal vehicle sharing, including, but not limited to, the installation, operation, and maintenance of computer hardware and software, signage identifying the vehicle as a personal sharing vehicle, and any fees charged by a personal vehicle sharing program.

(3) The owner of the private passenger motor vehicle does not knowingly place the vehicle into commercial use, as defined by Section 675.5, by a personal vehicle sharing user while engaged in personal vehicle sharing.

(b) For purposes of this section the following definitions apply:

(1) “Personal vehicle sharing” means the use of private passenger motor vehicles by persons other than the vehicle’s owner, in connection with a personal vehicle sharing program.

(2) “Personal vehicle sharing program” means a legal entity qualified to do business in the State of California engaged in the business of facilitating the sharing of private passenger vehicles for noncommercial use by individuals within the state.

(3) “Private passenger motor vehicle” means a vehicle that is insured, or is subject to being insured, under a personal automobile liability insurance policy insuring a single individual or individuals residing in the same household, as the named insured, or meets the requirements of Section 16058 of the Vehicle Code, but does not include a vehicle with fewer than four wheels.

(c) A personal vehicle sharing program shall, for each vehicle that it facilitates the use of, do all of the following:

(1) During all times that the vehicle is engaged in personal vehicle sharing, provide insurance coverages for the vehicle and operator of the vehicle that are equal to or greater than the insurance coverages maintained by the vehicle owner and reported to the personal vehicle sharing program. However, the personal vehicle sharing program shall not provide liability coverage less than three times the minimum insurance requirements for private passenger vehicles. Compliance with the terms and conditions of this paragraph shall be deemed to avoid the application of the limitation on damage recoveries set forth in Section 3333.4 of the Civil Code.

(2) Provide the registered owner of the vehicle with a Department of Motor Vehicles Form REG 5085 or other suitable proof of compliance with the insurance requirements of this section and the requirements of the California Financial Responsibility Law in Section 1656.2 of the Vehicle Code, a copy of which shall be maintained in the vehicle by the vehicle’s registered owner during any time when the vehicle is operated by any person other than the vehicle’s owner pursuant to a personal vehicle sharing program.

(3) Collect, maintain, and make available to the vehicle’s owner, the vehicle owner’s primary automobile liability insurer on file with the Department of Motor Vehicles, and to any other government agency as required by law, at the cost of the personal vehicle sharing program, verifiable electronic records that identify the date, time, initial and final locations of the vehicle, and miles driven when the vehicle is under the control of a person other than the vehicle’s owner pursuant to a personal vehicle sharing program.

(4) Provide the vehicle’s owner and any person that operates the vehicle pursuant to a personal vehicle sharing program with a disclosure that contains information explaining the terms and conditions contained in this section.

(5) Not knowingly permit the vehicle to be operated for commercial use by a personal vehicle sharing user while engaged in personal vehicle sharing.

(6) Use only private passenger vehicles.

(7) Facilitate the installation, operation, and maintenance of computer hardware and software and signage, necessary for a vehicle to be used in a personal vehicle sharing program, including payment of the cost of damage or theft of that equipment and any damage caused to the vehicle by the installation, operation, and maintenance of that equipment.

(d) Notwithstanding any other provision of law or any provision in a private passenger motor vehicle owner’s automobile insurance policy, in the event of a loss or injury that occurs during any time period when the vehicle is under the operation and control of a person, other than the vehicle owner, pursuant to a personal vehicle sharing program, or otherwise under the control of a personal vehicle sharing program, the personal vehicle sharing program shall assume all liability of the owner and shall be considered the owner of the vehicle for all purposes. Nothing in this section limits the liability of the personal vehicle sharing program for its acts or omissions that result in injury to any persons as a result of the use or operation of a personal vehicle sharing program.

(e) A personal vehicle sharing program shall continue to be liable pursuant to subdivision (d) until both of the following occur:

(1) The private passenger motor vehicle is returned to a location designated by the personal vehicle sharing program.

(2) The earliest of one of the following occurs:

(A) The expiration of the time period established for the particular use of the vehicle.

(B) The intent to terminate the personal vehicle sharing use is verifiably communicated to the personal vehicle sharing program.

(C) The vehicle’s owner takes possession and control of the vehicle.

(f) The personal vehicle sharing program shall assume liability for a claim in which a dispute exists as to who was in control of the vehicle when the loss occurred giving rise to the claim, and the vehicle’s private passenger motor vehicle insurer shall indemnify the personal vehicle sharing program to the extent of its obligation under the applicable insurance policy, if it is determined that the vehicle’s owner was in control of the vehicle at the time of the loss.

(g) In the event that the owner of the vehicle is named as a defendant in a civil action, for a loss or injury that occurs during any time period when the vehicle is under the operation and control of a person, other than the vehicle’s owner, pursuant to a personal vehicle sharing program, or otherwise under the control of a personal vehicle sharing program, the personal vehicle sharing program shall have the duty to defend and indemnify the vehicle’s owner, subject to the provisions of subdivisions (d) and (f).

(h) Notwithstanding any other provision of law or any provision in a vehicle owner’s automobile liability insurance policy, while a private passenger motor vehicle is used by a person other than its owner pursuant to personal vehicle sharing facilitated through a personal vehicle sharing program, all of the following shall apply:

(1) The insurer of that vehicle on file with the Department of Motor Vehicles may exclude any and all coverage afforded pursuant to its policy.

(2) The primary and excess insurer or insurers of the owners, operators, and maintainers of the private passenger motor vehicle used in a personal vehicle sharing program shall have the right to notify an insured that it has no duty to defend or indemnify any person or organization for liability for any loss that occurs during use of the vehicle in a personal vehicle sharing program.

(i) No policy of insurance that is subject to Section 11580.1 or 11580.2 shall be canceled, voided, terminated, rescinded, or nonrenewed solely on the basis that the private passenger motor vehicle has been made available for personal vehicle sharing pursuant to a personal vehicle sharing program that is in compliance with the provisions of this section.

More Details on Why That New Zimride “Lyft” Pink-Mustache-on-a-Car Taxi Service Might Not Be “100% Legal”

Thursday, August 30th, 2012

Oh, here we see that Bob Scoble has the deets on Lyft.

“New competition, new technology has the ability to disrupt… People who already have an interest are confused by modern technology and there’s nothing we can do. But we’ve had several transportation lawyers  give us their opinion that what we’re doing is 100% legal.”

OH, WELL, WHY DIDN’T YOU SAY SO BEFORE, DUDE? BECAUSE, OF COURSE, IF TWO LAWYERS SAY THAT SOMETHING IS LEGAL, THEN THAT MEANS THAT IT’S 100 PERCENT LEGAL. OF COURSE! AND DUDE, PERHAPS PEOPLE WHO HAVE A VESTED INTEREST IN NOT HAVING TOO MANY EMPTY TAXIS DRIVING AROUND SAN FRANCISCO AREN’T “CONFUSED” AT ALL? MAYBE THEY LIKE THE PRESENT SYSTEM.

“So by making that an optional donation at the end, we’re allowed to make certain exceptions within the legislation.”

WTF, DUDE? WHAT “LEGISLATION?” DO YOU MEAN “LAWS?” YOU SOUND LIKE A TYPICAL CEO, ONE WHO’S TRYING TO MAKE A MURKY SITUATION INTO A CRYSTAL CLEAR SITUATION. IT AINT WORKING, DUDE. NOT ON ME. PERHAPS IT WORKS ON YOUR MONEY PEOPLE, BUT IT DOESN’T WORK ON ME.

“We would eliminate people that are not safe drivers.”

ARE YOU GUARANTEEING THAT YOUR DRIVERS ARE “SAFE?” NOT EVEN THE SFMTA DOES THAT. SEEMS AS IF YOU’RE BEGGING TO GET SUED IN CIVIL COURT.

Oh, here we go, the video.

(Robert Scoble says “cool” waaaay too much, like he’s working on his second six-pack of the day.)

Now let’s check in with Cyrus Farivar of Ars Technica:

“I ran the idea past the former deputy director of the San Francisco Taxi Commission, Jordanna Thigpen. Despite what the companies say in their own legal documents, the judicial system may have its own view. “Sometimes in the law, judges will interpret a statute [in this way]: if it looks like a duck, if it walks like a duck, it’s a duck,” said Thigpen, now an attorney with Cotchett, Pitre, and McCarthy.

OH, WHAT’S THIS? IT APPEARS WE’VE FOUND A “TRANSPORTATION ATTORNEY” WHO THINKS WHAT LYFT IS DOING IS _NOT_ NECESSARILY 100% LEGAL. IMAGINE THAT!

“In her former position as enforcement and legal affairs manager for the taxi division of the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Authority, Thigpen said that she would focus largely on safety. She frequently checked (among other things) not just that the vehicle in question had insurance at the time of inspection, but that there was continuous coverage—as the law requires of taxi companies.

LYFT HAS INSURANCE AND SAFETY ISSUES, THAT’S FOR SURE.

“Under the San Francisco Municipal Code, Section 1105, Paragraph A, Subsection 1, if a court finds either service to be a “Motor Vehicle For Hire,” they would likely be required to obtain permits issued by the SFMTA.

I’D SAY SO. IN FACT, I’ll GO AS FAR TO SAY THAT IF A COURT FINDS THAT A SERVICE IS A VEHICLE FOR HIRE, THEN IT WOULD SUPER-DUPER UBER-LIKELY BE REQUIRED TO OBTAIN PERMITS.

[Lyft and SideCar] are trying to put themselves in this netherworld of regulation,” Thigpen said. “The determination is: how is a court going to interpret the definition of ‘for hire’ vehicle?” For now, company representatives insist they are not a “vehicle for hire.”

YEP. THAT’S WHAT THEY’RE SAYING.

“We’ve worked with transportation legal experts who confirm we are abiding by current laws,” said John Zimmer, the founder of Zimride, in an e-mail sent to Ars. “Lyft is a community based ride-sharing service that is an extension of our existing long distance ride-share model. We use optional donations as a way for drivers to reimburse the costs associated with owning and operating a vehicle.”

WHATEVER YOU SAY, DUDE. BUT IRL THE “DONATIONS” AREN’T OPTIONAL. YOU SAY THEY ARE BUT THEY AREN’T. YOU SAY THE DRIVERS ARE TRYING TO OFFSET COSTS BUT REALLY THEY ARE TRYING TO TURN A PROFIT WITH THEIR CARS, RIGHT?

OK, we’ll just have to wait and see how thyngs go with Lyft, you know, lyng-tyrm…