Mostly on taxi cabs:
Poor Ed Lee!
Here’s the wiki entry.
And here’s what the SFPD has to say about Patrol Specials, below. I’ll note that the bolded parts are in the original, and really, that’s my whole point – the bolded parts are what the SFPD wants to emphasize, in high relief, as if we, the General Public, are failing students who Just Don’t Get It.
WHAT IS A PATROL SPECIAL OFFICER?
Patrol Special Officers and their Assistants are NON-SWORN private patrol persons and are NOT members of the San Francisco Police Department. The Police Commission appoints Patrol Special Officers and has oversight responsibility over the entire Patrol Special Program. Patrol Special Officers were created under the City Charter and are defined as private patrol persons who contract to perform security duties of a private nature for private persons and businesses within a geographical boundary set forth by the Police Commission.
WHAT ARE THE DUTIES OF A PATROL SPECIAL OFFICER?
Private businesses hire Patrol Special Officers to provide security services. They are private patrol officers who enter into a personal services contract with clients for security services. Typical responsibilities of a Patrol Special Officer’s include: unlocking or securing doors to a business, making checks of residences or businesses, conduct perimeter checks at burglar alarms, providing a physical presence at businesses and providing security consultations.
WHAT AREAS OF SAN FRANCISCO DO THESE OFFICERS PATROL?
Patrol Special Officer’s “Beats” are divided throughout San Francisco. A Patrol Special “Beat” owner can purchase the rights of a specific area to patrol. The purchasing process is regulated by the Police Commission and Police Department. All parts of San Francisco have Patrol Special “Beats”.
Here it is. It looks a lot like this one, huh?
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And then there’s this:
“There is such a shortage of drivers, we are basically trying to empty the ocean with an eyedropper,” Hayashi said. “So we may have recruited a few, but not nearly enough.”
Hey didn’t the SFMTA recently institute an enormous “tax” on medallions? Hey, was that a good idea? Oh it was, ’cause that’s the money what pays your six-figure salary? Ok fine…
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.
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!