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DC Taxicab Commission Begins Field Testing

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

DC Taxicab Commission Begins Field Testing

Two-week operation uncovers rule violations

Contact: Neville Waters (202) 645-6020

The DC Taxicab Commission (DCTC) first field test found that 94% of District taxicabs taken during a two-week period through New Year’s Eve had working credit card systems.  DCTC assigned riders to hail taxis in all wards of the city and travel to various locations within the District. Of the 91 rides, only six credit card devices were described as not working. Three other drivers initially refused to accept a credit card payment but eventually accepted this method of payment. There are 6,693 taxis that have installed an approved credit card system as reported by the installation companies.

Other violations found during this testing program included: 8 infractions for refusal to haul; 12 infractions for providing an improper receipt; 14 infractions for an improper or nonfunctioning credit card device; and 22 infractions for not displaying a Face ID. Drivers will be notified to schedule meetings with DCTC staff to determine appropriate penalties. Fines range from $100 to $1,000 for each infraction and could elevate to notices of intent to suspend. There were 48 drivers who violated no regulations.

DCTC intends to utilize this method of field testing continuously to augment the standard enforcement practices of Hack Inspectors and complaints submitted by riders. Future field test operations will focus on the issue of refusal to haul which predominantly effects African American males and is a violation that will not be tolerated.

In addition to this test program, DCTC Hack Inspectors impounded five unlicensed vehicles; issued four Face ID violations; and cited one driver for refusal to haul among the 26 Notices of Infraction issued on New Year’s Eve. 

The objective of this testing program was to assess the number of functioning credit card systems in the DC’s taxicabs. Riders should be aware that vehicles without an approved properly functioning credit card device should not be operating and picking up passengers. Drivers are also required to provide riders with a receipt from the taximeter. The use of unapproved devices for credit card payments can result in fines to drivers of $1,000.