Taxi licensing

*Important Notice – Aylesbury Vale Area*

Covid-19 update

 

Help stop the spread:

  • Clean the frequently-touched surfaces in your vehicle between passengers (handles and seats)
  • Passengers travelling in taxis and private hire vehicles must wear a face covering, unless they are officially exempt from doing so because of their age, health or for disability reasons (you do not have a legal right to ask for proof if they tell you they are exempt)
  • Drivers are not required to wear face coverings but it is recommended they do so where possible, especially where they are unable to maintain social distancing
  • Isolate if you or someone you live with develops coronavirus symptoms

Further guidance about using taxis during the coronavirus pandemic can be found on the gov.uk website.

Further advice and guidance for residents and business is available from our coronavirus webpage.

In addition, operators are advised to download the action cards produced by Public Health England which explain what actions need to be taken if taxi or private hire businesses are made aware of two or more confirmed cases within the previous 14 days.

Second National Lockdown

We will continue to accept both new and renewal driver applications from 5 November 2020.  

New drivers are required to attend the Council offices in person for identity document checks and English language tests.  

Drivers applying to renew their licences must continue to apply before their current licence expires but document checks will be conducted online.  

We will continue to operate the new vehicle testing station at Pembroke Road for MOTs and licence condition compliance checks for all new and renewing vehicle licences. 

Please read the Enhanced Vehicle Inspection and MOT Vehicle Inspection - Driver Guidelines which includes a location map for the new testing station and Covid-19 guidance for drivers attending the site.

You must:

  • Report to reception when you arrive
  • Attend alone – no passengers or children with you

The new building and the area outside of the reception is a NO SMOKING site.

Protective Screens in private hire vehicles and taxis.

We have received a number of requests from owners who wish to install protective screens in their vehicles to help prevent the spread of Covid-19.  There is currently limited evidence about how effective these screens are in reducing the transmission of the virus.  Screens, along with other surfaces within the vehicle, require frequent cleaning.  The installation of screens can also introduce an additional risk to driver and passenger safety, particularly if the vehicle is involved in an accident.   

Any material change to the vehicle must first be approved by the Council to ensure vehicles remain safe.  Should you wish to make a request to install a protective screen, please contact the taxi licensing team with the information detailed below.  Unfortunately we will not be able to consider any request without this information.  

Information required:

  • Evidence that the product is compliant with government and industry regulations, for example the Road Vehicle (Construction and Use) Regulations and relevant safety, UK and European Community (EC) legislation.
  • Evidence that the product has been tested to relevant EU standards and approved by an appropriate certification organisation.
  • Confirmation that the screen will be fitted by a competent professional in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Detailed specifications of the screen construction.
  • Screen design that does not impede the driver’s vision, movement, or communication with passengers, or the driver or passenger access or egress to the vehicle.
  • Confirmation that the vehicle insurers will cover the modifications made to the vehicle.
  • Confirmation from the manufacturer that the installation does not compromise the integrity of the vehicle’s structure and safety features.
  • A written procedure detailing how the screen is cleaned in between customers.

 

Face coverings

It is now the law that passengers travelling on public transport, including taxis and private hire vehicles, must wear a face covering.  Some people don’t have to wear a face covering because of their age, health or disability reasons.  School transport services are also excluded from the requirement.  Drivers are not legally required to wear face coverings but they are urged by the Department for Transport to do so where possible, especially where they are unable to maintain social distancing. 

We recommend that operators make customers aware in advance of any changes to their usual practices in response to Covid-19.

 

We would like to hear your thoughts on our draft Taxi Licensing Policy

The Policy sets out how we propose to regulate taxis (hackney carriage vehicles) and private hire vehicles across Buckinghamshire, excluding Milton Keynes.

The Policy incorporates national legislation and best practice. It also reflects the feedback we received to our recent public survey.

Our main priorities are public safety, working effectively with taxi services and reflecting customer needs. In the Policy we aim to balance the needs of passengers and those of local taxi operators and drivers.

In the consultation survey we focus on aspects of the Policy that most affect passengers and the taxi trade. But there’s an opportunity to provide comments about any part of the Policy that’s important to you.

Please take a few minutes to complete the short online survey on Your Voice Bucks. Please review the draft Taxi Licensing Policy and summary document on the survey page.  If you would prefer to complete a printed version of the survey, please email us on taxilicensing.av@buckinghamshire.gov.uk or call us on 01494 421222.

Exploitation Safeguard Training

All licensed drivers are required to attend the Council's approved safeguard training. New drivers will not be granted a licence until they have successfully attended the training.

The council is unable to provide the usual mandatory Exploitation Safeguard training sessions at The Gateway.  Our training providers, CYP First, are running online training sessions for the time being. The next training available sessions will take place online via Zoom, on:

Thursday,       26th November 2020
Wednesday,   16th December 2020

Sessions are at 10am, 2pm or 6 pm

To book simply text 07535 440 796 with your name, driver’s number, date and time you wish to attend. Important, please include an email address so we can send you your training invitation.  Please note you only need to attend if you have not previously attended the training with CYP First at The Gateway.