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Driver News (August 20, 2018)

Red Line Service Disruption: Be advised of the Metro Red Line service disruption from Saturday, July 21, 2018 through Labor Day Monday, September 3, 2018. The Rhode Island Avenue and Brookland stations will be closed for all 45 days. During the weekend of July 28-29, Fort Totten (Red Line) and Takoma will also be closed. In addition, there will be no Red Line service between Fort Totten and NoMa-Gallaudet U stations. Visit the WMATA website for more information on transit disruption and closures.

VetsRide Program Returning: After a brief hiatus, the Mayor’s Office on Veteran Affair (MOVA) is re-launching the transportation program for DC veterans, effective as of Monday, July 9th. VetsRide will be Account 300. Program participants will be eligible to use this program to go to medical treatment and/or appointments, educational opportunities and employment opportunities, but NOT commuting to and from work. While MOVA authorizes limited ride-sharing, provided that the pick-up and drop-off points are identical, ride-sharing is restricted to other veterans that are eligible for the program, family members of eligible veterans and authorized caregivers for eligible veterans. If you have any further questions, please contact the Yellow Cab office’s main line at (202) 546-7900.

Face ID: As requested the Driver Face ID image was removed from the back-seat credit card equipment.  Drivers must display their Face ID on the visor. Failure to do so could result in the issuance of a citation.

Domelight Status: Remember to flip the On-Call switch to the ON position if you are in the Hired mode or responding to a dispatch call. DFHV will be issuing tickets for every noted infraction. If you are on-break or ending your shift please remember to turn off the domelight

Driver On-line Training: Effective July 1, 2018, Face ID renewals and those who participate in the H-Tag Pilot Program are required to take the free online driver training courses provided by DFHV.  You must type in your Face ID followed by the letter ‘a’ into the username field.  For example, if your Face ID is “12345” you will type “12345a” into the username field.  Your password remains the same.  Your old username will no longer work.  Yellow Cab will provide computing facilities and support to any driver who needs to complete the course.

Vehicle Decals: Drivers are advised to immediately replace the old red and white DCTC decals on the sides of the cab with the new DFHV decal.  The new decals should be available at DFHV.

Passenger Rights: Make sure that the Passenger Rights in the vehicle is the latest version.  Thee will be enforcement action  taken if there is an old version posted.

Lead Time in Zones: In response to drivers request and the shift to closest cab dispatch, the lead time in all zones has been changed to 15-minutes.  Please wait for the passenger up to 5-minutes past the scheduled pickup time as dictated by Title 31 taxicab regulations.

Riide App: Yellow Cab is now integrated with Riide a national taxicab mob-minutesile app.  You will begin to see these trips on your screen.  The rides are paid for in the App and the Driver notes will remind you.  At the end of the trip hit Account and Submit to close.  A Payment Succeeded or Payment Failed message will be displayed.  If the message is Payment Failed the passenger must pay in the cab.

SMS Pay: The SMS Pay feature roll-out was suspended because of some reported issues.  We will resume the roll-out when the issues are resolved. See PDF Instructions

One Stop Cards Available Online: Moving forward, One-stop forms will be available for drivers via the Yellow Cab Company portal. Drivers will also be permitted to submit one-stop forms online. Here are the online procedures on how to access and submit the forms online.

Taxi Butler:  There are now 26 Taxi Butler locations throughout the city. Here is a list of locations with the installed Taxi Butler device.

  • Adams Inn – 1746 Lanier Place NW
  • Avenue Suites Georgetown – 2500 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
  • Del Mar de Fabio Trabocchi – 791 Wharf Street SW
  • Fairfield Inn – 2305 New York Avenue NE
  • Hampton Inn and Suites, Navy Yard – 1265 First Street SE
  • Hampton Inn Hotel – 501 New York Avenue NE
  • Hilton Garden Inn – 1225 First Street NE
  • Holiday Inn Suites -1917 Bladensburg Road NE
  • Homewood Suites – 465 New York Avenue NW
  • Homewood Suites by Hilton – 501 B New York Avenue NE
  • Pod DC Hotel – 627 H Street NW
  • Courtyard Marriott – 1325 2nd Street NW
  • Hive Hotel – 2224 F Street NW
  • Willard Intercontinental Hotel – 1401 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
  • Intercontinental Washington DC – 801 Wharf Street SW
  • Hampton Inn Washington DC White House – 1729 H Street NW
  • Greenbriar Condominiums – 4301 Massachusetts Avenue NW
  • Cathedral Avenue Apartments – 4200 Cathedral Avenue NW
  • Ted’s Bulletin – 505 8th Street SE
  • Kimpton George Hotel – 15 E Street NW
  • SEI Restaurant – 444 7th Street NW
  • The Kennedy-Warren – 3131 Connecticut Avenue NW
  • Homewood Suites – 1475 Massachusetts Avenue NW
  • Residence Inn – 333 E Street SE
  • Hyatt Place – 24 N Street NE
  • Ingleside at Rock Creek – 3050 Military Road NW

New Tax Will Increase Uber, Lyft Trips: As part of the 2019 fiscal budget, the DC City Council unanimously passed new legislation that will increase taxes on ride-hailing trips from 1% to 6%. This new legislation will go into effect on October 1st, 2018. These increased taxes on ride-hailing trips will help to support the $178 million of funding that DC has pledged to upgrading the Metro transit system.  Read the full WTOP article here.

TLPA NEWS

Uber Driver Convicted of Rape, Faces 20 Years: It took less than two hours of deliberation for a jury to find a Prince Georges county Uber driver guilty of second degree rape last week. The October 2016 attack occurred after an intoxicated and unconscious female passenger was driven to a College Park motel and raped by her driver. A disturbing surveillance video of the incident helped jurors find Greenbelt’s Westagne Piere guilty of the heinous crime. Read the Washington Post article here.  

Two Tennessee Women Sue Uber Over Sexual Assault: Following an indictment by Hamilton County circuit court in response to an Uber driver sexually assaulting two women back in the summer of 2017, the victims have decided to sue the ride-hailing company, reports say. The assailant, John Kyle Lane, allegedly exposed himself to both woman in July and August of last year. Both incidents have similar timelines of the assailant making inappropriate comments and then exposing himself at the end of the trip. Read The Chattanoogan article here.

Will Regulation of Rideshare Apps Leave Passenger’s Stranded: (VIDEO): PBS News Hour covered the raging battle between New York City Ubers vs. taxis. Among the many questions that will  coming in the months ahead following NYC’s decision to cap ride-sharing licenses, perhaps the most important is what will become of the customers that have become depending on their services? Watch the PBS News Hour video here.

Uber Driver Tells Woman “We’re Going To Die”: After leaving a book club meeting, three Sacramento women experienced a disturbing and terrifying encounter with their Uber driver. After passing their highway exit and driving very erratically, the driver repeatedly said “we’re all going to die now”. The women were able to escape and want their experience to become a learning situation for others. Read the WAFF 48 article here.

NYC First Major city To Limit Ride-Hailing: Following a monumental vote on Wednesday morning, New York City became the first major American city to cap the number of ride-hailing vehicles that are permitted to be on the streets. The ruling will approve a pay floor for for-hire vehicles and will halt new ride-hailing licenses for a year. Despite NYC being Uber’s largest market in the US, the legislation passed in an overwhelmingly lopsided vote, while Mayor Bill de Blasio estimates this bill will benefit over 100,000 workers & their families. Read the New York Times article here.

Australia To Follow NYC’s Example?: Australia plans to potentially follow suit and cap the number of ride-sharing vehicles in their country. Many European & Asian countries have already began the process of limiting ride-hailing licenses. However, NYC’s historic announcement has escalated talks for Australia to do the same. Read the ABC News article here.

NYC City Council To Establish Help Center For Mental Health: The reality of sinking significant investments into medallions that were rapidly becoming worthless, six New York taxicab drivers tragically took their own lives over the past 12 months. The city council is now taking preventative steps to help maintain the mental health of distressed New York City taxicab drivers.  Read the full Daily News article here.

Know Your Driver Before Taking A Trip: Amidst the recent rash of controversial events associated with Uber & Lyft lately, it is wise to take extra precaution when getting into a stranger’s vehicle. Stanley Roberts of KRON4 San Francisco takes a deeper look at how to get to know your driver before you ride.    Watch the KRON4 San Francisco video here.

Uber Driver Found Guilty in 2013 Death: Four-and-a-half years after Syed Abid Muzaffar struck and killed six-year-old Sophia Liu, the case finally went to trial where the accused was found guilty of vehicular manslaughter. Because there was no passenger in the car when Muzzafar killed Liu, he was not covered by Uber’s insurance and the company denied any legal responsibility in the case.  Read the San Francisco Weekly article here.

New York City Officials Decline Reported $100 Million Bail Out:  Uber, Lyft & Via are facing a battle that is gaining momentum up in New York City. A proposal to cap the number of ride-sharing vehicles is in the works and the fate of that bill lay in the hands of both NYC’s mayor & city council. In an attempt to squash the bill, Uber & Lyft have offered a $100,000,000 ‘hardship fund’ bailout for taxicab drivers.   Read The Verge article here.

Anti-Uber Strike Ends After New Regulations Pass: For two months, taxicab drivers in Spain have been on strike, refusing to work until their government passed regulations that would cap Uber drivers in the country. Like many countries, the taxicab industry has been crippled due to the government’s failure to regulate ride-sharing platforms. But now the drivers have returned to work after the Spanish government has agreed to certain terms. It is now on Uber to take legal action to block the regulations. Read the Tech Crunch article.

‘Stop Uber From Flooding New York’ Op-Ed: Last week, a bill was proposed in New York City to put a cap on ride-hailing services in NYC. An opinion piece penned by Adrienne Adams, who is a member of the New York City Council, touches on the plight of the New York City taxicab drivers and why passing this bill in crucial. Read the New York Times article here.

MTA Blames Uber for Decline in NYC Mass Transit: The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) is wondering if the rise in Uber & Lyft has contributed to the decrease in subway and bus ridership? It is no coincidence when considering that NYC’s population has risen by about 500,000 people since Uber’s emergence, yet public transit’s number are in steady decline. Read the Wall Street Journal here.

Michigan Woman Denied Uber Trip: Chelsea Perry, a Grand Rapids woman who typically takes an Uber to get to work, was denied service last Monday. The driver is believed to have refused her service because of the size of her chair. While Perry is not happy with her recent service with Uber, she is using this situation to raise awareness to the plight of other handicapped passengers. Read the Click on Detroit article here.

San Diego Cabbies Continue To Struggle at Airports: Like many places around the globe, the emergence of Uber & Lyft are pushing cabs to the brink of extinction. In the San Diego area, only about 850 cab drivers remain, its lowest figure in 30 years. Medallions, which could’ve fetched $100,000+ several years ago, and now nearly worthless. Among the areas that San Diegan cabbies are struggling most are at airports. Read the San Diego Union Tribune article here.

Lyft & Uber Increase Major Traffic: In many major cities, daily commuters are ditching public transportation in favor of ride-hailing apps. The problem is, this obviously increases the number of vehicles on the road, which has thrown a monkey wrench in commutes nationwide. Studies show that the increase in traffic has risen nearly 180%. Read the Curbed article here.

DC Metro Reaches Agreement With Union: WMATA has reached an an agreement with AFL-ICO union OPEIU Locat 2 that provides modest wage increases in exchange for greater employee contributions to health care. The contract, which will be five years in duration, comes after a heated two-year debate and will reduce healthcare costs by nearly $2.3 million. Read the Mass Transit Magazine article here.

Uber Struggling To Find CFO: Ride-hailing app Uber hasn’t had a chief financial operator since 2015. Last year, Uber also lost two high ranking executives. Current Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi admitted this week that filling those roles hasn’t been easy. Read the Business Insider article here. 

Pink Taxi Empowering Women Passengers & Drivers: A group has emerged that is trying to put an end to years of reported sexual assault against female passengers in the taxicab & ride-sharing industry. Pink Taxi, an Illinois-based taxicab company, is a blackchained-based platform is by women, for women. Pink Taxi is exclusively women drivers & passengers and now operates in 18 countries. Whats more, they donate 15% of all proceeds to breast cancer related causes. Read the Null TX article here.

Is Too Much Uber A Good Thing?: Since its emergence earlier this decade, Uber has established itself as a global leader in urban transportation. But with their ambitious plans to introduce new programs, such as Uber Eats, Lime and an aerial transportation method called Uber Elevate, many wonder if their too much Uber is a good thing. Read the Forbes article here.

Previously Deported Man Found Guilty of Killing Colts Player & Uber Driver: Manuel Orrego-Savala, who has twice been deported from this country and has been living here illegally, has been found guilty in the drunk driving accident that claimed the lives of Colts linebacker Edwin Jackson and his Uber driver Jeffrey Monroe in February.  Orrego-Savala’s blood alcohol content was .19 as the time of the arrest, more than twice the legal limit of .08. Read the NBC News article here. 

Fare Fight In Virginia: When Uber & Lyft arrived in Charlottesville in 2014, they were met with much resistance. After a legal battle that saw Virginia’s General Assembly free ride-hailing apps to operate, the Charlottesville taxicab industry were forced to deal with circumstances that give ride-hailing companies an unfair advantages. Staying afloat amid these changes in an uphill battle. Read the Charlottesville Tomorrow article here.

Difference Between Facebook & Uber Apology Campaigns: Social network & ride-sharing powerhouses Facebook and Uber are both off a tumultuous year. Both companies faced extensive PR hits due to a variety of scandals. Both set out to regain the public trust this summer. But neither campaign was able to effectively deliver their message. Read the Business Insider article here.

Uber Self Driving Car Operations Terminated: Uber’s mission to place self-driving vehicles on the road in the near future has come to an end. After a number of issues in the project, including killing a Tempe, Arizona woman earlier this year, Uber is terminating the project after laying off about 100 autonomous vehicle operators. Read the Quartz Media article here.

Easter Seals Taxicab Operator GuideThis pocket guide covers driver responsibilities for serving passengers under the ADA, disability etiquette, mobility aids, assisting customers with service animals, and passenger responsibilities.

Taxicab ADA Brochure Frequently Asked Questions on Taxi PDF version: This brochure outlines in question and answer format taxicab companies’ responsibilities under the ADA and is geared toward managers and owners.

Here are the latest editions of DFHV Newsletters (July 2018)