Appy Days Ahead for Taxi Passengers!

The New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) today announced the passage, by its Board of Commissioners, of a pilot program that would allow passengers to “e-hail” a New York City taxicab via downloadable smartphone applications (“apps”). Five votes were necessary to approve the program, and seven of the Board’s nine commissioners voted yes, while two abstained.

“This is an exciting day for taxi riders,” said TLC Commissioner/Chairman David Yassky. “It’s the TLC’s job to represent passengers, and when new technology comes along, we want to make sure it’s available to them. New York City is known for embracing innovation, and we’ve certainly done that today.”

Once the program goes into effect sometime after February 15, 2013, app providers and developers will have to demonstrate their compliance with the guidelines the TLC will put in place to protect passengers from overcharges and ensure that services are only provided by properly licensed drivers before being allowed in the marketplace. The program year-long program would be evaluated quarterly, and if successful as anticipated, it could then be extended or replaced by permanent rules.

Passengers will be able to “e-hail” nearby taxicabs their smartphones within a half-mile in the city’s central business district south of 59th Street from east side to west side, or within a mile-and-a-half elsewhere in the city.

The New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) was created in 1971, and is the agency responsible for the regulation and licensing of almost 200,000 yellow medallion taxicabs and for-hire vehicles, their drivers, and the businesses that operate and support their industries. It is recognized as the largest and most active taxi and ground transportation regulatory body in the United States.

To find out more about the TLC, or to review its rules, regulations and procedures, we encourage you to visit our official web site at www.nyc.gov/taxi or call 311 in New York City, or 212-NEW-YORK from outside of New York City.

Contact: Allan J. Fromberg – 212-676-1013 (allan.fromberg@tlc.nyc.gov)

Category: Blog, New York City

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