CPUC Public Comment

These were my public comments today on the proposed ruling in the Order Instituting Rulemaking at the CPUC regarding the Smartphone Hailable Illegal Taxi Services (SHITS)….

As a San Francisco real estate agent I drive around the city all day every day with many quick stops to photograph property or preview for a client.

Over the last year I have witnessed a growing number of vehicles making dangerous maneuvers, stopped in blind corners and generally driving in the manner of a taxicab. Having had many near misses with these largely unmarked vehicles I have noticed that they are almost always marked with a pink mustache, sidecar socks or passengers entering or exiting the rear. I have had on numerous occasions had random strangers try to enter my vehicle thinking I am their Lyft, sidecar or UberX… This is a situation just begging for abuse by unscrupulous characters.

This is simply not safe for the other users of the road to have thousands of untrained and questionably insured drivers plying the streets like taxis, adding to congestion, pollution and increasing the danger to all.

The CPUC lacks the enforcement capability to safely regulate these services that are clearly acting as taxis and regulation should be handed over to the cities where on-demand transportation regulation belongs. Benefitting 20year olds at the expense of the rest of the population and a long established blue collar industry is simply not safe for the public at large.
TNCS are simply a veiled classist and racist attack on hard working Americans that young underemployed entitled kids do not understand or respect and quite simply don’t want to patronize.

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2 thoughts on “CPUC Public Comment

  1. Ha, you are unable to clearly state how the new class would harm the public interest. Also how do new services only benefit “20year olds”? As a 40+ year old resident of San Francisco, I am glad there are alternative services to the traditional “taxi” service which under serve the city of San Francisco.

    1. John,
      The 20 year olds jab was intended for Peevey and I only had one-two minutes to speak. I was still editing my statement when they called me up.
      As a “real” taxi driver and dispatcher I am well aware of the dysfunction in the taxi industry. However, your assertion that taxis “under serve” San Francisco is patently false. The current dispatch arrangement is one of the major contributors to you not getting a cab as well as the fact that the calls to any given fleet surpass the ability to serve those calls. This is precisely why the taxi drivers have been clamoring for centralized dispatch for TEN YEARS. Had this been implemented years ago rogue services like Lyft and Sidecar would not exist. The lack of proper communication to drivers about where the demand is leads to empty cabs (50% or more of the whole city fleet) circling areas that are usually higher demand and not striking out to where they are actually needed. When I am dispatching at Luxor I can get the fleet picking up calls at an 85% efficiency rate because I am constantly communicating with both the drivers and passengers. MOST dispatchers in the city have no motivation to do this, and therein the problem lies. This does not take into account the “brother-in-law” cabbies that sit at the airport and cab lines rather than plying the city like a “real” cabbie, and are the worst cabbies in the city… these are the guys that refuse cards, refuse to convey and generally don’t know where they are going. This is only about 20% of the whole city fleet. With a service like Flywheel you can always get a cab in under 5 minutes and two clicks on your phone almost anywhere in the city, outer neighborhoods its more like 15, but you ALWAYS get a cab and better yet you can rate the driver and pay with your phone. No matter what if people actually called 311 to complain about cabbies rather than bitching in online comments the ass hat cabbies would be off the road, but apparently making a five minute phone call is too time consuming for most of the city these days.

      Catering to a small segment of the population because riding in cabs is beneath them reduces the quality of service for the rest of the populace that relies on multiple taxis every day, like the elderly and disabled. Do you think putting untrained drivers on the road to benefit the few at the expense of the many is worthwhile?

      Know the facts, call 311, don’t be a dick to cabbies, use Flywheel and I promise your opinion of the taxi industry will change for the positive.

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