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17 cameras to monitor taxi drivers

The taxi watchdog is to install surveillance cameras at 17 city locations to crack down on drivers who break the rules by refusing to take passengers.

Local cabbies have been known to reject passengers taking short journeys or on congested routes because it would affect their income.

The watchdog is also fixing LED lamps to some 47,000 local taxis which will indicate whether the taxi is available, out of service, or on its way to a booking.

The lamps will be controlled by taxi management and the driver won't be able to change their status.

If there is a complaint, the management will be able to review the car's service state and quickly determine whether the driver is breaking the rules or not.

Shanghai Traffic Law Enforcement Team said there would also be increased undercover patrols at the 17 sites where a quarter of the city's daily 2 million taxi rides begin.

The latest crackdown was urged by the Shanghai government after a number of complaints from visitors to Auto Shanghai 2009 in Pudong New Area's Longyang Road.

A cabbie will be convicted of deliberately turning down passengers under any of the four situations:

The car stops, but the driver then declines the fare;

The car is at a taxi stand or taxi parking lot but the driver refuses to follow a management request to pick up waiting passengers;

The car is in normal service and parks off the street but the driver refuses to accept a fare;

A cabbie forces a passenger to get off in the middle of a journey without a justifiable reason.


The taxi watchdog can suspend a cabbie convicted of refusing passengers for 15 days and impose a 200 yuan (US$29.30) penalty; a driver will lose his taxi license if convicted of two such violations in 12 months.

The 17 sites under scrutiny

The two passenger railway stations, the two airports, People's Square, central Lujiazui area, Yuyuan Garden, the Bund, Xintiandi, Super Brand Mall, Wujiaochang area, Xujiahui area, Shanghai Exhibition Center, Shanghai New International Exhibition Center, Shanghai Stadium, Shanghai Indoor Stadium and Longyang Road Maglev Station.


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