In the Borough of Reigate & Banstead we have certain specific bye-laws relating to taxis. These are explained further below. A bye-law is a specific regulation made by a local authority.
Taxi licence number
(a) The proprietor of a hackney carriage must ensure his/her licence number is legibly painted or marked on the outside and inside of the carriage, or on plates fixed to it.
(b) A proprietor or driver of a hackney carriage must:-
i) not wilfully or negligently cause or suffer this licence number to be concealed from public view while the carriage is standing or plying for hire;
ii) not cause or permit the carriage to stand or ply for hire with the painting, marking or plate so defaced that any number or detail is illegible.
Furnishings and fittings
The proprietor of a hackney carriage must:-
(a) make sure that the passenger can communicate with the driver;
(b) ensure the roof or covering is kept watertight;
(c) provide the passenger with at least one openable window on each side of the vehicle;
(d) ensure the seats are properly cushioned or covered;
(e) ensure the floor has a proper carpet, mat or other suitable covering;
(f) keep the fittings and furniture in a clean condition, well maintained and in every way fit for public service;
(g) provide means for securing luggage if the carriage is so constructed as to carry luggage;
(h) provide an efficient fire extinguisher kept in a place so it can be made readily available for use; and
(i) provide at least two doors for the use of passengers and a third means of entry/exit for the driver.
The owner of a hackney carriage must ensure the vehicle has a taximeter which is constructed, attached and maintained to comply with the following requirements:-
(a) the taximeter should be fitted with a key, flag or other device which starts the machine, bringing up the word AHIRED@ on the face of the taximeter;
(b) the key, flag or other device should be capable of being locked in such a position that the machinery of the taximeter is not in action and that no fare is recorded on the face of the taximeter;
(c) when the machinery of the taximeter is in action there should be recorded on the face of the taximeter in clearly legible figures a fare not exceeding the rate or fare which the proprietor or driver is entitled to demand and take for the hire of the carriage by distance and time in pursuance of the tariff fixed by the Council;
(d) the word AFARE@ should be printed on the face of the taximeter in plain letters so as clearly to apply to the fare recorded thereon;
(e) the taximeter must be situated so that passengers can see all letters and numbers on its face. The display must be capable of being illuminated during any period of hiring; and
(f) the taximeter and fittings must be fixed to the carriage with seals or other appliances so no-one can tamper with them except by breaking, damaging or permanently displacing the seals or other appliances.
The driver of a hackney carriage provided with a taximeter must:
(a) when standing or plying for hire, keep the key, flag or other device fitted in pursuance of the byelaw in that behalf locked in the position in which no fare is recorded on the face of the taximeter;
(b) before beginning a journey for which a fare is charged for distance and time, bring the machinery of the taximeter into action by moving the said key, flag or other device, so that the word "Hired" is legible on the face of the taximeter and keep the machinery of the taximeter in action until the termination of the hiring; and
(c) cause the dial of the taximeter to be kept properly illuminated throughout any part of a hiring which is between half an hour after sunset and half an hour before sunrise, and also at any other time at the request of the hirer.
A proprietor or driver of a hackney carriage shall not tamper with or permit any person to tamper with any taximeter with which the carriage is provided, with the fittings thereof, or with the seals affixed thereto.
Plying for hire
The driver of a hackney carriage shall, when plying for hire in any street and not actually hired:-
(a) proceed with reasonable speed to one of the stands appointed by the council;
(b) if a stand, at the time of his arrival, is occupied by the full number of carriages authorised to occupy it, proceed to another stand;
(c) on arriving at a stand not already occupied by the full number of carriages authorised to occupy it, station the carriage immediately behind the carriage or carriages on the stand and so as to face in the same direction; and
(d) from time to time when any other carriage immediately in front is driven off or moved forward cause his carriage to be moved forward so as to fill the place previously occupied by the carriage driven off or moved forward.
A proprietor or driver of a hackney carriage, when standing or plying for hire, shall not make use of the services of any other person for the purpose of importuning any person to hire such carriage.
The driver of a hackney carriage shall behave in a civil and orderly manner and shall take all reasonable precautions to ensure the safety of persons conveyed in or entering or alighting from the vehicle.
The proprietor or driver of a hackney carriage who has agreed or has been hired to be in attendance with the carriage at an appointed time and place shall, unless delayed or prevented by some sufficient cause, punctually attend with such carriage at such appointed time and place.
A proprietor or driver of a hackney carriage shall not convey or permit to be conveyed in such carriage any greater number of persons than the number of persons specified on the plate affixed to the outside of the carriage.
If a badge has been provided by the Council and delivered to the driver of a hackney carriage he shall, when standing or plying for hire, and when hired, wear that badge in such position and manner as to be plainly visible.
13. The driver of a hackney carriage so constructed as to carry luggage shall, when requested by any person hiring or seeking to hire the carriage:-
(a) convey a reasonable quantity of luggage;
(b) afford reasonable assistance in loading and unloading; and
(c) afford reasonable assistance in removing it to or from the entrance of any building, station or place at which he may take up or set down such person.
The proprietor or driver of a hackney carriage shall be entitled to demand and take for the hire of the carriage the rate or fare prescribed by the Council, the rate or fare being calculated by distance and time unless the hirer express at the commencement of the hiring his desire to engage by time.
Provided always that where a hackney carriage furnished with a taximeter shall be hired by distance and time the proprietor or driver thereof shall not be entitled to demand and take a fare greater than that recorded on the face of the taximeter, save for any extra charges authorised by the Council which it may not be possible to record on the face of the taximeter.
(a) The proprietor of a hackney carriage shall cause a statement of the fares fixed by Council Resolution to be exhibited inside the carriage, in clearly distinguishable letters and figures.
(b) The proprietor or driver of a hackney carriage bearing a statement of fares in accordance with this byelaw shall not wilfully or negligently cause or suffer the letters or figures in the statement to be concealed or rendered illegible at any time while the carriage is plying or being used for hire.
The proprietor or driver of a hackney carriage shall immediately after the termination of any hiring or as soon as practicable thereafter carefully search the carriage for any property which may have been accidentally left therein.
The proprietor or driver of a hackney carriage shall, if any property accidentally left therein by any person who may have been conveyed in the carriage be found by or handed to him:-
(a) carry it as soon as possible and in any event within 48 hours, if not sooner claimed by or on behalf of its owner, to the office of the Council and leave it in the custody of the officer in charge of the office on his giving a receipt for it; and
(b) be entitled to receive from any person to whom the property shall be re-delivered an amount equal to five pence in the pound of its estimated value (or the fare for the distance from the place of finding to the office of the Council, whichever be the greater) but not more than five pounds.
Every person who shall offend against any of these byelaws shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level further fine not exceeding two pounds for each day during which the offence continues after 2 on the standard scale and in the case of a continuing offence to a conviction therefor.
Repeal of byelaws
The byelaws relating to hackney carriages which were made by the Council on the Twelfth date of March 1979 and which were confirmed by the Secretary of State on the Fourth day of May 1979 are hereby repealed.