Sophia Liu

The San Francisco Cab Drivers Association would like to express our deep condolences to the Liu family. We sincerely regret that it takes a tragic accident such as this to demonstrate the shortcomings of the recent decision by the California Public Utilities Commission’s (CPUC) allowing an unlimited number of insufficiently insured vehicles to provide un-licensed taxi service. All without the requirements or restrictions imposed on legitimate taxicabs.

Legal SF taxicabs must provide primary insurance coverage at all times, whereas the CPUC’s recent decision only requires “Transportation Network Companies” (TNCs) to carry $1 million coverage “while they are providing TNC services”, which is impractical and unclearly defined. Uber’s denial of liability in this incident “because the driver was not on an Uber order at the time“, directly demonstrates the fallacy of this policy. “On demand” passenger transportation service requires drivers to be on the road constantly, making themselves available for orders. These drivers are on the road for up to ten or more hours at a time.

Currently, there is no part-time personal insurance policy that will cover these vehicles between rides, so these companies rely on their drivers not disclosing their commercial passenger transportation activities to their personal insurance companies. If a part-time personal insurance policy were to be created, everyone’s personal insurance coverage would go up significantly in order to cover these added expenses. If it turns out all insurance coverage is denied for incidents such as this, taxpayers will end up footing the bill.

These services are unfairly competing with legal taxi drivers by cutting regulatory corners, ultimately at the public’s expense.

Categories: Illegal Taxis, Opinion - Editorial

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