Transport for London (FfL) has announced today (Friday 22nd September 2017) that it will not be issuing a new private hire licence to Uber. Officials at TfL have concluded that the ride-hailing app business was not a ‘fit and proper company to hold a London private hire operator licence.
The organisation said that its decision was made on the grounds of “public safety and for security implications. Uber has confirmed that it will appeal against TfL’s decision and released a statement commenting that “Far from being open, London was closed to innovative companies.”
Around 3.5 million passengers and 40,000 drivers use the Uber app in the capital. TfL’s concerns about reissuing Uber with a licence involve the reporting of serious criminal offences and the results of background checks carried out by Tfl officials.
Uber said in a statement that: “Transport for London and the mayor have caved in to a small number of people who want to restrict consumer choice.”
Tom Elvidge, Uber’s General Manager for London said: “To defend the livelihoods of all those drivers, and the consumer choice of millions of Londoners who use our app, we intend to immediately challenge this in the courts.”
He continued: “Uber operated in more than 600 cities around the world, including more than 40 towns and cities in the UK.”
Speculation had been growing about the continued future of Uber in London. Those speaking out against the firm have claimed that it doesn’t do enough to regulate its drivers and that it is the cause of gridlock on the streets of the capital.
However, one Uber driver in London commented that he didn’t think that the decision had been made fairly saying that it offered a flexible schedule and a weekly income for many.”