Agreed changes to conditions - 17th February 2016

Following the meeting of the Regulatory and Appeals committee on 17 February 2016 the following four conditions were approved for Hackney Carriages and Private Hire vehicle licensing.

Please Note: Other than condition (1) all conditions are with immediate effect.

(1) Out of Area Vehicles

The condition is that the licensed operator of private hire vehicles shall maintain records of all bookings for hackney carriage vehicles licensed by another authority in such a manner, whether written or on computer, which enables them to be examined or audited. These records shall be available for inspection by authorised officers upon request. Details of how this information should be recorded can be found at page 36 Section 3, paragraph 3.12  and ‘Schedule of Vehicles and Drivers’ at paragraph 3.13 in your conditions book.

The receipt of advance bookings by the licensed operator for hackney carriage vehicles licensed by another authority must be maintained in a completely separate register of bookings. If a computerised booking system is in place those booking records must be kept in a completely separate and distinct area of the system’s hard drive to enable easy inspection by the Council. A separate telephone line and telephone number must be used and installed by the private hire operator and used for hackney carriage vehicles licensed by another authority which are undertaking private hire bookings within that operating base.

There must be a pre-recorded intercept message on the unique booking telephone line which clearly states to prospective customers the following:

"The driver and vehicle you are about to book are not licensed by Bradford Council and Bradford Council is not empowered to take licensing action against them in the event of a complaint. In the event of a complaint customers will have to deal with that other Authority where they may be licensed"

All operators are required to comply with this condition no later than 17 August 2016. Failure to do so will lead to a 21 day suspension notice being issued against your operators licence. Enforcement Officers will be conducting routine base checks where compliance issues regarding out of area vehicle and driver checks will be carried out. The Service will also work with operators who wish to get their out of area drivers and vehicles licensed at Bradford. If you require further information please make your enquires via the Service’s email address which can be found below.

Operator checklist

  • Arrange for installation of new separate telephone line
  • Maintain separate record of bookings for out of area vehicles working within your base (separate booking register/ separate partition of computer hard drive)
  • Arrange for pre-recorded intercept voice mail message on the unique booking telephone line
  • Update all advertising material/ cards/posters/decals, with new distinct number
  • Register out of area drivers with the Service for application of licence at Bradford  (if required)

(2) Equality Act 2010

The Licensing Service has added a specific sanction to the current table at section 4 of the Conditions Book in order to reinforce the importance of drivers, proprietors and owners complying with the Equality Act 2010, and to make it clear that failure to comply with the Equality Act 2010.

  • Eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment or victimisation
  • Advance equality of opportunity between those who share a protected characteristic and those who do not.
  • Foster good relations between those who share a protected characteristic and those who do not.

The proposal is that the Table of Non-Compliance Predicted Outcomes be amended to include the following:

"Failure to comply with the Equality Act 2010 by unlawfully discriminating against, harassing and/or victimising a person because of one or more of the protected characteristics listed in section 4 of the Act and set out in these conditions."

Protected characteristics

  • age
  • disability
  • gender reassignment
  • marriage and civil partnership
  • pregnancy and maternity
  • race
  • religion or belief
  • sex

(3) Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) Up Date Service

It is a requirement for licensed drivers to sign up to the Online DBS Update Service. Once this is in place and active the service will be able to check the current criminal status of a driver’s DBS certificate. This will ensure that the Licensing Service will have access to the most recent and accurate DBS details of all drivers.

The condition is that the Service checks on an annual basis the current DBS status of a driver.

(4) Guidance for the Carriage of Assistance/ Guide Dogs

Information regarding the safest seating position for assistance dogs being carried within a licensed vehicle has been brought to the attention of the Service. There is the potential for serious injury to the dog as a result of an accident, if the dog is travelling in the front seat when the airbag is deployed. The new condition would make it mandatory for the driver of the vehicle to advise the passenger travelling with an assistance dog that the safest option for the assistance dog is to travel in the rear of the vehicle.

The condition is that the driver of a licensed hackney carriage/ private hire vehicle shall advise a passenger travelling with assistance dog that:

"The safest option for the assistance dog is to travel in the rear of the vehicle"

Please remember refusing to carry an assistance dog without being in possession of an exempt certificate is an offence that will in all likelihood lead to a prosecution by Bradford Council.

For further information or clarification regarding the above conditions please contact Bradford Council Hackney Carriage Private Hire Service at taxi.testing@bradford.gov.uk