MORE than 40 taxis were impounded by Kouga Municipality over the past two months as part of the institution’s drive to make public transport safer.
Executive Mayor Horatio Hendricks said a total of 42 taxis were impounded by the Kouga Traffic Department this past December and January for operating without a public transport permit.
“The municipality has been holding weekly roadblocks with the South African Police Service to clamp down on illegal public transport operators and will continue with this joint programme to help make our roads safe for all,” he said.
He encouraged commuters to familiarise themselves with the documents required by public transport operators and to avoid making use of taxis that do not comply.
“There are four discs that should be displayed on a taxi’s windscreen – the red public transport permit, the operator’s disc, passenger liability disc and standard licence disc.
“If these discs are not visible and valid, there is a good chance that you are making use of an illegal taxi,” he cautioned.
Hendricks said the municipality established the depot for the impoundment of vehicles at Humansdorp some 18 months ago.
“The depot has made it easier for our Traffic Department to execute their duties and keep commuters safe. The facility is not used for taxis only, but also for vehicles that have been confiscated in drunken driving and other cases.”
He said while some of the taxis impounded in December and January were second-time offenders, the majority were first-timers.
“The law is clear and we would like to appeal to public transport operators not to put vehicles and drivers on the road that do not meet the legal requirements.”
The fees applicable for the release of impounded vehicles are R2 500 for a first offence, R4000 for a second offence and R8 000 for a third-time offence.