For years taxi drivers have been stung by high rates to insure their cabs, with various factors including age, address and vehicle size playing their part in the price calculated. For this reason taxi drivers try to paint themselves in the best light possible when shopping for cab cover, not wanting to set off alarm bells in the ear of the insurer. Some local cabbies are going as far as intentionally getting their licences from other local authorities rather than from the actual area they are from, enjoying cheaper rates as a result. Permitting drivers from quieter areas to operate in more flourishing cities these loopholes are detrimental to the smooth-running of the taxi-driving industry, having a direct affect on the industry’s economical success. Rossendale and Bradford – The key areas Where these types of issues can be seen in other areas of the UK the biggest offenders will be found operating in Bradford, licensing their taxi in Rossendale. Counsellor Westerman said he had spoken to Rossendale’s hackney carriages department, being told that there were only two enforcement officers dedicated to Bradford postcodes. “They’ve got 1,700 licensed taxis in Rossendale, and there’s no way so many taxis can be operating just within Rossendale, but as long as Rossendale Council is getting the money from these licenses, it’s happy," he said. “The cost of a taxi licence there is £275, cheaper than Bradford, and Rossendale says it has now reduced this cost even further. "I’ve asked for an enforcement day or night to be done in Keighley, but the council told me it has only got two enforcement officers so it wouldn’t be able to do anything until it got more staff. “The council also told me it hopes to introduce a knowledge and language test, but I was shocked to learn it doesn’t already have this.” Why is this such an issue? Not only do such loopholes promote an imbalanced industry but they are also an issue for the insurance industry, having to alter the way in which they work to accommodate such individuals. Imran Ahmed, Director of High Gear says: ‘Where the driver’s address and their license authority usually match up quite well in the case of drivers abusing these loopholes we have to change our approach, relaying details of such ambiguities to providers. This costs us a lot of time as a company and we believe authorities should take action against this’. Claiming to be ‘extremely frustrated’ at the lack of support the High Gear Directors are planning to take matters into their own hands, going head-to-head with the taxi licensing governing bodies. Let us know what you think, should taxi drivers be able to continue making use of these blurred lines?