While New York City is still awaiting authority to dole out tickets to drivers caught blocking bus lanes, the Taxi & Limousine Commission in conjunction with the MTA has mailed out the first round of summonses for those cabbies who are caught in the bus lanes. According to Heather Haddon of amNew York, the commission mailed out 30 tickets last week with another 120 more to come.
Fines are $150, and cabbies are, of course, not happy with it. “I wish there were other ways for the city to find money other than consistently targeting drivers who work for a living,” David Pollock, the man behind Taxi Insider, said. But Pollock has it wrong. It’s so much about finding money by harassing cab drivers as it is ensuring that buses have the right of way they deserve. To avoid the $150 ticket, cab drivers must simply stay out of the bus lanes, and the buses will be able to operate at optimal speeds. Anything else is just plain selfish.
In many cities taxis are allowed to you use the bus lanes, for example Santiago, Chile and Amsterdam, Netherlands.
There’s a difference between “using the bus lane”, and treating it like a taxi stand. In other words, let them drive down it if they have a fare, but don’t let them stop and block the lane.
I think the problem is that in those cities there are not as many cabs. In some parts of the city I’ve seen more than half of the traffic painted yellow. If cabs were allowed to use the lanes here it would just be back to the way it was. Maybe in the non peak hours or at night the taxis could use them?
I think in NYC, there are too many cabs and they stop to pick up/drop off all the time. If they were just using the lane for travel it might be manageable, but it’s really disrespectful to slow down a hundred people so someone in a cab can get out. Besides, the law is the law. Don’t go into the lane and you won’t get a ticket. Pretty easy.
When I cross the street in Manhattan, it’s the cabs I fear most. Just stay away from the bus lanes – your future passengers will thank you.
I love that private cars are the enemy yet gas guzzling v8 cabs are ok. The city should foster more off street parking with a small mta tax