Hereford & Worcester

Herefordshire taxis to fit CCTV within three years

Taxi drivers in Herefordshire could be required to fit CCTV to improve safety for passengers and drivers.

Herefordshire Council said it was looking at phasing in the requirement over the next three years.

John Jones, chairman of Hereford's High Town Taxi Group, said he was in favour of the proposal, and vehicles already had cameras in the cabs.

"What we have to get over is the public's perception of CCTV - it's not there to spy on them," he said.

Herefordshire Council said it has begun talking to the county's 650 drivers and 40 operators regarding the proposals.

'Teething problems'

Councillor Adrian Blackshaw said: "We can achieve much more by working in partnership with the drivers."

Mr Jones said a voluntary system operating in Hereford had run in to technical issues with cameras not working properly.

He said he would work with the council to overcome any "teething problems" as CCTV was "worth its weight in gold".

The council said it was also considering the introduction of taxi marshals to control taxi ranks in Commercial Road in Hereford city centre on Friday and Saturday nights.

Taxi license fees are likely to rise, according to the council, as "current budget pressures" meant it will have to stop subsidising the sector.

The Conservative-controlled council has made in excess of £20m of savings over the past two years.

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