The San Pedro Town Council (SPTC) has revealed that theyÂre to implement new regulations that taxi drivers will have to abide by. Â The goal is to better regulate parking on some of San Pedro TownÂs busy streets whilst keeping pedestrians and road users safe.
The new pilot project will come into effect in 2014, with 35 new taxi permits being issued under new legislation. Â The SPTC want to regulate parking on Angel Coral Street, Barrier Reef Drive and Pescador Drive in an attempt to alleviate the heavy congestion that often occurs in the area. Â Whilst the new taxi permits will allow the holder to own and drive a taxi, if itÂs found that regulations and standards arenÂt being met, the SPTC can revoke the permit.
Talking of the latest regulations, San Pedro Town mayor, Daniel Guerrero, said: ÂThe SPTC will be lobbying with the taxi federation to improve taxi services for San Pedro.Â Â Under the new rules, all taxis must be painted yellow and include a taxi sign on top. Â It means that members of the public will be more easily able to define taxis amongst the rest of the traffic. Â Taxi unions will be identified by various color trims around the taxi cab. Â In addition to the new enforced color, there will also be size limits on taxis, with vehicles not able to exceed 68.3 inches in width or 166.5 inches in length. Â ÂBoth the SPTC and the taxi federation are against the increase of more taxis on the island, but as part of the Pilot Project, the SPTC also wants to downsize the vehicles. Â This would reduce traffic congestion and help address parking issues,Â Mayor Guerrero explained, adding that newer taxis to the island are more compact and are small enough to fit the latest ruling.
Further regulations to be introduced will also make it mandatory for taxi permit holders to be Belizean. Â Individuals must also be fluent in English so that they can transport both residents and visitors around the island with ease. Â Displaying an identity card at all times will also be necessary, whilst a police record check will also be carried out for those applying for a permit.
As the rules are brought into effect, itÂs hoped that not only will traffic be eased, but road safety will also be increased, not just for pedestrians, but for taxi passengers and other road users.