TWO taxi drivers in the Capital have had their licences suspended for illegally ranking outside the Balmoral Hotel on Princes Street.
Police have been carrying out enforcement action since 2016 to identify drivers waiting outside the hotel despite the absence of an official taxi rank and said two individuals have been charged on more than four occasions.
Now the city council has suspended the pair’s taxi licences for a month after police reported them to the licensing sub-committee.
The police said their activity around the Balmoral followed complaints from the hotel and members of the public.
Taxi drivers who were charged on more than two occasions were warned by the police cab inspector and advised any further charges would result in them being reported to the committee.
Inspector Scott Casey from the City Centre Policing Team said: “City Centre Community Officers have been conducting patrols outside the Balmoral Hotel in response to complaints about taxi’s ranking illegally.
“Illegal ranking causes significant traffic congestion in the area and is a frustration for other road users and members of the public.
“We will continue with our enforcement action and any other taxi drivers committing these offences will be dealt with in the same manner.”
Inspector Keith Mailer from the police cab office added: “It is essential taxi drivers comply with the conditions of their licence.
“Police Scotland has undertaken appropriate education and enforcement of this issue but unfortunately a small number of taxi drivers have continued to illegally rank despite ultimately being sanctioned by the court.
“This leaves us with no other alternative than to report them to the licensing sub-committee.”
Licensing sub-committee convener Councillor Cathy Fullerton said: “This decision sends a message to the small minority of taxi drivers who continue to break the conditions of their licence. Illegal ranking not only obstructs traffic but can put customers and other road users at risk.
“As a committee we take the issue of illegal ranking very seriously and will always take the appropriate action.”