ILLEGALLY PARKED TAXIS ARE REALLY ‘NO FARE’

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Grampian Police will be carrying out operations in the Banchory area to target taxis parking illegally in the town.

Earlier this week, a Banchory resident came to The Piper to express that he was becoming “increasingly frustrated” at the illicit parking by taxi drivers on the town’s High Street.

The Piper then contacted Grampian Police who said they were “fully aware of the illegal parking” and said that enforcement action will be taking place.

The force has had a number of complaints on the matter and educating drivers on the subject has failed to work, bringing about their next course of action.

Banchory resident Barclay Black had been on the High Street last Thursday evening, February 14, and while walking from one end to the other noticed four taxis parking illegally in that short space of time.

The taxi rank - based on the High Street - has space for approximately four cars.

QUEUE

However, the back end of the rank becomes double yellow lines before reaching the bus stop bay. This appears to result in taxis often extending the queue when the rank is full instead of going elsewhere.

Mr Barclay said: “I am sure I am not the only one who has seen taxis parking on double yellow lines, in bus stops and - quite worryingly - in disabled spaces.

“Last Thursday I witnessed two taxis, one after the other, parking in a disabled space outside McColls shop, with another parked in the bus stop while the driver stood on the pavement chatting to someone.

“When will something be done about this?”

A local taxi driver said: “I have seen this kind of stuff happening - especially on Friday and Saturday nights as there’s generally a heap of cars on then.

“I usually sit further up the street and wait, but there’s two taxi companies and four single one-car jobs so it gets quite crowded.

“In terms of parking in the disabled space outside McColls, some of the independent drivers actually have blue disabled badges. Or, if a customer has a blue disabled badge, we can use it to stop in the space and let them go to the shop.”

When questioned about why the problem occurred, and whether he thought there was a need for another, or larger, taxi rank, the driver commented: “There’s only space for four cars at once in the rank.

“We’ve telephoned the police and the council on how crowded it is.

“However, when we phone the council they say it’s a police matter and, when we phone the police, they say it’s a council matter.

“The traffic wardens do move taxis on but they’re rarely here, perhaps one Saturday morning a month, so that doesn’t help much.”

The driver defended his company and said: “We know the rules and stick to them”