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COVID NEWS...COVID NEWS


LEEDS DRIVERS TAKE PASSENGERS TO AND FROM ‘HOUSE PARTIES’ DESPITE BAN


Leeds taxi and private hire drivers say that they are now taking passengers to and from ‘house parties’ all night long, despite the current ban in the city on households mix- ing. It has been against the law to meet people from other households in a private home or garden in Leeds since September 25. One driver who did not want to be named, said: “There is no limit to the number of people needing lifts between houses at all hours of the night. He added: “They are all small quiet house parties now, whereas at the start of the pan- demic there was a lot more loud ones with DJs and more people. I think the police have stopped all that. “The parties are in every area of Leeds and


people need picking up at every hour of the night so there is no limit. “The good thing is that people are a lot less drunk and more respectful. For a taxi driver it is much better because you know who you are picking up. It is not people who are very drunk in town when sometimes they are fighting or being sick.” A driver from a different Leeds firm, said he also picks people up from ‘house parties’ throughout the night but the new rules have still left him looking for other ways to sup- plement his income. He said: “There are enough house parties to keep me going but it has definitely been tough, especially since the 10pm rule. “I have started doing deliveries for a friend’s shop, so I am seeing how that’s going.”


NOTTS DRIVER FINED FOR NOT SELF-ISOLATING


A taxi driver has been fined for failing to self-isolate after a trip abroad. LincolnshireLive reports that police received a report that since returning home from one of the countries on which the Government has imposed a 14-day quarantine regulation, the man had failed to self-isolate for the required period. Officers stopped the man in his taxi in the city centre at around 10.15pm on Thursday September 24 and issued him with a fixed penalty notice for £200. It is understood the man has not tested pos- itive with Covid but the rules mean he should still have been self-isolating. Nottingham City Council taxi licensing offi- cials have been made aware and will now review the driver’s licence.


RECOVERING BRADFORD TAXI ASSOCIATION BOSS URGES DRIVERS TO TAKE COVID-19 SERIOUSLY


A Bradford taxi association boss, who is now recovering at home after complications with Covid-19, has urged the industry to take the virus seriously. The Telegraph and Argus reports that Mohammed Mukhtar Khan, chairman of the Bradford Hackney Carriage Drivers Associa- tion, has also gone out of his way to praise NHS staff for the superb care they provided him while he was recovering for six days in Bradford Royal Infirmary. Mr Khan, 52, who tested positive for Covid- 19 earlier this month, said: "I got looked after 24 hours day. Without their help at the hospital, I don’t think I would have survived. "I had breathing problems, a fever and a lot of other complications. Thankfully, I pulled through with the medicine they gave me." Mr Khan has now been released from hospi- tal and is on the road to recovery self-isolating at his home in West Bowling. Mr Khan now wants to give back to the hos- pital staff who worked so hard to make him better. He said one of the best ways is


through fundraising and he is considering doing some kind of monthly collection from taxi drivers and anyone else who would like to donate. As chairman of the Bradford Hackney Car- riage Drivers Association, Mr Khan also wanted to send a strong message to taxi drivers and customers to take care so they do not catch Covid-19. "I don't want anyone to go through what I've gone through, so as taxi drivers we have


a duty to take care of ourselves and our passengers. If we’re not well, who’s going to provide the service? "This virus is not a temporary thing," said Mr Khan, who advised taxi drivers to keep sani- tising surfaces throughout their vehicles, including door handles. He also urged them to make sure their cus- tomers wear face masks inside the vehicles. And if they do not have one, he said drivers should provide one if possible. Mr Khan is also asking for a grant to install more secure and safe permanent screens between drivers and passengers. "The tem- porary screens are not as good for drivers as having a permanent one," he said. "Per- manent ones are made of Perspex glass, which is a very solid plastic. Once I get back on the road, I want to apply for a grant that would help pay for these screens." The Hackney carriage association drivers are primarily independent and work under Bradford Council which has supported them through the pandemic.


T HE CL E A N E R , S A F ER WAY TO TR A V E L


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NOVEMBER 2020 47


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