Last year, yet another terror alert was sparked after a car drove into pedestrians on London’s Exhibition Road. It is thought the driver had executed an illegal left turn from the Cromwell Road and become disorientated at the “shared space” layout of Exhibition Road. He was driving a Toyota Prius, which meant the immediate suspicion was that he was driving for driver and rider matching service Uber. And he was indeed driving for them.
Moreover, he had three punters in the back of the Prius. The terror alert went off when he tried to leave the scene after the collision, and had to be restrained. At the time, I asked “Why [leg it]? If it was his vehicle, and he was a registered Uber ‘partner’, with his licence and insurance up to date, then why do something that would only ensure the Met would throw the book at him just that little bit harder?” Now we know why.
As the Mail has reported, “An Uber driver who sparked a major terror alert when he ploughed into a crowd of tourists had been driving around London uninsured and without a licence for two years … Tanzanian Juma Omar, 48, floored the throttle of his Toyota Prius outside the Natural History Museum and careered over the pavement, sending pedestrians flying into the air as others ran screaming from his path”. No insurance for two years.
Then comes the part that Uber cheerleaders will find hard to excuse. “He claimed the brakes had failed, but he was convicted of dangerous driving by a jury at the Old Bailey … The court heard Omar came to Britain as an asylum seeker in 1995, but was told to get out [of] the country in 1998 … Omar applied for a replacement passport in another man's name and used that identity to pass his driving test”. And it gets worse.
“He got a job with Uber using the fake documents and did not have insurance when hit the pedestrians in on October 7 last year … Up to 11 people suffered non-life threatening injuries and Omar was wrestled to the floor and detained by members of the public”. Omar has been jailed for 15 months. He may well be deported after that. But in the meantime, there are more of those difficult questions for Uber to answer.
Over two years before the Exhibition Road crash, we read “The Guardian demonstrated that a driver was able to pick up a paying customer having provided fake insurance paperwork via i[Uber’s] computerised system. Some drivers fear that breaches in the technology could put customers’ safety at risk”. Well, Omar breached it. And it certainly put others’ safety at risk. Also, the Met has warned about this, as I’ve told previously.
Uber vehicles have been used for illegal activity. Their drivers feature disproportionately in accident statistics. There have been a series of sex attacks by their drivers, some of which the company has failed to report to Police. And as the LCDC has discovered, Uber threw 199 drivers off its London roster in less than a month this Summer. 199 of them during the first three week period of the company’s new licence.
All of which begs the question as to why Uber managed to get that new licence in the first place. The established cab and private hire trades deserve to have that answered. And ultimately, so do all Londoners. Where is the control being exercised here?
The bad news keeps coming up Uber. It can no longer be dismissed as a coincidence.
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This is the first really coherent piece of writing on the simply dangerous situation that the public now find themselves.Will this shambles continue and who is responsible?
Import the third world and you get the third world, that's not Uber's fault. Should they discriminate against those doing what they would be doing in their place of origin?
Isla Hermosa 13:14.
Here's a clue: Ultimate legislative responsibility lies with the government.
The present government consists of a collection of free-loading far right spivs known as the tories.
Make of that what you will.
Anon 14:13 - Give opportunists an opportunity to circumvent rules and regulations and you get Uber and its drivers.
How on earth is it not Uber's fault? Only a complete and utterly brain dead dickhead could think otherwise! Do you work for the Evening Standard?
Surely it would be in Uber's best interests to make sure that they were using drivers with the right licence, insurance, and even that their drivers are who they say they are? These drivers should be regulated by their employer, and presumably the regulating authority would trust the employer to be focused on looking after itself and therefore follow the same rules that others abide by. Unfortunately this is Uber we are talking about, which means that they don't care about anything - not even their own reputation - in the pursuit of local denomination to their bank account.
In that case, you wouldn't blame the company if you were a passenger who became paralysed following an accident where the driver was white, British born and without insurance cover.
Nah, Uber is safe, my wife and friends use it. There will always be someone who can bypass checks if determined and immoral enough. No, Khan should be focusing on unlicensed and bogus mini-cab drivers who apparently sexually assault on average a dozen women a month. But of course this doesn't suit those socialist trade union loving "liberals" determined to defend the overpriced and uncompetitive black cabs who have been a disservice to London for far too long. Competition, enterprise and initiative are anathema to "liberal zolots" !
"Overpriced black cabs"?
Who do you blame, then, for insanely priced housing in that shit hole of a city?......Adam Smith?
Anon 18:52 – maybe your wife and friends do use Uber, but that doesn’t make it right.
Think about the rules and regulations that govern cafes and restaurants – yet there is still the odd chancer who uses the same chopping board for meat and poultry, skips cleaning the fridge and ignores the vermin creeping around behind the cupboards and over the work surfaces. Yet these people are usually small time, incidental miscreants – not a huge, repeat offending multinational taxi company who is determined and immoral enough to ignore the most basic of staff checks. If, for example, McDonalds had food hygiene concerns on a par with Ubers problems then they would have been closed down years ago (but since most of their restaurants are franchises then the franchise owner loses the franchise and McDonalds cuts them adrift for failing to meet requirements).
But I guess if you are unconcerned about who is driving your wife about, and whether they are safe enough to do so, then how do you fancy going for a meal at a cafe which is in an area where there are coincidentally quite a few missing cats?
Who made it a sh*t hole? - import the third world . .. ... ....
So "the third world" caused London house prices to reach insane levels, reduced its skyline to a neon-lit high rise slum of the imagination, made its air the most polluted in Europe, and corrupted media and politics?
Some achievement, that. Especially when poverty stricken and hounded by inhuman racist morons like you.
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