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Complaints pile up over SF taxicabs

San Francisco’s taxi drivers should spend the new year working to woo more passengers, according to a recent review of passenger complaints from The Bay Citizen.

The review took into account passenger complaints registered with the city’s 311 complaint line from July 1, 2011, to June 30, 2012.

Passengers complaints ranged from claiming taxis were infested with bed bugs, drivers using cellphones while driving, rude drivers, and refusal to accept credit cards. One lewd complaint came from two friends who claimed a driver offered them a discount on the fare if they made out in front of him.

The last fiscal year resulted in a total of 1,733 complaints about The City’s cab drivers, a 13 percent increase from the previous year and nearly double the 900-complaint goal of San Francisco’s Municipal Transportation Agency.

It’s no wonder rideshare services like Uber and Lyft have become so popular in The City.

The agency has only one person to investigate the complaints filed and, as so, several cab company owners said they were unaware of the complaints filed against them.

Paul Rose, spokesman for the Municipal Transportation Agency, told The Bay Citizen:

“We investigate every serious allegation and get both sides of the situation and take appropriate action. It’s something that we take very seriously.”

Rose added that of the five to seven complaints investigated every day, half require disciplinary action.

Several advocates have pushed for The City to create a bill of rights so passengers know what they are entitled to. The agency is allegedly working on writing a document up that drivers would be required to post in their cabs for passengers, but does not have a timeline for when it would be completed.

Until then, perhaps taking your bike would be a safer option.

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