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City of Orlando tickets Uber vehicles as “gypsy cabs”

June 25, 2014

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Today, reports that the city of Orlando ticketed drivers of multiple UberX vehicles, which began operating in the city earlier this month, for violating vehicle-for hire laws. Drivers, who use their own cars to take passengers around town, were fined $450 and had their cars towed.

Why? According to the Bungalower’s conversation with the city, they are treating Uber vehicles like “gypsy cabs.” The city is meeting with Uber and other taxicab companies to discuss … and by “other” companies, we’re sure they mean Mears, which runs the majority of the cab service in town. Mears blasted Uber when it first came to Orlando, accusing it of putting passengers at risk and of violating city ordinances.

Orlando is not the first city to crack down on Uber. The service came under fire in New Orleans and London recently, and it’s facing lawsuits and legal challenges, alleging everything from wrongful death to withholding tips, in multiple states. Uber says it’s just trying to bring competition to the dated transportation industry, which it says is long due for a makeover.

Maybe it’s just us, but this effort to push Uber around sounds just a little of the Great Food Truck Regulation Caper of 2013. If the city can’t control it (and find a way to make money off it, more than likely), Orlando citizen, you can’t have it.

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  • Mike

    It’s stupid backward-thinking like this that keeps Florida from keeping up with the rest of the world. I get the complaints about it lowering wages, but the transportation industry is going to have to find a way to keep up with the tech world just like every other industry (Cable companies vs Netflix anyone?). You can try to fight progress and get left behind, or you can find a way to work with it – it’s going to keep going either way. Orlando’s whole transportation system is garbage compared to other cities.