TfL Ref: FOI- FOI-2629-1617
Thank you for your email received on 27 March asking for information private hire driver offences.
Your request has been considered in accordance with the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act and our Information Access Policy. I can confirm that we hold the information you require. You asked:
“Could you please provide me with the number of Uber drivers found to be taking fares while driving with no or incorrect insurance since July 2016.
Please separate this as follows:
Uber drivers that are touting (illegally picking up fares outside of the Uber platform but are otherwise Uber drivers)
Drivers that are working for the Uber platform at the time of a booking through the app but found to have no/incorrect insurance despite taking the fare.
If possible in the time limit, please also include the outcomes or current status of any instances - for example suspension, revocation etc.”
Between July 2016 and 27 June 2017, the number of private hire driver notifications received from the Metropolitan Police Service and/or the City of London Police for touting offences, where the report has mentioned Uber, is six. Of these six, three were identified as also driving without appropriate insurance.
Licensing action has been taken as a result of each disclosure and all six drivers have had their private hire licence revoked.
We do not routinely receive disclosures from the police where a driver has been identified as having no insurance as it is not a notifiable offence under the Home Office disclosure protocol. This information is usually provided when the offence is accompanied by other offences such as touting, plying for hire and other driving offences. The offences may also lead to driver disqualification.
Disclosures received from the police do not always provide details of which operator the driver was working for at the time an offence was committed. Additionally, legislation permits a licensed private hire driver to work for any licensed operator, and drivers may work for more than one operator at a time.
Our compliance officers patrol London’s streets targeting illegal activity and improving safety. We also work in partnership with the police to make sure drivers and vehicles have the correct insurance in place. We have secure direct access to the Motor Insurance Bureau’s (MIB) database which gives our compliance officers additional capability to determine whether insurance is in place.
As a result of our compliance checks, nine vehicles had their licence revoked for not having insurance in this period. None of the vehicles revoked were linked to Uber. The offence of not having insurance is a vehicle offence and not a driver offence. However, licensing action may be taken against the driver for not carrying the relevant documentation or for working in a vehicle without appropriate insurance.
If this is not the information you are looking for, or if you are unable to access it for any reason, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Please see the attached information sheet for details of your right to appeal as well as information on copyright and what to do if you would like to re-use any of the information we have disclosed.
Senior FOI Case Officer
FOI Case Management Team
Transport for London