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PostPosted: Sun Jun 09, 2019 2:19 pm 

Joined: Wed May 16, 2012 6:33 am
Posts: 6083
Of course, the thread title is my take on things. The article in the Times looks at it all a bit differently.

Where to start with all this :roll: ](*,)

'Empty' Uber cabs driving pollution and congestion ... -c7ftgpkv0

Uber cab drivers carry a paying passenger for less than half their shift, according to new data that raises serious concerns that the ride-hailing giant is adding to congestion and pollution.

Drivers in London, Nottingham and Glasgow spent more than a third (35%) of their time cruising for work and almost a quarter (23%) of their time driving to pick up a passenger. A passenger was on board for 42% of the time.

Uber was launched in Britain with a promise that its smart technology, which matches passengers with the nearest vehicle for hire, would reduce traffic.

In 2014 Travis Kalanick, then its chief executive, told the Institute of Directors: “In our current model here in London there are 7½ cars taken off the road for every fully utilised Uber that is on the road.”

But James Farrar, a former Uber driver who obtained the figures after a two-year legal battle, said they provided hard evidence that the company’s approach added to congestion.

“They are competing on immediacy and availability and they do not carry any of the costs [of buying the cars]. That is going to lead to oversupply. You will cause congestion and these drivers will not have enough work.”

The figures, which tracked three drivers for a combined 7,500 hours, confirm that when they are looking for their next job they do not park, but typically spend 94% of their time cruising the streets, to maximise their chances of being offered another passenger.

David Dunn, 58, one of the three drivers, said he quit driving for Uber in Glasgow because he was having to work 80-hour weeks to recoup the £37,000 that he had spent on a car. He had to wear a smart shirt and tie to maintain his rating, yet would be forced to accept fares of as little as £3, or £2.25 after Uber had taken its cut.

In April, Glasgow became the first city in Britain to restrict the number of private hire vehicles. But councils in England have no such power.

A spokesman for the London mayor, Sadiq Khan, said: “The laws in this area aren’t strong enough. We need the powers to go further, including being able to cap the number of private hire vehicles in the capital.”

Uber said: “We share many of the same goals as the cities that we serve and are committed to addressing the same challenges: reducing individual car ownership, expanding transportation access and tackling air pollution.”


There's a graphic with bar charts illustrating it all. Or at least I think it does, but haven't really bothered to have much of a think about it. And I'm not sure if this graphic will work with everyone, and it can't be shown on here, but here's the link anyway:

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