The Green Party has given a guarded welcome to today’s announcement from Cabinet that Transport Minister Shane Ross TD will introduce regulations to ensure that rickshaw drivers and vehicles are vetted and registered.
It is understood that revisions to the Taxi Regulation Act 2013 will give powers to the National Transport Authority (NTA) to introduce a licensing regime for non-motorised rickshaws.
Cllr Ciarán Cuffe, Chair of Dublin City Council’s Transportation Committee: “I am pleased that Minister Ross is finally acting on this issue. My Committee first wrote to Minister Ross’s Department four years ago and we have been waiting for the Department to act ever since. At this stage it would be useful if Minister Ross gave us a timeline for when these proposed changes will actually occur.
“The National Transport Authority survey tells us that 57% of rickshaw passengers reported accidents or near-misses during their journeys. I have seen rickshaws breaking the law on many occasions, and action is long overdue. I also understand that 154 rickshaw drivers have been arrested while working under the Misuse of Drugs Act in the Pearse Street District in the past 18 months.
“It is important that this legislation also covers the multi-seater pedal-powered beer bikes that have appeared on the streets in and around Temple Bar in recent years. Some companies cater for stag and hen tours and these types of tours should be fully insured. It would seem ill-advised that the consumption of alcohol would be allowed while cycling these vehicles.
“Finally, the proposal to ban motorised rickshaws should be carefully considered. At a time when we are promoting smaller electric vehicles, it may be inappropriate to propose an outright ban.”
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