Cabbies in San Francisco are mad, and to show just how mad, they are planning a two-hour hissy fit on the afternoon of Tuesday, June 21. OK, maybe that’s not a fair description. You be the judge.
The cabbies are angry that the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency is considering putting more taxis on the street, charging drivers 5 percent of fares paid by credit card, and implementing an electronic tracking system. The MTA’s Board of Directors is meeting at City Hall at 1:00 on Tuesday, and they better be ready for an earful. According to one of the organizers of the hissy fit, I mean the strike, about 1,000 of the 1,500 cab drivers on the road between noon and 2:00 pm will either pull over and park for a nice afternoon break, or circle City Hall blasting their horns.
The MTA is also raising taxi fares in August to the highest in the entire country. Yep, the entire country. Let’s see, maybe it’s the taxi riders who should be raising a ruckus at the Board of Directors meeting next week. As an SFGate editorial said when the fare increase was approved in May:
Higher fares, scarce taxis, helter-skelter service: there’s a lot wrong with cab service in San Francisco. Unfortunately, the city’s transit czars aren’t getting the message by voting this week to give riders the highest rates in the country and nothing more.
Come August, the tab will go up at the start of trip as well as during. For a 5-mile, crosstown trip, it’ll take $17.35 instead of $16.15. And that’s if you can find a cab.
For a city that is making car ownership more and more cumbersome, getting a cab shouldn’t be the ordeal that it is now. I wonder if next Tuesday’s driver strike will gain the drivers sympathy for their position, or if it’ll serve no purpose other than annoying people who are either (a) in need of a ride or (b) not fans of incessant horn-honking at City Hall. We shall see.