Rushing ruins livelihoods: Road safety in the taxi industry

Stewart, Daniel H., Biggs, Herbert C., & Davey, Jeremy D. (2005) Rushing ruins livelihoods: Road safety in the taxi industry. In Conference of the Australian Institutes of Transport Research, 8 to 10 December, 2005, QUT, Brisbane.

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Taxis suffer a high rate of crashes, as is borne out by claims on third party insurance. Consequences of crashes are compounded for a taxi, as it means at least one driver and investors lose income, passengers may be injured, and the reputation of taxis as a safe conveyance diminished. The taxi industry has a complex structure; the main entities are the taxi company, taxi depot, taxi owner, taxi driver, and taxi license owner. For any taxi the five entities may be the same, different, or any one of the combinations in between and this complexity may be detrimental to enhancing safety. The current study explores the causes of taxi crashes and trials suitable interventions to reduce crash rates. Other than a tendency to blame other taxi drivers, or other drivers, the most often cited safety issue was paying attention, "be psychic, see four cars ahead". The Queensland Taxi Driver Questionnaire has been trialled and several initial observations made. Taxi drivers who purposely sped on residential streets were more likely to crash and to have incurred demerit points. While these results provide evidence that speed cameras are valid, other results point to "being in a rush" as the critical factor: Taxi drivers who try to get their passenger to a destination on time, regardless of the road rules, are more likely to crash, by contrast, taxi drivers who give safety of passengers a priority were less likely to crash. On the evidence of this initial pilot study, the questionnaire has been revised and is currently in distribution to a larger population of drivers. Industry factors are incorporated in the questionnaire informed by the theory of planned behaviour. Early in 2006 a magnetic pen operated computer used to assess drivers will be trialled with both novice and experienced taxi drivers.

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ID Code: 2898
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: No
Keywords: taxi, crash, theory of planned behaviour, accident, road safety, computerized assessment
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > COMMERCE MANAGEMENT TOURISM AND SERVICES (150000) > TRANSPORTATION AND FREIGHT SERVICES (150700) > Road Transportation and Freight Services (150703)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000) > PSYCHOLOGY (170100) > Social and Community Psychology (170113)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety - Qld (CARRS-Q)
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2005 (please consult author)
Deposited On: 14 Dec 2005 00:00
Last Modified: 09 Jun 2010 12:29

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