Protest by taxi drivers ends
A three-hour work stoppage by taxi drivers in several locations across Ireland has come to an end.
Drivers had withdrawn services from some airports, train and bus stations and staged go-slow protests through a number of major cities and towns.
In Dublin, approximately 40 taxi drivers staged a go-slow from Parnell Square through O'Connell Street, D'Olier Street, College Green, Nassau Street, Kildare Street, Molesworth Street, Dawson Street, Suffolk Street, Dame Street, Westmoreland Street and back to O'Connell Street. This has now finished.
In Limerick, an earlier taxi protest and go-slow is dispersing on Patrick Street, with no major delays to report according to AA Roadwatch.
The drivers, members of the Irish Taxi Council (ITC), are demanding new legislation that would put a three-year moratorium on the issuing of taxi licences.
The ITC, which says it is made up of 27 separate associations, is also calling for additional taxi ranks in Dublin, Cork, Limerick, Galway as well as Waterford and wants insurance certificates to be checked in real time to expose fraudulent certificates.
The council is also calling for a new system to be put in place that legally obliges applicants to undergo tests equal to or exceeding the standard required to obtain an Irish driving licence.
Other demands include proficiency in the Irish and/or English language, a relinquishing of taxi plates via the office of the regulator and a ban on renting and leasing plates where the replacement of a car does not take place.
The ITC says it has more than 15,000 members across the State, all of which are full-time drivers.
Last week, taxi drivers in Cork, Waterford, Kerry, Limerick, Waterford, Sligo and Donegal also withdrew services in support of a sit-in by two members of the ITC at the office of the Commission of Taxi Regulation in Dublin.