Unlicensed taxis are a common problem across the country and with the Christmas party season in full swing it's important to know how to tell an unlicensed taxi from a licensed one, says the council.
Cllr Tony Thomas, the council’s lead member for Housing, Regulation and the Environment, said: "Unlicensed taxis may seem to offer a better deal but it's not worth risking your safety to save a few pounds. These vehicles are not insured as taxis and the drivers have not gone through the rigorous checking involved in the licensing process.
“Licensing officers will be carrying out checks to ensure no unlicensed taxis are operating in the area. Never get in a taxi without first checking that it's the one you have booked or that it's a legitimate Hackney Carriage or Private Hire Vehicle.”
When the party is over and you need to get home, remember these guidelines about council licensed taxis:
• Hackney Carriage Vehicles have a plate attached to the front and rear of the vehicle displaying the vehicle details and licence number.
• Hackney Carriages can ply for hire from designated taxi ranks and can pick up passengers who flag them down.
• Private Hire Vehicles have a blue sign attached to the rear doors of the vehicle showing the licence and a plate at the rear of the vehicle displaying the vehicle details and licence number.
• Private Hire Vehicles can only be booked in advance through an operator.
Never get in to a vehicle that does not display an appropriate plate at the rear. It is not insured and may not be licensed. Ensure that the driver is displaying a council approved driver's badge. For your own safety, always take a council licensed vehicle - the driver and vehicle have both been vetted.
Cllr Hugh Irving, chair of Denbighshire’s licensing committee, said: “Don't let a good night out be ruined by an unlicensed taxi. Always book in advance or make sure you have the number of several local taxi firms stored in your mobile phone before going out.
“Before getting in a taxi ensure the driver knows the destination and always sit in the back. Make sure that you're picked up and dropped off somewhere familiar and well lit, however if you feel uneasy with the driver ask him to stop at a busy, familiar place and get out.”