National Transport Authority Report A Decline In Taxi Numbers In Tipperary

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Taxi numbers in Tipperary have declined by almost over 4%, according to new figures from the National Transport Authority(NTA).  The data shows that there were 302 taxis operating in the county last year down from 316 in 2019 but up from 293 in 2022.

The South-East Region has been heavily impacted by taxi shortages in recent years, falling by over 11%, which has led to criticism of current small public service vehicles (SPSV) policy by various stakeholders, particularly in hospitality and tourism.   Nationally there are 26,360 taxis operating in Ireland in 2023 down from 27, 326 in 2019.

“The significant decrease in taxi availability is a crippling blow to rural Ireland’s hospitality sector,” according to Adrian Cummins, CEO of the Restaurants Association of Ireland adding that these businesses often rely on taxis to get customers home safely, especially after dark.

The decline in taxi numbers is attributed to a number of factors, including the fallout from the Covid-19 pandemic, an onerous entry system, and costly barriers for new drivers – such as outlays of up to €59,000 for a vehicle alone.

The Taxis for Ireland Coalition is calling on the NTA and the Government to take immediate action to address the shortage of taxis. They propose a 30% increase in taxi vehicles by 2027.

The Taxis for Ireland Coalition is calling for the removal of the Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle requirement for newly registered SPSVs and a re-assessment of the SPSV Driver Entry Test’s geography-based knowledge requirements. The removal of the WAV requirement but the continuation of the WAV grant would mean a larger pool of taxis to choose from, meaning that people that do not need a WAV will not be booking one unnecessarily according to the Coalition group.