July 21, 2017

Editorial: Uber drivers must obey traffic laws

UBER Logo on black background
Image Courtesy of UBER

Uber drivers use a specious argument by claiming increased ticketing of their vehicles for violating traffic laws in Amherst will lead to more drunken drivers on the roads.

Public safety is the motivation for Amherst Police in cracking down against Uber drivers who obstruct traffic, park in bicycle lanes or block the fire station entrance on North Pleasant Street. Police should not overlook violations by Uber drivers who are jockeying for a prime spot near the bars to wait for patrons who want to use the ride-sharing service.

On March 24, police issued seven tickets to Uber drivers for traffic offenses on North Pleasant Street. Police Chief Scott Livingstone said increased enforcement is needed to keep pedestrians, bicyclists and other motorists safe and to make sure that ambulances and fire engines are not impeded as they respond to emergencies from the central fire station.

“The Uber drivers have consistently blocked North Pleasant Street, while waiting for fares, conducted U-turns in traffic and speed from location to location,” says Livingstone. “It’s to the point where officers have had to issue more warnings and citations.”

Town Manager Paul Bockelman adds, “There is a market in Amherst for Uber. But they have to comply with traffic […]

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