South Somerset taxi spot checks find one in four faulty

Spot checks of taxis in south Somerset have resulted in 10 cars being taken off the road until repairs are made.

South Somerset Council stopped 39 cars, with one in four turning out to have defects, including brake pads that were close to the legal limit.

Council licensing manager Nigel Marsden said spot checks kept "drivers on their toes".

Yeovil Radio Cabs manager Andrew Rossiter said he was surprised at the number of problems found.

Mr Rossiter's firm has 65 taxis, and he said if it was a reflection on his firm he would be concerned.

"If it was a reflection on my firm I'd be desperately worried, because of the ongoing maintenance we do, we MOT a vehicle every three or four months, and the vehicle comes in for a service regularly every 10,000 miles," he said.

"And when it has got a fault the driver lets us know and obviously we go and repair vehicles."

Mr Marsden said: "I think over the last six or seven years standards of taxis operating in south Somerset has increased and that's mainly because we've been doing these regular spot checks.

"With the recession drivers may be trying to cut a few corners in terms of their maintenance regimes, but the type of operation we did the other day, that we do frequently, keeps them on their toes."

Other councils in Somerset had lower percentage of problems in their latest spot checks.

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