SF Taxi Drivers Threaten to Strike

A group of San Francisco taxi drivers are planning to go on strike Tuesday.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    If getting a taxi in San Francisco is difficult now, imagining trying to flag down a cab in the Marina or North Beach -- when there are no cabs at all.

    Sounds terrifying, but it's the reality some San Francisco cab drivers are promising, unless the city's transportation leaders agree to a cab-friendlier set of rules.

    Drivers want the Municipal Transportation Agency to drop the five-percent surcharge imposed on all credit card transactions -- money that goes to the agency, not to drivers, meaning it's fare money lost -- as well as abandon once and forever the notion of a "waybill system," in which drivers' locations and the amount of their fares would be tracked by computer, according to the San Francisco Examiner.

    The strike right now is scheduled for next Tuesday at City Hall. Tuesday's the day of the next MTA meeting -- and it's also a day when six conventions are in town and when the Giants are playing.

    “The idea is to make taxi gridlock,” said Tariq Mehmood, the taxi driver organizing the protest. “This is the only way to create awareness about the problems facing our industry.”

    Fares in San Francisco are some of the highest in the nation. The MTA recently approved fares of $3.50 to start and 50 cents per mile, plus 10 cents per time spent stuck in traffic.