A taxi driver has criticised motorists who park up in a taxi rank in Burton.
Kamran Hussein, who works at Burton-based iCars taxi firm, has said a section of High Street near the junction with Meadowside Drive is is a taxi rank, and is marked on the road as a taxi rank.
However, he has been left frustrated at being unable to park up because vehicles which are not taxis park there.
He claims some of the cars are left there all day by motorists who work in town to avoid having to pay in nearby car parks.
Mr Hussein also says he has never seen any of the offending vehicles receive a ticket from traffic wardens for wrongly parking the rank.
He said: "It is an official taxi rank that gets used in the day and night but because of these people parking there for free all day taxi drivers are having to park on the double yellow lines or elsewhere.
"I have never seen them getting a ticket even once or twice.
"I asked the ticket officers and they do not seem to be bothered.
"I think the council should be interested in keeping the taxi ranks clear but they do not seem to be bothered which is affecting taxi drivers.
"These cars are parking there for a free of charge all day.
"It really is a shame."
Only public hire taxis are permitted to park in taxi ranks. Private hire taxis are not permitted to park on a taxi rank and if they do are subject to enforcement like any other vehicle.
It is against contravention code 45 for any vehicle (other than a taxi) to be parked in a taxi rank.
If they do so they will be issued a penalty charge notice.
Staffordshire County Council has been approached for comment.
East Staffordshire Borough Council is also looking into the matter.
Liverpool taxi drivers will face random drugs tests after a policy was approved by the city's licensing committee.
City manager Kevin Johnson said urine testing was "a necessary step" after 114 drivers were arrested on suspicion of drug-driving between May 2018 and May 2019.
He said the council must "act in the interest of public safety".
Taxi driver James Bradley said the move was "overdue" and "offers peace of mind to the public".
The city council said testing would begin before Christmas and licensed drivers will be chosen at random on a monthly basis to be tested.
If a driver refuses without reasonable cause, their licence could be revoked, a spokesman said.
Mr Johnson said drug use was "totally incompatible with being a licensed driver in Liverpool".
Mr Bradley said that although drug-driving was not a big problem in the city, the move was "overdue" and "offers peace of mind to the public".
"It's brilliant that it's happened," he said.
"I think almost all drivers will agree with it and all the reputable companies too."
Tom McIntyre, from the Unite union, said the move gave "reassurance for the travelling public", but added that rehabilitation should be offered to drivers who failed the test.
Wakefield Council has lost its appeal against a High Court judgement last year, which said they were overcharging local drivers who applied for a licence to trade.
That £384 fee included cash to help cover the costs of policing the industry and punishing drivers who broke the rules.
But three of the UK's top judges have ruled that that approach, which has been adopted by many local authorities, is unlawful.
Solicitors for Wakefield Council had argued that the policy was necessary to make its licensing department run self-sufficiently. Although the Court of Appeal said councils can still recover the costs of enforcement action from the taxi trade, rather than the taxpayer, they will now have to do so differently.
Drivers claimed that the council is now facing a bill of more than £1m in repayments for cases dating back to 2004. The local authority disputes that figure, and says drivers were only overcharged over the course of last year.
The council has also hit out at the High Court, claiming it failed to clarify what they were allowed to do at the original hearing 12 months ago.
The Wakefield District Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Association, which brought the original case before the courts last year, welcomed the ruling.
Chairman Abdul Rehman said: "We are of course very pleased that the Court of Appeal agreed with us and the High Court.
"We hope now the law has been clarified, the council will agree to meet with us to discuss how the council can refund the monies it has overcharged vehicle
owners to avoid further court action."
Glynn Humphries, the council's service director for the environment, said: “The legal position as to where enforcement costs could be attributed was unclear and (Wednesday's) judgement has clarified that the costs of enforcement should be met by the taxi trade through fees and should not be subsidised by the council tax payer.
“We very much welcome the clarity from (Wednesday's) judgement but are disappointed we didn’t get this in the High Court last year, which would have saved everyone involved time and money.
"The council will now review our position in light of the judgement and set up a process to enable drivers to log any claims as easily as possible and try and ensure we assess the claims as quickly as we can.
"We strongly believe that the £1million figure quoted by the taxi trade association does not apply to Wakefield at all.
"The fees were only applied to vehicles in January 2018 and charges were paused as we sought clarity from the court, which means that no drivers have been charged for this activity from December 2018.
"Going forward we will ensure that all charges are set against the criteria confirmed by the court."
The Local Government Association (LGA), which had been supporting Wakefield Council over the case, declined to comment.
“Taxi safety is a top priority for us and we take a tough line to protect passengers,” said Philip Mousdale, Pendle Council’s Corporate Director.
Pendle Council has won in court at three separate hearings where taxi drivers appealing against council decisions lost and Council decisions were upheld by the judges and a driver was prosecuted for overcharging a customer.
Khadim Hussain was refused a hackney carriage taxi driver’s licence following an argument with a female passenger.
When she got out of the taxi and noted down his details, he drove forward and ran into her.
Pendle Council revoked his licence and when he made a new application the Council refused it.
The judge said that refusal was “the proper approach” as what the driver had done was “reckless and could have caused serious injury”.
Another driver, Mohammed Haroon Bashir was refused a driver’s licence as he had multiple convictions.
The judge refused his appeal and he was ordered to pay £50 in costs.
A third driver, Altaf Ahmed, pleaded guilty to twice overcharging a woman with her husband who uses a wheelchair.
Ahmed was fined £290 for each offence and ordered to pay £100 in costs and a £30 victim surcharge.
Philip Mousdale said: “We work hard to make sure Pendle taxis are safe and we are urging people to take care.
“Now the festive season is here, we’re reminding people not to risk their safety by using taxis or private hire vehicles that are unlicensed.
“Unlicensed taxis are not insured to carry paying passengers,” he warned.
“And because they have not been examined by the Council, there are no assurances about the safety or road worthiness of these vehicles,” he warned.
Passengers can ask the driver to show their identity badge with their photo and Pendle Council logo on it.
Licensed private hire vehicles display a blue licence plate on the back of the vehicle together with the operator’s trading name on the front doors of the vehicle.
The licence plates also display the Council logo, the licence registration number of the taxi and vehicle details.
“Don’t get into any vehicle that is parked on the street or outside a pub other than a taxi parked on a taxi rank.
“If a vehicle is not displaying licence plates or their details do not match the vehicle, do not use it,” he said.
“If the taxi driver cannot show you his driver’s badge, do not use the vehicle and inform the Council’s Licensing Team on (01282) 661638 or contact the Police as soon as possible.
“At this time of year Pendle Council and the Police also remind passengers to show consideration and respect towards our taxi drivers. They do have a hard job,” added Philip.
“Pendle has a taxi pre-payment scheme in force and you may be asked to pay your fare upfront.
“This is to discourage arguments over fares or customers making off without paying,” he explained.
“Don’t forget our taxi drivers are there to get you home safely.
“Anyone assaulting a taxi driver, being racially abusive or causing damage to a taxi will be prosecuted,” he warned.
A taxi driver has been left badly shaken after he was choked and hit on the head during hijacking in Coalisland, Co Tyrone.
Three men jumped into the vehicle on Platers Hill just before 3.30am on Sunday.
While they were travelling, the men told the taxi driver to change destination, but when the driver refused, he was attacked.
Detective Sergeant Robinson said: “He was choked and hit on the head, but managed to get out of the car.
“The suspects then drove off in the car – a silver-coloured Skoda Octavia, which was later found abandoned on the Gortgonis Road.
“One of the men is described as wearing a black top, and another is described as being smaller in build with a goatee beard.
“As you can imagine, this was a traumatic ordeal, which has left a man badly shaken.
“I am appealing to anyone with information, or who may have noticed the Skoda Octavia, to contact detectives on 101 quoting reference number 275 of 08/12/19.”