Taxi Drivers Overcharged Riders by Upwards of $1.1 Million, TLC Says

By Ben Fractenberg on May 14, 2010 5:12pm 

Cabs drive through Times Square.
Cabs drive through Times Square.
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By Ben Fractenberg

DNAinfo Reporter/Producer

MANHATTAN β€” Taxi drivers bilked riders out of an estimated $1.1 million in fares, the Taxi and Limousine Commission has acknowledged.

The TLC had found 286,000 separate incidents of overcharging, the New York Post reported Friday.

The numbers come from a study made public by the Taxi and Limousine Commission after a March report said some cabbies had been charging out-of-town rates while driving within the city.

The March study that thousands of cabbies deliberately overcharged close to 2 million riders by $8.3 million. The commission then ordered an internal audit, which appears to show riders were overcharged for $1.1 million.

β€œThe TLC has completed its review of the data, as we had committed to do,” Commissioner David Yassky was quoted as saying in The Post. β€œThe data suggests that only a fraction of a percent of rides were overcharged and the majority of our taxi drivers do a great job, exhibiting the integrity that we expect and demand of our licensees."

Out of 21,819 drivers reported to cheat passengers by charging out-of-town rates roughly half did so one or two times, The Wall Street Journal reported Friday. The commission said this backs up the claims of some drivers that riders were charged an extra amount on accident.

The TLC also said they can prove that some drivers took part in over 1,000 instances of overcharging.

Drivers who rip off riders more than 50 times will have their license revoked, The Journal reported. Those who overcharge between 10 and 49 times will have the option of turning their license or facing a $1,000 to $5,000 fine.

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