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New taxi marshalling scheme helping to tackle crime and disorder in Exeter
A NEW taxi marshal scheme has been introduced in Exeter to help tackle crime and disorder, address anti-social behaviour and give those wishing to travel late at night an increased feeling of safety.
The marshals will manage taxi queues, stop queue-jumping, prevent assaults; both to taxi drivers and members of the public; and ensure that non-licensed taxis do not operate in the area. They will marshal both Fore Street and Sidwell Street taxi ranks each Saturday evening between midnight and 4am.
Police inspector Andrew Webber said: “This is an important initiative in preventing and reducing alcohol related problems which often lead to crime and disorder. Chaos in a taxi queue can result in anything from physical assault to a road traffic accident, if not controlled.”
the scheme has already seen over 2700 people pass safely through the taxi ranks. £7000 funding for its introduction was granted from the Baroness Newlove Alcohol Fund, money that supports community initiatives which aim to tackle drinking issues.
The initiative will operate until July 2013, providing sufficient data to assess sustainability and funding options for the future of it across the City Centre.
John Harvey, Exeter city centre manager said: “I’m delighted to see the launch of the taxi marshal scheme; one that will make a major contribution to improving the safety of Exeter at night and that sends a clear signal from the ‘community safety partnership’ that we are determined to crack down on drink related anti social and nuisance behaviour. We must deal robustly with the minority whose behaviour can spoil a visit to the city centre for decent law abiding individuals.”
Nick Holladay, chairman of Exeter Taxi Association added: “Taxi marshals help reduce crime, disorder and anti social behaviour which occurs around taxi ranks on busy nights. This helps residents and visitors enjoy the night culture of the city and hopefully helps them feel safe. The marshals keep an orderly queuing system making it a safer working environment for the taxi drivers”.
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