All taxicab drivers in Los Angeles will be required to use mobile apps similar to Uber and Lyft by this summer, according to a measure passed by the Los Angeles Taxicab Commission this week.
The order, passed on a 5-0 vote, requires every driver and cab to sign onto a city-certified “e-hail” app by Aug. 20 or face a $200-a-day fine. The move is seen as a way to make taxicab companies more competitive with rideshare apps such as Uber and Lyft.
Los Angeles cab companies reported a 21% drop in taxi trips in the first half of 2014 compared with the same period the previous year, the steepest drop on record. Cab companies largely attribute the drop to the popularity of app-based ride services.
There are still lots of details to work out, such as what requirements officials will use to certify the apps and whether the city should approve one e-hail provider, build one or allow for multiple options.
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