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COVID-19 safety guidelines for taxi and private hire drivers

COVID-19 safety guidelines for taxi and private hire drivers

Check for COVID-19 symptoms

You should work if you're not putting anyone at risk.

There's no longer a legal requirement for people with COVID-19 to self-isolate.

If you have any of the main symptoms of COVID-19 or a positive test result, the public health advice is to stay at home and avoid contact with other people.

Get a test

If you do not have COVID-19 symptoms you can order free rapid (lateral flow) tests from GOV.UK.

Face coverings

COVID-19 spreads through the air by droplets that are exhaled from the nose and mouth of an infected person.

Whilst there's no longer a legal requirement to wear a face covering, the government suggests that you continue to wear one in crowded and enclosed spaces, especially where you come into contact with people you don't usually meet, when rates of transmission are high.

You cannot refuse to carry a passenger with an exemption for not wearing a face covering.

Clean your vehicle inside and out, before each and every journey

Before starting your shift

You should wipe down all the surfaces in your vehicle that are likely to be touched, with disinfectant or alcohol hand gel. This includes any common contact points such as: 

  • door handles, inside and outside
  • safety belts
  • handholds
  • boot release

This must be done before starting your shift and after each and every journey.

Between shifts

You should clean the vehicle thoroughly between shifts. Especially if you share the vehicle with other drivers, and this includes the steering wheel and all controls.

Wash your hands

Handwashing

You should wash your hands as often as possible.

You should wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds whenever possible, and always after going to the toilet and before and after eating and drinking. 

Hand sanitizers

You should carry a suitable alcohol based hand gel or wipes to clean your hands: 

  • at the start of the day
  • regularly throughout the day
  • after assisting a customer physically
  • having contact with baggage or other items
  • after using a fuel pump and paying for your fuel

Keep your vehicle ventilated

You should keep your vehicle windows open as often as you can. This will increase air flow for you and your passengers.

Take contactless payments

All Hackney carriage vehicles must now have a card reader installed.

We advise drivers of private hire vehicles to install card readers if they're able to.

This is a safer method of payment than handling cash.

Try to social distance yourself and your passengers

From 24 February 2022,  all social distancing restrictions have been lifted. Lifting restrictions does not mean that the risks from COVID-19 have disappeared. Instead, you need to manage the risks to yourself and others.

Where possible try to avoid physical contact with your passengers. 

Collecting passengers with accessibility needs

You’re still under the same legal obligation to give reasonable assistance to passengers who may need it. This includes passengers who use wheelchairs.