Booking a ride-hailing service like Uber or Grab is a norm for some people in their daily commute around the city.
However, following the increasing number of cases where the safety of female passengers is threatened, with the latest being an alleged rape case in Seri Kembangan, the public is beginning to think twice before hailing a ride.
As a result, the Land Public Transportation Commission (SPAD) announced on Tuesday that there will be five new guidelines e-hailing service providers must follow
1) Submit records of drivers
E-hailing operators are required to send records of their drivers to SPAD to conduct background checks. The Commission will work in line with other enforcement agencies to perform thorough screenings, including the Road Transport Department and the police.
2) Furnish data of drivers with traffic offences or misconduct
If a driver is found to have committed a traffic offence or problems of misconduct, the e-hailing service must submit such data to SPAD every month to enable the Commission to blacklist their names and prevent them from switching to another e-hailing operator.
3) Send monthly report of drivers’ ratings
E-hailing service providers must also submit their drivers’ ratings data every month in order for SPAD to help resolve issues regarding the driver’s service in a more proactive manner. The lower their ratings are, the higher chances of them getting banned.
4) Use a more comprehensive profiling process of drivers
SPAD called for all e-hailing operators to adopt a more comprehensive identification process of each driver as a risk-mitigation policy. This act will enable them to filter potential high-risk drivers.
5) Speed up implementation of SOS button
SPAD also directed e-hailing services to expedite the implementation of a panic button in their apps, as requested by the Commission last week
. This SOS button should link to the police as an added security feature for passengers to notify the police in case of an emergency.
These new regulations will take effect from 16 June onwards
. And once the full regulation of e-hailing is passed in Parliament, SPAD expects all the service providers to practise the highest standards of safety and quality service.
The Commission also added that it will penalise e-hailing operators or drivers who violate the law, including confiscating their vehicles.