UberPOP drivers fined €450,000 by Dutch authorities
Alternative taxi service Uber paid 450 thousand euros in fines on behalf of UberPOP drivers caught working as unlicensed cab drivers in the Netherlands. The Environment and Transportation Inspectorate in the Netherlands targeted UberPOP 33 times last year, arresting 40 people, according to a report from Secretary Sharon Dijksma sent to Parliament on Friday.
UberPOP drivers have no official taxi licence. Both that and the fact that UberPop cars do not comply with Dutch taxi regulations, lead to a court declaring the service illegal. Uber nevertheless continued to offer the UberPOP, but continued actions against the drivers led the alternative taxi service to first scale UberPOP down to regular customers only and then stopping it completely.
This is a big part of the reason why Inspectorate actions against UberPop saw a significant drop in the second half of last year. In the first half of 2015 the Inspectorate targeted UberPop 20 times and arrested 37 people. In the second half there were only four actions aimed at the service with three arrests.
UberPOP is now no longer available in the Netherlands. But Uber still offers the services UberX and UberBlack. Drivers for these services have a valid taxi license and thus complies to Dutch rules.