Taxi drivers have been reminded not to wait in front of Brighton Station after a number of complaints.
Brighton and Hove City Council sent the reminder to cabbies because a small number have been spotted waiting in Queen’s Road on zig-zags, double yellow lines and at bus stops.
People can flag down taxis in front of the station but pre-booked vehicles are meant to use the pick-up and drop-off point at the back of the station.
Drivers breaking the rules risk having their licence revoked, suspended or not renewed if they break the by-laws.
The council can also take drivers to court for breaching by-laws, resulting in fines of up to £500.
The council’s regulatory services manager Jim Whitelegg and Green councillor Steve Davis, the deputy chair of the council’s Licensing Committee, sent a letter to all drivers and proprietors on Tuesday 4 January.
They said: “If you are a licensed driver that is stopping at the front of Brighton Station looking to be hired, then please stop this practice immediately.
“While we sympathise with the financial stress brought about by the pandemic, we cannot allow this practice to continue.
“You must abide by the rules and conditions of your licence and the legislation as set by Parliament.”
When the council’s Licensing Committee met on Thursday (17 February), councillors were told that the situation had improved although another complaint had been received in the past week.
Green councillor Sue Shanks said that she had approached drivers parked at the front.
She said: “I usually don’t complain but usually say, ‘excuse me, are you a bus?’ It’s good to know there is a legal basis for me reminding them.
“The taxi rank generally is working quite well at the back of the station.”
Labour councillor Carmen Appich said that she had reported issues at the front of the station in the past and had recently seen taxis dropping off passengers at bus stops there.
She said: “They’re making buses late in the pouring rain, splashing passengers, causing a nuisance, then waiting and picking up other passengers.
“If you’re a passenger on the bus, you’re not going to make the bus even later and take a photograph of that and email it in and complain.
“You’re just going to get on the bus and mutter about it and get on with your life.”
Councillor Appich said that bus drivers should be encouraged to report taxis waiting in the wrong place.
Green councillor Lizzie Deane said that she had received repeated complaints from a resident who was concerned that taxi drivers were dropping people off in Guildford Road, outside their house, causing a nuisance.
Councillor Deane, who chairs the Licensing Committee, asked officials to look into the complaint.