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Berlin Bans Car Service Uber 341

An anonymous reader is just one of many who have pointed out that things don't look good for Uber in Berlin. Berlin has banned car service Uber, which allows users to summon a ride on their smartphone, for not offering drivers and vehicles licensed to carry passengers, or full insurance cover, the German capital said. The ban takes immediate effect and Uber risks fines of up to 25,000 euros each time it violates the city's Public Transport Act, Berlin authorities said in a statement. Uber said on Thursday it would appeal against the decision, accusing Berlin of denying its people choice and mobility. "As a new entrant we are bringing much-needed competition to a market that hasn't changed in years. Competition is good for everyone and it raises the bar and ultimately it's the consumer who wins," said Fabien Nestmann, German General Manager at Uber. Undaunted by the setback in Berlin, Uber has launched uberTAXI in Hong Kong.
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Berlin Bans Car Service Uber

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  • by Joe_Dragon ( 2206452 ) on Thursday August 14, 2014 @11:01PM (#47675231)

    liability coverage is needed []

    victims should not be holding the bag when drivers like this have insurance that uses loop holes to get out of covering victims. Taxis and other "commercial transport license" drivers have insurance that covers them all the time.

  • by Noah Haders ( 3621429 ) on Thursday August 14, 2014 @11:29PM (#47675325)

    No real person has ever heard of "Lyft".

    very true. except its a $3.5 billion company with revenues of $100 million / year and service growing 6% per week -> 20x per year, compounded. there must be a lot of unreal people out there.

  • by angel'o'sphere ( 80593 ) on Thursday August 14, 2014 @11:53PM (#47675413) Journal

    In Germany, if they carry less than 8 passengers and if their vehicles are below a certain weight, then they don't need to take a different driving test.
    That is incorrect. This is only valid if you don't commercially transport passengers.
    If you actually do transport passengers comercially, you need an extra driving license, and you need the same extra license if you transport more than 7 or 8 people _non_ commercially (in one vehicle) like e.g. if you bring boy scouts into a camp. Every bus driver bringing kids to school has such a license!

    outdated local geography test that has been rendered completely useless by mobile applications such as Google Maps Navigation and Waze.
    Well, I usualy have trips that are not longer than 15 minutes, and I appreciate it if the driver does not need 2 mins to set up the navigation first, especially if the spelling of the target is odd.

    In the US, Uber covers you for up to one million dollars.
    Erm, do you actually own a car? I guess not.
    My private, standard, insurance for my private car, with no intent to be used commercially is insured up to 10 million Euro (damage to persons). That is a very normal rate, I doubt you can even get a lower one.

    My bet is that you'll probably have better coverage when you travel as a passenger/driver with Uber than if you were to drive yourself personally
    Certainly not. Damage to yourself is not covered by your car insurance. That is covered by your health and/or accident insurance or 'out of job insurance' in case you can no longer work.

  • by westlake ( 615356 ) on Friday August 15, 2014 @01:27AM (#47675665)

    Hahaha, you make it sound as if "being licensed" has some implication of advanced skill.

    and maybe you don't know as much as you think you do:

    The following are required by 1st time applicants for a Personenbeforderungsschein

    Formal Application Antrag (obtained at the driver licensing office, usually the Road Traffic Office of the Community or Parish)

    Personalausweis or passport (in combination with a valid personal registration)

    Fuhrerschein (only the standard EU-Driving Licence is acceptable)

    Medical Report from a Doctor specialised in ''Arbeitsmedizin'' or a Dr. with a qualification in ''Betriebsmedizin'' or a Report from a Reporting Institute for physical and mental driving competence. Info regarding which Drs. can do this is given by the Road Traffic Office. (The diagnostics relate to Stress, Reaction and Perception testing.)

    Opticians Report or Certificate

    Medical confirmation of Physical and Mental ability.

    Fuhrungszeugnis (Criminal Record Report) with NO entries (for Official use only)

    Extract from the Central Traffic Register Kraftfahrt-Bundesamtes in Flensburg

    Ortskenntnisnachweis Proof of Knowledge (for the relevant district for Hire cars in Communities with population over 50.000).

    Questions are to be answered regarding Places of Interest, Public Buildings, City districts. Generally routes will also be tested by giving starting and finishing points and allowing the candidate to describe the shortest route. Usually the Taxi company intending to employ the candidate will assist with the preparation for this test.

    Knowledge test for taxi drivers in Germany. Is there one? Advice on working as a cabbie. []
    [Germany's English-speaking crowd. May 2010]

  • by pablo_max ( 626328 ) on Friday August 15, 2014 @02:07AM (#47675765)

    While I agree with you that most people cannot tolerate hipsters, I disagree with your assertion that most people will put up with unlicensed taxi drivers.
    I travel all over Europe and Asian as part of job and for personal reasons and I have learned one thing..NEVER take unofficial taxis. EVER.
    Oversight and regulation of certain industries are not a bad thing.

  • by Trepidity ( 597 ) <> on Friday August 15, 2014 @05:23AM (#47676155)

    If you have personal auto insurance and you drive the vehicle commercially, the insurance will not pay out: driving commercially violates the terms of personal auto insurance, so you voided the policy. So you are that case, despite claiming to be insured. If you drive commercially, you need commercial auto insurance to actually have a policy that is valid.

If it's not in the computer, it doesn't exist.