Are pedicabs Legal in NYC
The city is putting the heat on rickshaw drivers, seizing an illegal pedicab and issuing over twenty violations in a recent enforcement sweep after new regulations went into effect over the summer.
The Department of Consumer Affairs nailed drivers in three checkpoints in Central Park with the NYPD and Parks Department Police near 59th Street and 7th Avenue, Bethesda Terrace, and Strawberry Fields.
Inspectors checked 74 bikes, and seized one after busting an illegal driver that did not have a license.
“I think this new set of regulations will lead to a much tighter control of the industry, ” said Commissioner Jonathan Mintz. “I hope the pedicab industry can focus on training their industry members to be a more cohesive and professional industry, rather than a collection of people in-fighting and breaking the rules. But time will tell.”
Pedicabbies were hit with 21 summonses, largely for not following new regulations that went into effect on July 12– such as not having proper signs or equipments, or improperly filling out pedicab information cards. The DCA also did a sweep in August, issuing 13 violations in six locations.
One hotheaded driver near the checkpoint flew off the handle when he felt he had been cheated by a customer– and threatened to shoot a Post photographer who snapped a picture of him, before pedaling off.
In the checkpoint near 59th Street, drivers argued with inspectors about the pedicab information cards, and said they were frustrated that they were stopped when they had passengers. “The customers just leave, it’s not fair to the industry at all, ” said lawyer Moira Brennan, who advocates for some of the pedicabs.
Mintz told the Post that in the beginning stages of the industry, the city gave pedicabs freedom in how they wanted to charge customers—but drivers abused this, triggering legislation from the City Council to regulate the pedicab industry much more tightly.
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