Sofia Taxis Table Massive Fines after Inspection RaidBusiness | April 11, 2012, Wednesday // 17:06| views
Taxis parked at Sofia International Airport. File photo, BGNES
Bulgarian capital Sofia's taxis were fined for a total amoutn close to BGN 100,000 during a surprise raid by state Automobile Administration Agency.
The agency conducted the surprise inspection for 8 hours Tuesday and Wednesday, for which time it issued close to 200 fine tickets grossing to the above amount.
Inspectors targeted not only taxis, but also minibus routed share taxis, popularly known in Eastern Europe as marshrutkas.
It appeared that it was the marshrutkas that gathered by far the most tickets for irregularities, with agents issuing 157 tickets for 235 minibusses checked.
The most popular regulation violations in the routed minibusses were failure to issue tickets, taking up more passengers than the capacity of the vehicle allows, no license card present with the driver, and failure to abide by working time and breaks regulations.
Automobile Administration officers also issued 35 tickets to the 180 regular taxis they checked, for breaches such as failure to present a license for driving a taxi, no name of the driver on the receipts, irregularities in drivers' documents, no permit from Sofia Municipality, as well as various irregularities in the payment meter device.
The Automobile Administration Agency recapitulated that for the first quarter of 2012 it has conducted checks on 53,918 regular taxis and marshrutkas, and has issued 3,211 tickets grossing more than BGN 1.5 M.
As a result of irregularities found during the inspections, the state regulartor reports it has banned from operation a total of 251 vehicles and/ or drivers.
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