LANHAM, Md. (CBSDC) — The D.C. Taxicab Commission predicts that up to 25 percent of cabs will not have the ability to accept credit cards by the Sept. 30 deadline.

About 7,000 cabs are registered to operate in D.C., and only 3,000 or so already have card readers installed, according to commission spokesman Neville Waters.

Waters says the commission predicts that as many as 5,900 and as few as 5,200 taxis will be upgraded by the end of the month.

As for the other 1,100 to 1,800 cabs — “when those vehicles are found not in compliance they will be towed and impounded until they have an installation scheduled,” he said.

The commission has a few predictions about why so many drivers have not yet made their vehicles compliant.

“A significant number of drivers who are older may have decided it’s just easier for them to retire at this point in time,” Waters said.

Same goes for part-time drivers. Others may have elected to switch to a “sedan-class” license, meaning their services would be booked digitally or through smartphone apps and not subjected to the same rules as hailed cabs.

Despite the changes, “I think that the number of cabs that will be in the market will be adequate to cover the needs of the riding public,” Waters said.

The commission encourages the public to help make them aware of non-compliant cabs beginning on Sept. 30 by calling 855-484-4966 or emailing with the cab company name, vehicle number and the driver’s displayed “face ID” information.


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