Flag falls on taxi operator

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Concern were raised last year about the long-term viability of the local regional taxi industry after historic State transport reform.
Camera IconConcern were raised last year about the long-term viability of the local regional taxi industry after historic State transport reform. Credit: The West Australian

Denmark’s sole taxi operator has closed leaving the town with no running taxi service.

The news comes after concerns were raised last year about the long-term viability of the local taxi industry after historic State transport reform.

Denmark Chamber of Commerce president Liz Jack has since organised a community meeting to discuss potential ways to fill the town’s taxi gap.

“We have facilitated a workshop and gathering with the Department of Transport to talk about the new taxi laws,” he said.

“The Community Resource Centre is also having a dialogue with some tourism operators that might consider filling the gap.”

Under the new transport scheme, metropolitan taxi operators can have their registration plates bought back by the State Government but the incentive is not offered to regional taxi companies.

Last year, one of three Albany taxi operators announced its closure because of the changes, taking seven taxis off the road.

Ms Jack said regional taxi drivers provided a vital service to the elderly community as well the tourism sector. “The main concerns are coming from the elderly people living at home — they rely heavily on taxis,” she said.

“So there’s social isolation from the perspective of the elderly and also from the tourism sector.”

Ms Jack said there would be more discussions about the taxi shortage with the Department of Transport in the near future.

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