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Offices Of Taxi App Vandalised After They Use Private Vehicles

Friday 23rd May 2014

The office of taxi hire app Hailo has been vandalised after the company opened up its service to private hire vehicles. Picture: PA

Black cab drivers in London are angry that the service is being extended to other, private hire services, and the word "Scabs" has been scrawled on the wall of Hailo's London office.

Police were also called after a scuffle broke out.

Hailo was set-up by three London cab drivers, and the app allows users to book a taxi based on location, track its journey to them, and agree a payment method before entering the cab. 

Hailo co-founder Ron Zeghibe said in an open letter on the Hailo website: "There is no point burying our heads in the sand - people want a choice and taxis need to be in the mix.

"When we started, it was a straight fight between taxis and private hire. Now, it's not so simple. These are tough times that call for tough decisions - and that means doing what's right, not what's popular."

Steve McNamara, general secretary of the Licensed Taxi Drivers' Association said: "There's a lot of resentment and anger out there.

"When the app was set up it was done so under the idea of supporting black cab drivers, and they saw it as fighting back against the private hires. So now the guys just feel betrayed. There's a huge amount of frustration."

London cab drivers are also planning a protest next month against services like Uber, which cab drivers say is not subject to the same regulation that licensed drivers are.