The more than 115,000 drivers licensed by the Taxi & Limousine Commission (TLC) to drive yellow taxis, Boro Taxis, car service vehicles ("liveries"), black cars, luxury limousines, ambulettes and commuter vans travel over 2 billion miles per year. They represent a highly visible component of the City's traffic and in many ways set the tone for driving in the City. TLC-licensed drivers are held to highest standards and promoting safety is the agency's highest priority. TLC's approach to pursuing the Vision Zero goal consists of initiatives ranging from education and technological innovation to legislation and enforcement.
One approach TLC has taken to deter dangerous driving behavior is leveraging red light camera technology that is already in place around the City. TLC has begun issuing summonses that generate points against drivers' TLC licenses when they are caught by red light cameras. TLC-licensed drivers who accumulate too many points against their licenses face suspension and revocation.
TLC is also using more boots-on-the-ground enforcement. TLC currently has over 170 officers who issue summonses to licensees and seize vehicles that are illegally posing as taxis or other types of TLC-licensed vehicles. The agency is adding approximately 35 new officers to aid in this effort and has already created a new TLC Safety Squad, which is equipped with LIDAR speed detection guns. The TLC Safety Squad is dedicated to enforcing against the dangerous driving choices, such as speeding and failure to yield - the primary or contributing cause of 70% of pedestrian fatalities. TLC officers have also been engaged in collaborations with the NYPD to enforce against individuals operating for-hire vehicles without the proper licenses and background checks.
In addition, legislative initiatives are strengthening TLC enforcement. TLC is implementing City Council legislation that ensures that, when TLC is notified that drivers it licenses are involved in serious crashes, the agency takes appropriate steps to evaluate whether the driver is fit to keep his or her license and, if appropriate, seek to suspend or revoke the license. Mayor de Blasio and the City Council also enacted legislation that calls for, for enforcement purposes, a combined evaluation of traffic violations issued by TLC officers with safety violations issued by the NYPD.