Uber on Monday won a major legal battle over its London license as a judge ruled in favor of the ride-hailing major, while overturning a ban on the app by the city’s transport regulator.
Giving his down verdict in the case between Uber London Limited and Transport for London (TfL) at the Westminster Magistrates’ Court, Judge Tanweer Ikram said he had found Uber fit to hold the license.
“Despite their historical failings, I find (Uber), now, to be a fit and proper person to hold a London PHV (private hire vehicle) operator’s license,” Ikram said in his judgement.
Uber London Limited brought the appeal against the decision of the city’s transport regulator last year not to renew its London Private Hire Vehicle operator’s license over passenger safety concerns.
TfL had cited a “pattern of failures” by the company including several breaches that placed passengers and their safety at risk.
The watchdog said that a change to Uber’s systems allowed unauthorized drivers to upload their photos to other Uber driver accounts.
This allowed them to pick up passengers as though they were the booked driver, which occurred in at least 14,000 trips – putting passenger safety and security at risk, it had alleged.
TfL said that another failure allowed dismissed or suspended drivers to create an Uber account and carry passengers, again compromising passenger safety and security.
To address the passenger safety concerns raised by the regulator, Uber had launched a new system in April to verify the identities of drivers through a mix of human reviewers and facial recognition, CNBC reported.
Uber London was still able to continue operations despite losing its license as it appealed the ban.