(MENAFN - Jordan Times) Taxi drivers across the country will soon have to don uniforms under new regulations issued by the Land Transport Regulatory Commission (LTRC).
"Taxi drivers should reflect a civilised image of the country as they not only communicate with citizens but also deal with Arab and foreign tourists," LTRC Spokesperson Ikhlas Yousef told The Jordan Times on Saturday.
Under the new transport-related laws and regulations, which were published in the Official Gazette earlier this month, all taxi drivers will be required to wear a uniform that will be determined soon, she said.
"Some taxi drivers in the country do not wear appropriate outfits several wear only undershirts - this is not civilised and gives a negative image about the sector; in addition it makes passengers feel uncomfortable," Yousef added.
Under the recent LTRC regulations, taxi offices that apply for a licence to operate in the Kingdom should commit to having a uniform for their drivers, while those already licensed will have to rectify the situation when renewing their licence.
"The instructions will apply to all taxi offices, whether new or old. Even individuals who operate private taxis will be required to wear the uniform, which will be determined soon," Yousef noted.
Currently, there are 16,138 taxis in the Kingdom of which more than 11,000 operate in Amman, she said, adding that those who do not abide by the commission's regulations will be subject to fines based on how many times the violation is repeated.
The regulations also stipulate that any new taxi office that opens in the country should have at least one cab that is designed for persons with disabilities, and existing agencies will have to rectify their situation and introduce such taxis.
Mohammad Abdul Sattar, a taxi driver, commended the idea.
"If all taxi drivers commit to this, it will be good. I personally dress well when I go to work as the way I dress reflects my personality," the Hai Nazzal resident told The Jordan Times yesterday.
"Unfortunately, many of my colleagues do not dress well and that gives a negative image about us. I support having a nice uniform," he said.
Abed Shehadeh, who owns a private taxi, does not agree
"It is more convenient to wear what I want. On Fridays, I prefer wearing a disdash and in summer, when it very hot I prefer wearing a light T-shirt... a uniform might not be comfortable," he said.
"I think many taxi drivers will not abide by the regulations," Shehadeh added.
Mustafa Ahmad, a Jabal Al Nasser resident, said all taxi drivers should have one uniform.
"During the course of my life, I have seen many taxi drivers. Some were wearing a disdash, while others were in pyjamas or undershirts. This is not nice and uncivilised," the father of three said.
"I hope taxi drivers will commit to wearing a uniform, but I do not think all of them will comply. Taxi drivers deal a lot with tourists and they should reflect a positive image about the country appropriate attire is part of that image," Ahmad pointed out.