The march of Uber continues as the company’s latest battleground is in Barrie, Ontario, the latest municipality trying to wrestle with implementing regulatory control of ride-sharing companies. Taxi representatives in the city are pushing the government to implement Quebec style regulations that would see Uber drivers forced to obey the same regulations as taxi drivers.
The finance and corporate services committee is preparing a meeting to discuss how best to deal with the rise of Uber in Barrie. Other cities in Canada set a mixed precedent. It has become clear that finding regulations for the company is the best course, but in response Uber has either agreed with new laws or left markets entirely.
Arguably either scenarios works out for Barrie councilors. In the meantime, and before Uber makes its own decision, the city must draw those regulations, once again pitting Uber against taxi drivers. It is unlikely that Uber will be forced to impose equal rules on its drivers as taxi operatives, and insurance remains the main stumbling block.
Taxi drivers face high costs to insure a vehicle, while Uber drivers have an affordable option in Aviva Canada’s ride-sharing specific policy. Taxi drivers want a party where Uber drivers have the same costs and unions have accused the city of protecting Uber drivers from paying appropriate insurance rates.
Uber sees it differently, sticking to the party line that its drivers are in fact insured:
“Uber maintains insurance for bodily injury and property damage to third parties. We also have a well-established claim notification process. Upon being notified, we work with our riders or partners to notify appropriate insurers of a claim.”