HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - You could Call it War of the local cabbies… the battle of the “for hire” services in Hattiesburg is getting dirty.
Yellow Cab complains that its competitors are using personalized plates instead of the required “taxi” plates. They also complain that lettering on the side of the vehicles are not properly painted on and those vehicles might not be operating under proper insurance laws. Hattiesburg city ordinance also requires a building located within the city limits with a dispatcher on duty 24/7.
Randy Duhon, owner of Country Cab says he realizes now that he was operating illegally and has now applied for proper paper work to operate within the city of Hattiesburg. He also alleges he had multiple complaints from customers of Yellow that complain of odor and the lack of cleanliness in the cab; which coincidently is also a city ordinance.
No matter which side may or may not be operating legally, police will be on the look-out for all taxi vehicles.
Lt. Jon Traxler says, “They may get pulled over and checked for their proper identification, things like that…the stuff they know they're required to have and of course if they don't have it they could receive a citation and the fine for that is a fine of up to $1000 or 90 days in jail or even both. So again, the safety of our citizens is our utmost concern here so that's one of the reasons we're working on this here to try to follow up on it and investigate the complaints that we've been given.”
The City of Hattiesburg issued this statement
"This letter comes to advice of the receipt of a complaint Filed by area taxi services complaining of violations of other taxi services running in the Hattiesburg area. According to the complainant, these taxi services are allegedly running without proper permits, license plates, and or insurance. After contacting at least one of the companies, the owner promptly came into City Hall for information regarding what he would need for approval to conduct business in the city of Hattiesburg.
The matter has since been referred to the Hattiesburg police department for further review."