NFTA issues first violation to Lyft driver

CHEEKTOWAGA, N.Y. (WIVB) – “Ridesharing” services are becoming more popular. However if operators don’t have the proper documentation, police could ticket drivers, issue summonses or even impound their cars.

This week the NFTA issued their first set of violations against a Lyft operator.

“An individual drove his private vehicle onto airport property to pick up two individuals and allegedly engaged in a transaction to transport those two individuals for an agreed upon fare” said Doug Hartmayer, NFTA Director of Public Affairs.

The male driver, whose name hasn’t been released, was issued three violations for not having the right insurance, operating out of class and improper registration.

Each violation carries of fine of $75 dollars. “Or he can plead not guilty and present himself before a hearing officer” said Hartmayer.

Paige Thelen, a spokeswoman for Lyft, said the company is covering the cost of the citation.

Thelen issued the following statement regarding Lyft vehicles being operated the area. “We do not believe that drivers violate any current city law, our team will continue to work with the city to answer questions about Lyft’s peer-to-peer business model and commitment to safety” said Thelen.

However some taxi cab drivers would like to see Lyft gone for good. They claim its taking money away from them. They say they’re upset Lyft drivers are operating without paying for proper licenses.

“We pay a certain amount of money for a hacker’s license…and the cost of the insurance and they’re doing it for free” said John Cheson of Cold Spring Taxi.

For example in Cheektowaga taxi drivers need a special license in order to drop off or pick up a client in town.

“It’s not fair” said Cheson. “What is every other township going to do? Are we going to pick up a fare and have to drop them off at the city limits?”.

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