Elderly in Grangemouth driven to complain about scheme

Elderly clients are looking for clarification on TaxiCard scheme guidelines
Elderly clients are looking for clarification on TaxiCard scheme guidelines

Elderly TaxiCard scheme users claim they have been poorly treated by certain drivers while others say they have actually been away.

According to Anne Lowe, co-ordinator of Grangemouth Community Care, a number of local residents have come to her with complaints about drivers who do not seem to know the TaxiCard criteria or guidelines.

She said: “The main complaint is some taxi drivers telling clients they are not suitable to receive the service. People also say some drivers go out of their way to be helpful, driving them home and even helping them in with their shopping, while other drivers just drop them at their destination and drive off.

“Two companies have even refused to take an elderly gentleman because they were worried he would take ill during the journey. It’s not clear what the TaxiCard criteria is for clients, or what is expected of taxi drivers.

“If this is happening in Grangemouth, then it is likely people are experiencing it in other areas of Falkirk.”

Falkirk Council is aware of the complaints and has informed Mrs Lowe of the guidelines for the scheme.

A spokesman said: “If someone is registered blind, or has serious impairment with regard to walking and mobility which means that, even if accompanied, they are normally unable to use ordinary buses, then they can apply for a TaxiCard.

“With specific regard to TaxiCard, and to taxis/private hire cars in general, there is no requirement for drivers to assist people other than boarding or alighting the vehicle itself.

“Passengers who require assistance from their home to or from the vehicle should consider joining Dial-a-Journey, where assistance can be provided to or from the passenger’s home and drivers will help with carrying shopping.”