The Government’s stance on the requirement of private hire car drivers is to have the drivers to have a minimum driving experience of two years should be adequate to reasonably ensure passenger safety, said Minister for Transport Khaw Boon Wan.
Mr Zainal Sapari MP of the Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC had asked the Minister whether the Ministry will consider having a minimum age of 27 years for drivers of private hire vehicles based on accident-age risk assessment of drivers.
The Minister said that there is no need to discriminate on the basis of age, saying, “In fact, where safety is concerned, the number of years of driving experience may be more important than age.”
“An older person who has just gotten his driving licence might be less confident behind the wheels, compared to a younger person, say 25 years old, who has been driving for a few years,” he added.
For Grab and Uber drivers, the minimum age for their private hire drivers is above the age of 21 and as what the Minister has mentioned, a minimum two years of driving experience.
In comparison, according to the Land Transport Authority, a taxi driver must be at least 30 years old of age and have a valid class 3/3A driving license for a continuous period of at least a year at the point of application.
The applicants is then to undergo a training course at the Singapore Taxi Academy which cost $335 which has 5 modules and takes 95 hours to complete.
Taxi drivers have been complaining about the unfair regulation that is placed upon them and the amount of leeway that the private hires have. Some have also complained that the union has been useless in protecting their interest.