Tuesday, December 18, 2012

How to file a complaint against taxis who charge Sumner Tunnel fare to East Boston residents

From a reader: 
I, myself, am almost always charged the Sumner Tunnel toll by taxi drivers, for them to go back through the tunnel to return to Boston, even though it's the law that they aren't supposed to charge East Boston residents. When this happens, I go to: www.cityofboston.gov/police/hackney/taxi.asp and then click on Complaints & Lost Property and compete the form.  And then Hackney gets a money order from the taxi driver and mails me the reimbursement for what I was overcharged.  And, to top it off, even though the drivers charge the Tunnel fare, they don't return to Boston via the Tunnel.  They go down Meridian Street, and through Chelsea and Everett, into Boston via Route 99. 
I've complained to both LaMattina's and Basile's offices about this, and am always told they'll pass along the message and look into it but, as far as I can tell, nothing has been done.  I've asked them to propose legislation to allow Hackney to charge the drivers a penalty when this happens.  As of right now, the only "punishment" is that they have to present a money order to reimburse the passenger what they overcharged.  That's not a consequence, since they're only giving back money that was stolen in the first place.  If there were some sort of punishment (especially monetary), maybe they wouldn't take a chance to overcharge.  As of now, it's worth the chance, because there's no punishment, so why not try..."  

Sunday, December 16, 2012

No Sunday Morning Peace on Meridian Street thanks to Taxis

The latest from Friends of Meridian Street
Sleep in late? Get the kids ready for church? Plan a nice quite Sunday morning? NOT ON MERIDIAN STREET, EAST BOSTON!!!! We residents of East Boston that live on and around Meridian Street, East Boston get to hear, see, smell, breath and dodge the steady stream of hundreds of empty Logan taxis that bless our streets again this morning and all day long. But that's O.K. as the multi-million dollar Coughlin Bypass Road that these Logan taxis are supposed to be using gets to rest so us East Boston resident taxpayers can have a nice quiet Sunday morning. Not! We are still waiting for our State, East Boston officials and our friendly, cooperative Massport officials to make this right. Hopefully those of you in East Boston that don't live on Meridian Street can get a peaceful Sunday morning.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Friends of Meridian Street still upset over taxi traffic

Every day, seven days a week, 365 days a year from 4am to 6:30am there are hundreds of taxis that bypass the tolls via Meridian Street to the Meridian Street Bridge. Approximately 90 to 95% of the traffic at this time weekdays are empty Logan Airport taxis driving on Meridian Street to the bridge. It would be impossible to take all the plate numbers down without a video camera. In addition, there are Logan taxis using Meridian Street at all times of the day and night to bypass the tunnel. The Boston Police Department must be well aware of this as they drive right by the station. The elected officials of East Boston, and the Massachusetts Department of Environment and the BPD's Hackney Division have all been notified about this in the past.

Update from the Office of district city councilor Sal LaMattina: "I am waiting to hear from DOT to find out if there are any laws regarding toll avoiding.  Clearly they are charging their passengers $5.50 for the tolls. I am as frustrated too."