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Last Updated: Thursday, 12 April 2007, 17:18 GMT 18:18 UK
Tuk-tuks to operate across city
Tuk-tuk vehicle
Tuk-tuks were launched across Brighton and Hove last July
Brighton's tuk-tuks are to offer a pre-booked service and operate across the city instead of using set "bus stops", it has been revealed.

Tuc Tuc Ltd has called the move "a transport revolution", but the city's taxi drivers have objected, claiming the three-wheeled rickshaws are unsafe.

Executive Director Dominic Ponniah said his firm was not out "to replace taxis" and the reaction was "disappointing".

He said full details of the new service were due to be announced in early May.

But he said the service would be pre-booked, operating across the city with a 24-hour service, under a special bus licence.

We have never advertised ourselves as a taxi service
Dominic Ponniah

People will be able to phone the firm and book a tuk-tuk at any time, he added.

He said: "We have a lot of support from the public.

"It is disappointing that the usual suspects - the taxi fraternity - are disappointed and not happy with us."

Mr Ponniah said: "We have never advertised ourselves as a taxi service and we never will be.

"Taxis will always be there and provide a brilliant service."

Complaints about the tuk-tuks from taxi drivers led to a public inquiry last year.

The new licence, granted by the Traffic Commissioner, is a flexible bus licence which allows the rickshaws to carry passengers who have booked in advance from 23 May.

Under the terms, each rickshaw will have a full safety inspection every 10 weeks, and each tuk-tuk will carry no more than three passengers.

Legal action over tuk-tuk delay
07 Apr 07 |  Sussex
Bigger vehicles for tuk-tuk firm
21 Dec 06 |  Southern Counties
Tuk-tuks fined for licence breach
03 Nov 06 |  Southern Counties

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