OTTAWA: CTV NEWS : Owing to the Coronus-19 pandemic, Ottawa faces the prospect of no taxi service whatsoever at this month’s end thanks to Coventry Connections handling of the severe reduction of the city’s taxi fleet due to a severe drop in business.
Coventry Connections is the company that controls the overwhelming majority of Ottawa’s taxi fleet through its subsidiary brokers—namely BLUE LINE, CAPITAL TAXI and WESTWAY TAXI.
Coventry Connections is suspending an important part of its broker fees or stand rent that is charged to its drivers, namely various financial services to its drivers for which they are paying Coventry’s fees, namely liability insurance—the single largest portion of their stand rent costs.
Effective at the end of this month, driver-owners were told their insurance with Traveler’s Insurance—one of a handful of companies that will insure taxi fleets let alone single car or small fleet operators, is to be terminated, purportedly for arrears in insurance premiums.
Cab drivers are now expected to provide their own insurance. Drivers may continue operations with Coventry in the unlikely event they can prove to regulators and the company that they have adequate insurance for their cabs.
Taxi insurance rates in most jurisdictions, cost as much as $12,000 per year per car to fleets and usually, though not always, unavailable to single car Owner Operators.
Most taxi drivers will likely be forced off the road entirely as such premiums are unaffordable to drivers especially when required to pay the full amount at the beginning of coverage without severe indebtedness.
Beginning in June 2020 there’s a very real possibility that Ottawa will have no taxi service at all.