- Posted November 3, 2008 by
Chongqing Taxi Strike
Today the roads were empty of taxi's because of a large strike. All day today from early morning until late at night there were still no taxi's on the road. The cabs you did see all had their illuminated plastic advertising boards that sit on the roof of the cars removed. Also they had the stickers on the side of their cabs removed as well. The fare boxes inside the cabs were intact though.
Reports say one of the things the cab drivers were protesting the hefty traffic fines. Frankly the streets of Chongqing are lawless, no one bothers to pay attention to the traffic laws. There is a stop light out in front of my old school, now they don't bother to turn it on anymore because no one paid any attention to it. Add to the fact that the roads are so dangerous because no one here has properly learned how to drive. Taxi's are the worst offending of the vehicles on the road here closely followed by buses and lorries. Once I was out at night eating dinner at a street side restaurant and a small child crossing the road, maybe 4-5 years old was hit by a taxi right in front of us, the driver never bothered to get out of the car, and when someone picked up the child he simply drove off. Another time we saw a middle aged man hit by a taxi and he went flying over the roof of the thing, the taxi bolted away as usual.
The streets of Chongqing are a very dangerous place, this year in fact I have witnessed something like 7 or 8 accidents. No one bothers to enforce the traffic laws and red lights are as one of my friends put it "just a suggestion". Reports said taxi drivers here get about 10 tickets a months....thats all? Take a trip in a taxi here in Chongqing, they should probably get 10 tickets just for that single journey.
There are many "laws" about taxi's here, none of them are followed, and many regard the drivers as dishonest and there is little sympathy here for them.
My friends and I have a little joke too, we said we all know how we will die, in a Chongqing taxi of course.