Taxi driver who caused woman to fall from car refused licence

Abdul Waheed Akbari asked Glasgow City Council to renew his licence for three years.

A taxi driver who caused an elderly woman to fall by driving off as she got into his car has been refused a new licence.

Abdul Waheed Akbari asked Glasgow City Council to renew his licence for three years.

However, licensing chiefs turned his request down after Police Scotland revealed he had been convicted in 2017 over the incident.

The committee heard how Mr Akbari had been collecting three passengers from Renfield Street.

A police spokeswoman said he began to drive off before they could all get into his car, “causing an elderly female passenger to fall out of the taxi and onto the ground”.

Mr Akbari stopped the taxi when she shouted for help.

Two passers-by then helped the woman back into the car. She later received pain relief for minor injuries from her local medical centre.

Mr Akbari was fined £425 and given three penalty points on his licence – but he failed to tell the council about the incident in his application.

He argued he had attended a meeting, for his previous licence, and explained the incident.

“I thought that was done,” he said.

“I explained everything at the time.”

However, licensing chairman Alex Wilson said: “At the time it wasn’t a conviction. At this time, you have now been found guilty.”

Mr Akbari then said he had been parked on a steep hill when the incident happened.

“I never drove off,” he claimed.

“The way they complained was I drove off with the passenger hanging out the door, but I never.

“The car moved a wee bit and the passenger fell.”

He added: “Since then, I haven’t had any issue with any customer at all.”

Councillor Malcolm Balfour asked whether his car’s dashboard showed when a door was still open.

He also queried: “When you’re stopped on a hill do you not engage your handbrake as well?”

Councillor Gary Gray asked: “Does your car have wing mirrors? Why didn’t you use them on the night?

“Surely before you would move off, you would check your mirrors.”

Mr Akbari, who has been a taxi driver since 2013, said the light on his dashboard was broken at the time, adding: “I didn’t even drive, I just slightly took my foot off the brake and the car slightly moved.”

He also claimed the passenger had been drunk and unstable.

“This is the only incident that happened in the car, I’ve never had any problem,” the driver said.

Mr Wilson said: “You should have notified us in your renewal and you should have notified us after you were charged.

“If you had read the terms and conditions of your licence you would understand that.”

By local democracy reporter Drew Sandelands

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