Kinsale Facing Taxi Shortage
Writes JJ Hurley
A recent post on the Kinsale Notice Board Facebook Page suggested that many of the town’s weekend revelers are clearly unhappy at the lack of taxis in the popular sea-side tourist destination, particularly on Saturday and Sunday nights.
One resident, who contacted the Carrigdhoun directly on the issue said: “Regarding taxis in Kinsale, when it’s busy you could really be waiting up to three hours for a taxi on weekend nights.”
In response to the many complaints, Mr. Damien Hanrahan, who operates one of the largest cab firms in the town, Kinsale Cabs, said: “The issue was fast reaching crisis point, where he simply couldn’t recruit drivers because of a number of influencing factors.”
Top of his list preventing the hiring of additional divers is the seasonal nature of the business in Kinsale, with many drivers preferring to stay in Cork, where work is guaranteed for the entire year.
He also went on to suggest that it’s easy to have numerous cars on call on Saturday and Sunday nights but trying to keep a fleet of cabs occupied from Monday to Thursday is very difficult.
As for employing new drivers, the changes to the test for the SPSV licence under the taxi regulatory had made it more difficult for potential drivers to pass the test and he also found it difficult to secure drivers to work on weekend nights.
Many of the current crop of drivers are either people who have recently retired or have taken early retirement, but this pool may yet provide a solution to the shortage of cabs, with Mr. Hanrahan appealing to anyone fancying a career change or seeking a part-time job to contact him.
Indeed, so problematic has the issue become that one group of friends have set up a system where one individual becomes a designated driver, on call for one in ten weekends.