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Uber, Lyft, Others Cause 65 Percent Drop in SF Taxi Rides: Report

Consider the San Francisco taxi industry disrupted. A new report shows that taxi rides have dropped dramatically since Uber came on the scene.
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When people need a ride up San Francisco's steep hills, they are increasingly turning to Uber and other ride-sharing services over traditional taxicabs, according to a report from the city's Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA). The number of cab rides in San Francisco has plummeted 65 percent over the last 15 months, the report claims, putting the blame on Uber, Lyft and other companies that connect independent drivers with passengers through a smartphone app. The decline looks pretty dramatic when visualized as a graph by the SFMTA:

San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency

"We are at a real crossroads here," Kate Toran, director of SFMTA's Taxis and Accessible Services Division, told the agency's board. She added that services like "Uber X, Lyft and Sidecar have dramatically changed the landscape of the for-hire transportation industry." Taxicab drivers around the world have complained -- and occasionally protested -- over what they see as unfair competition from drivers who don't need to obtain the same insurance and licenses that they do.

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— Keith Wagstaff