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Back to school: how to choose a school-run taxi

Many families rely on a good quality taxi service for their children’s school run to ensure that they are delivered safely and on time. In some cases, the taxi company is chosen by the Local Authority, but for other pupils, the decision is left to the parents or carers. So, how do you pick the right company for these very special journeys? Here’s what to look out for when doing your research.

DRB-checked drivers

The first thing to find out is whether the drivers who will be ferrying your children to and from school are DRB-checked. This involves a thorough search carried out by a dedicated government service to validate the identify of an individual and to find out if they have a criminal record or anything of concern on file. Reputable taxi firms should ensure that their drivers are checked by this service and will not allow anyone who fails the check, or their own internal audits, to work for them on school runs or any other journeys involving children or vulnerable adults.

Sympathetic drivers

Driving children to school requires more than a basic knowledge of the route; drivers need to be approachable and able to cope with the demands of carrying young passengers who may want to chat and ask lots of questions. Ask what experience the drivers allocated to school runs have with children and looking after them on the road. You may want to accompany your children to school yourself in the taxi orarrange a chaperone, but everyone involved should feel safe, happy and comfortable with the person behind the wheel.

Comfortable cars

Another aspect to consider is the type of vehicle that will be used and its size. Is it big enough for comfort and are you happy with the seat belts, booster seats and other restraints that are available in the back? Will the firm provide the seats or are you expected to? If you are unsure about the legal requirements for your child, check out the government’s website at www.gov.uk/child-car-seats-the-rules.

Disability awareness

Children with physical disabilities or additional needs often require extra facilities, such as specially designed harnesses, belts or supportive seating. Again, a good taxi firm will be able to advise you on what they can provide and how they can help get a child with a disability to and from school. If your child is affected by conditions such as autism that require extra sensitivity around sensory issues or routine, again, you should expect the taxi firm to be able to explain what they can do to support these requirements.

Finally, make sure the taxi drivers know the route, are aware of how long it will take in rush-hour traffic and where they are allowed to drop off and collect the child outside school. You may like to do a couple of trial runs in the holidays to suss out where the taxi is able to stop and how far the journey is from your home or place of work

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Devon Cars London, Head Office

124 Tottenham lane
London
N8 7EL

Tel: 0203 002 9190
Email: info@devoncarslondon.com