SIX taxis and private hire vehicles have been ordered off the road in York during a series of safety checks.

Officers from City of York Council, North Yorkshire Police and the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) carried out checks on 25 hackney carriages and private hire vehicles during the checks in November and December.

Vehicles licensed by York, Leeds, Bradford and Wakefield were given full mechanical examinations for defects by the DVSA at the council’s MOT test centre at Hazel Court or at the roadside to check they were driving were safe to carry customers.

Checks were also made to ensure that the drivers were properly licensed and insured, said a council spokeswoman.

"As a result, six vehicles were ordered off the road by the DVSA and had their licences suspended," she said.

"Four of the six suspended taxis and private hire vehicles were licensed by City of York, three of which were suspended for a period of 4 - 8 days, with one vehicle still off the road."

She said the vehicles were suspended due to the following faults:

• defective tyres

• tyres fitted to the front axle of different sizes and no operable spare

• defective or inoperative headlights

• an illuminated engine warning light

• defective coil springs.

"A further twelve drivers were advised to repair minor vehicle defects and several others were also warned by enforcement officers about breaches of licensing conditions," she added.

Cllr Peter Dew, executive member for transport and planning, said the operation showed the authority's commitment to ensuring only safe and correctly licensed taxis and private hire vehicles operated within the city.

"We will continue to work closely and share resources with North Yorkshire Police and the DVSA, to tackle this issue directly and make York safer for those travelling by taxi," he said.

The spokeswoman added that anyone with concerns about the conduct of drivers or the condition of their vehicles should email so the council’s public protection team can investigate.