Uber still operating in Columbia - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina

Uber still operating in Columbia

(Source: Uber) (Source: Uber)

A hearing date has been set to determine whether Uber can legally operate in South Carolina or not.

The rideshare company was told last week to 'cease and desist' its operations in South Carolina.

But WIS has learned that Uber is still operating in Columbia and not one driver has been ticketed.

The Uber drivers WIS' Chad Mills talked to say Uber itself has promised them that it'll pay any tickets or fines they receive.

But they might not be ticketed or fined in the first place.

For Nicholas Matt, driving for Uber is a fun way to meet people.

"The group of people that get in the car vary every night," Uber driver Nichloas Matt said. "I have my own business as well, but this is kind of my main source of income for the moment."

Uber, the company that connects riders with drivers, has been ordered to cease and desist in South Carolina until the Public Service Commission approves the company's application.

But that's not stopping Matt and other drivers in Columbia.

"Obviously, we want to do what's right, you know, by the state and the legality of it all, but we are operating 100%," Matt said.

Matt and others are seeing little resistance.

So far, Columbia Police Department hasn't ticketed any drivers.

The Office of Regulatory Staff, which regulates transportation companies across South Carolina, hasn't written any tickets either.

"We have not written a fine up until now. I hate to say we're not going to issue a fine, but that's not our intention," said Dukes Scott with the Office of Regulatory Staff.

Executive Director Dukes Scott says it's not it's not his office's intention, since Uber is cooperating with the licensing process.

"I don't know of any purpose that would be served by taking a couple hundred bucks out of their pockets," Dukes said.

But Uber drivers like Matt have run into other problems.

He and other drivers say they're being stalked and followed by angry taxi drivers.

"They'll find ways to get behind you. They'll follow you even when they park. They'll stop and wait in the parking lot until you get back in the car and decide to, you know, go on a run. He has run red lights in an effort to get behind us and rolled stop signs,” Matt said.

Uber driver Richard Shannon has been tailed by a taxi driver too.

He says it's dangerous, but not enough to stop him.

"I have kids, and I have a family to support, so I'm going to keep doing what I do to support my family" Shannon said.

WIS' Chad Mills spoke to the owner of Party Cab and he does admit to following Uber drivers.

He says it's his duty as an American to report a crime when he sees it.

He compared Uber to crack cocaine and said even though some people might like it, it's still illegal.

He says he doesn't break traffic laws following Uber drivers to report them.

And he says if state and agencies don't start writing Uber drivers tickets, then cab companies like his will start ignoring laws and regulations too.

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