Protests against Uber are taking place from north to south as taxi drivers block roads in Split, Zagreb and Dubrovnik.
As Index reports on the 28th of July, 2017, Croatia’s tourist season is in full swing, the Dalmatian hotspots of Dubrovnik and Split are full of tourists, and taxi drivers have decided to use this highly uncomfortable timing in their continuous fight against Uber. To be shorter – protests are well and truly under way in various locations around the country.
As Dubrovnik based media shared this morning, taxi drivers blocked the traffic close to Duboka Ljuta, along the highway that leads from Dubrovnik to the airport and further down to the Montenegrin border. As we ourselves reported, a high dose of patience for those using the roads, especially those heading towards the airport (Cilipi) is needed.
“We did not block anything!” state taxi drivers who have spoken to journalists.
As Index learned, taxi drivers from Split, Podstrana, Solin, Kastela and Trogir have occupied a carpark at Resnik since early this morning.
“There are 250 or 300 of us. We haven’t blocked anything, but there’s no way of getting into the carpark. We gathered in the very early hours of this morning, at about 04:30, the police were there with us and additional bus lines were introduced. We aren’t angry at the Ministry of Transport, obviously the problem lies somewhere else. With this gathering, we wanted to encourage people to start doing their job!” Topić told Index.
Split’s Airport Director Lukša Novak said that the airport carpark isn’t blocked and that traffic is normal.
“Taxi drivers are protesting but they didn’t block the carpark. They arrived this morning at about 07:00 and occupied 30 spaces. The carpark is full, but that’s normal, it’s peak season. When this happens, we divert the passengers to a nearby carpark about a hundred meters away” stated Novak in conversation with Index.
More uncomfortably still, Split Airport is expecting an exceptionally busy weekend with the most traffic in a year. About 30,000 passengers would need to pass through Resnik on Saturday, and about 35,000 on Sunday.
When confronted with the situation going on in Dubrovnik, DuList was told “Dubrovnik taxi drivers aren’t organising any protest, but Uber and the dysfunctionality of the legal system of the Republic of Croatia! We’ve been fighting for two years, and all of them are deaf, they don’t care about us, and we’re filling up the budgets from which they receive their salaries! We have to fight, there’s no other way! After the last spontaneous gathering in Zagreb two months ago, we asked for the law to be the same for everyone. As this did not happen, I personally expressed my dissatisfaction and I stopped my vehicle. I don’t know what other people did. They were probably driving people to the airport, saw me and joined.”
As we have reported, Dubrovnik taxi drivers are currently blocking the highway in the direction from the airport towards the city, as well as in the reverse direction at alternate locations, protesting against Uber, and the result is absolute chaos.
Dubrovnik’s Mayor Mato Frankovic has issued a statement warning the taxi drivers to end their protest for the good of the city and its guests.
Excerpts taken and translated from Index.hr