That’s fare: Beijing puts taxi meters in ambulances

Source:Global Times Published: 2016-4-24 20:08:01

Beijing is installing taxi-like meters in 580 ambulances in a move to curb customer complaints of overcharging.

The municipality is the first in China to implement such a policy citywide, media reported.

Beginning May 1, select fleets of 120 and 999 emergency response vehicles will operate with meters to help drivers and patients clearly tally up ambulance fees, the Beijing Morning Post reported on Saturday.

The base fare is 50 yuan ($ 7.69) within three kilometers and 7 yuan for each additional  kilometer, according to the new tariffs set by the Beijing Municipal Administration of Quality and Technology Supervision.

The policy replaces the non-transparent system of drivers calculating charges right after being dispatched from the hospital, where fees could easily reach into the hundreds of yuan and result in disputes between drivers and customers, The Beijing News reported.

A similar policy was piloted in 2009 at Shanghai's Songjiang District Medical Emergency Center, media reported. 

The new fares saw their fair share of debate online.

"[Taxi hailing app] Didi Taxi should also launch an ambulance dispatch service,"  "burry51" from Tianjin said.

"Finally there is a standard. Compared with what seemed like a random charging system, this is progress," "Zhengzhou Huahui Zulin Zubai" said.

"I hope they won't take detours on purpose," "Nanjing Chengli Xia Yuanxiao," a Sina Weibo user said.

Posted in: Odd News

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