Well this is some interesting news in the ongoing war-on-taxis/war-on-rideshares: GeekWire reports this afternoon that the Western Washington Taxi Cab Operators Association is suing Uber Technologies. From GeekWire:
The lawsuit, filed in King County Superior Court, claims that Uber’s service has violated city, county and state laws, and “engages in an unlawful and deceptive business practice which harms the economic interests of taxicab drivers.”
The Seattle City Council voted earlier this month to regulate companies like Lyft, Sidecar and UberX, which is Uber’s low-cost offering that allows everyday drivers to shuttle people around town. However, this lawsuit appears directed at Uber’s luxury service, which uses professional drivers that partner with Uber.
The complaint notes that the Operators Association’s members, which are made up of taxi drivers from the Seattle region, are forced to follow requirements enacted by the City of Seattle and King County while Uber’s drivers do not abide by the same laws.
Read the rest here. KOMO tweeted out a PDF of the lawsuit right here, if you'd like to read the whole thing. Uber Seattle's general manager Brooke Steger hasn't yet returned a call for comment, nor has the taxi association's spokeswoman Dawn Gearheart.
A similar case was filed in Chicago last month.
UPDATE 5:30 p.m.: Brooke Steger offers this comment on the lawsuit: "Uber remains focused on connecting people with the safest and most reliable transportation options in Seattle and protecting the thousands of small business jobs created by our technology platform. It is unfortunate that the taxi industry is not similarly focused on what really matters: safety of riders and opportunity for drivers."