Judge Moves to Suspend Uber Statewide

UPDATE at 5:30 p.m., Wednesday, July 15, 2015: Uber says it will appeal. 

A state administrative law judge today moved to suspend UberX throughout California and fine the company that runs it $7.3 million, the California Public Utilities Commission announced this afternoon.

The judge said that UberX's operating firm has failed to abide by reporting requirements tied to its state approval as a transportation network company, according to the PUC.

The judge said UberX's operating company, Rasier-CA, failed to:

—provide the number and percentage of customers who requested disabled-accessible vehicles, and failed to demonstrate how many times UberX was able to fulfill those requests.

—provide the number of rides requested and given in each zip code served.

—account for the cause of each accident involving an UberX driver.

The company has 30 days to come up with the information or its California operating license will be suspended, the PUC said in a statement:

If Rasier-CA or the CPUC’s Safety and Enforcement Division file an appeal of the decision, and/or a Commissioner requests review, the administrative Law Judge will review the appeal and either make changes to the decision or keep it the same. The decision would then come before the Commissioners to consider at a Voting Meeting.

The state approved ride-share services in 2013, but with clear caveats about reporting this kind of information.

Taxi companies in Los Angeles are required to deploy a number of disabled-capable vehicles, and they must proactively provide rides in traditionally under-served communities such as South L.A.

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We reached out to Uber for its reaction but did not hear back immediately.

UPDATE at 5:30 p.m., Wednesday, July 15, 2015: Uber says it will appeal. Here's a statement sent to us by company spokeswoman Eva Behrend:

This ruling — and the associated fine — are deeply disappointing. We will appeal the decision as Uber has already provided substantial amounts of data to the California Public Utilities Commission, information we have provided elsewhere with no complaints. Going further risks compromising the privacy of individual riders as well as driver-partners. These CPUC requests are also beyond the authority of the Commission and will not improve public safety. It is important to note there will be no suspension while the appeal is heard.

Uber says it has provided the necessary information to the state, but it also believes that the requirements are overly broad. The company says it's willing to work with California officials to get them the necessary data.

Send feedback and tips to the author. Follow Dennis Romero on Twitter at @dennisjromero. Follow L.A. Weekly News on Twitter at @laweeklynews.

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