Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Oh, Canada

A ridiculous update on a ridiculous lawsuit: In August I wrote about a carpooling startup called PickupPal. The idea is that people can gather on the site to find others traveling to the same places, and carpool there to save gas.

Great idea, right? Wrong. The bus companies freaked and sued under an Ontario law that limits carpoolers to traveling only from home to work and back, riding with the same driver every day and paying only by the week, among other restrictions. This is despite the fact that the government has spent “billions” in carpooling lanes.

Anyway, the court case was decided and PickupPal lost. They were fined CA$11,000 and forced to keep that despicable carpooling activity within the strict limits of the law:

Well we got our ruling from the Ontario Highway Transportation Board (OHTB) and they say that it is illegal to Rideshare in Ontario, (here is the official decision [PDF 0.98 MB]).

The only way you can ride with someone is if you meet ALL of the following extremely impractical set of specific criteria:

* You must travel from home to work only – (Not Home to School, or Home to the Hospital or the Airport)
* You cannot cross municipal boundaries – (Live outside the city and drive in – sorry you cannot share the ride with your neighbour)
* You must ride with the same driver each day – (Want to mix it up go with one person one day and another person another day – no sorry cannot do that – must be same person each day)
* You must pay the driver no more frequently than weekly – (Neighbour drives you to work better not pay her right away just in case she drives you later on in the week)

via TechCrunch


Rebelfish said...

Holy smokes! And I thought only the U.S. did preposterous things like that. I'll send this to Streetsblog.

Fat Knowledge said...

Yeah, that was my reaction too. Not sure if I should be happy that no longer is America the only place where crazy stuff like this happens, or if I should be sad that it has spread to Canada.

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