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The taxi industry: working conditions and health of drivers, a literature review

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The taxi industry plays an important role in urban transportation systems, both in economic and mobility terms. In the case of the former, it provides employment for a large number of people and circulates significant amounts of money. In the case of the latter, it is a flexible means of transportation capable of arriving at any destination. Although the way the taxi industry is organised varies across countries and even within countries, some factors are shared at varying latitudes of the globe. Working conditions, habits, health, and exposure to road crashes have been a subject of interest for researchers from various disciplines, including medicine, psychology, and economics. However, much of this research focuses on a part of the problem and is not mutually referential. A review of the literature may be useful not only to researchers of diverse disciplines but also to industry representatives and those public officials responsible for transportation, road safety and health policy. This article provides a comprehensive review of the working conditions of taxi drivers, their relationship to road risk exposure and their consequences on the health of workers. It also includes information on coping strategies and protective behaviors. The review is based on a Scopus database search. The search covered the period from 1990 to 2015. This initial search was complemented with other database searches, which yielded some additional studies. Our goal was to summarise existing knowledge, identify possible lines of research and suggest some practical recommendations. It would be important (a) to reduce the workload, establish adequate time for breaks, and provide access to healthcare, (b) to implement actions to promote and maintain healthy habits, (c) to diagnose, detect and treat indicators of occupational fatigue and stress, and (d) to develop programs that make it possible to evaluate work concerns and broaden coping strategies to foster positive changes.
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Keywords: Taxi industry; health; review; taxi drivers; working conditions

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas (CONICET), Universidad Nacional de Mar del Plata, Mar del Plata, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Publication date: May 4, 2018

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