NEW YORK (FOX 5 NEWS) - Taxi partitions have been around for over 20 years but now you may to start to see more taxis without them. The Plexiglas partitions were installed in 1994 to protect cabbies from being held up. But starting next month all taxi drivers in New York City will have the option to remove it and install an in-vehicle camera system instead.
The Taxi and Limousine Commission says there are currently 318 yellow cabs and 3,651 green Boro taxis on the road without a partition. The TLC adds: "passengers and drivers like each option for different reasons, and so we want to make both available."
Michael O'Loughlin, director of Cab Riders United, says partitions should be eliminated except in Taxis of the Future because they can seriously injure passengers in an accident. He says that emergency rooms call it "partition face."
Meanwhile at least one TLC board member believes getting rid of the partition would help taxi drivers better compete with smartphone app services like Uber.
The TLC said it is not trying to eliminate or phase out the partition in anyway. It's just giving the drivers options.