Prom season is almost here and parents and carers across the city are reminded to make vital checks before hiring vehicles for Prom night.

City of Wolverhampton Council’s licensing team is working with schools and other councils across the region to alert families to potential risks, warning that not all companies that advertise the services of stretched limousines and other luxury or performance vehicles are licensed.

The following advice is being issued so people can be sure that the vehicle being booked is safe and legal. The type of checks needed depend on how many passenger seats the vehicle has:

  • Companies hiring out a vehicle and driver with fewer than nine seats may require a private hire vehicle operators licence from City of Wolverhampton Council. Ask the company if they are licensed and which local authority licenses them, then contact that authority to confirm.
  • Parents/carers can also check to see if they are licensed online at Taxi licences by clicking ‘Online Licence Registers’ and then selecting ‘Operators’.
  • Companies hiring out a limousine with a driver with nine passenger seats or more must have a public service vehicle (PSV) operator licence, issued by a Traffic Commissioner. You can check online at Vehicle operators.
  • If the company doesn’t have a licence, it could be operating illegally. You can report this at Taxi complaints or by calling 01902 55 TAXI (01902 558294.)

Councillor Bhupinder Gakhal, cabinet member for Resident Services, said: “We are aware that there may be unscrupulous companies looking to take advantage at this time of year. Hiring a vehicle and driver that hasn’t been properly vetted and licensed could put your child and their friends at risk. 

“The driver may not have had a criminal record check or the vehicle may not be roadworthy. In addition, unlicensed vehicles and drivers won’t be insured. 

“Prom nights are lovely events for our young people to get together and celebrate what they have achieved. Undertaking these important checks on the company you are thinking of hiring from ensures that sure everyone has fun and stays safe on Prom night.”