Vax-to-ride? Docs say taxis should require shots for drivers, riders

Biden’s vaccine mandate is ‘blatantly illegal’: Attorney

Liberty Justice Center Managing Attorney Brian Kelsey says state rights’ and exemptions may delay Biden’s worker vaccine mandate.

Should you need a jab to hail a cab?

With shared vehicles basically rolling petri dishes, epidemiologists say it would be "wise" to require drivers and passengers of taxis and other hailed rides to be vaccinated.

"I certainly would be in favor of that," Dr. Barun Mathema, assistant professor of epidemiology at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health, told The Post.

FORD EVALUATES BIDEN'S VACCINE MANDATE

The risk of coronavirus transmission during a car ride can be "uncomfortably high," depending on factors like the length of the ride, mask-wearing, how quickly the virus is spreading in the community, and, crucially, whether the windows are up or down.

As it gets colder, Mathema said, riders "are just not going to want" to keep the windows open.

He called for "creative solutions" to promote vaccinated rides, short of a mandate, perhaps including discounts for vaccinated riders, driver incentives, or some kind of opt-in system for the jabbed.

Los Angeles, CA. OCTOBER 18, 2020: A departing passenger speaks with a taxi driver at LAX-it located east of Los Angeles International Airport in Los Angeles, CA Saturday afternoon October 18, 2020. (Francine Orr/ Los Angeles Times via Getty Images) (Francine Orr/ Los Angeles Times via Getty Images / Getty Images)

"There has to be coordination," he said. "And this has to come from the government," or one ridesharing company could lose business getting ahead of others with a mandate.

BIDEN ADMINISTRATION REFUSES TO RULE OUT VACCINE MANDATES FOR DOMESTIC FLIGHTS

The city Taxi & Limousine Commission told The Post that while riders and drivers must mask up, neither are subject to vaccine requirements like some city and state workers. It refused to comment on a mandate.

An Uber rep said the company isn’t requiring jabs right now, but it is promoting vaccines to riders and drivers.

Lyft co-founder John Zimmer said in a CNBC interview the company considered a vaccine mandate, but for now, will stick with masks.

Both taxi-killing Silicon Valley darlings require passengers to agree to use their apps to mask up and keep the windows down before each ride.

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But Andrew Burgie, an assistant research scientist at NYU’s School of Global Public Health, said those measures were only "the best thing you could do until something better comes along" — namely, the vaccine. Now that the shots are easy and free to get, he said it doesn’t make sense to rely on what he called "secondary controls."

"It would make sense to have a mandate," he said. "If everybody were inoculated, then we wouldn’t necessarily need to worry about masks."

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