Ridesharing services Uber and Lyft have been ordered to shut down their operations in Pittsburgh until they receive proper licensing.
Judges Mary D. Long and Jeffrey A. Watson issued cease-and-desist orders to the two startups after the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission filed a petition against Uber and Lyft on June 16.
"We are disappointed by the PUC’s actions as Uber has been working in good faith with state officials for months to create modern regulations that will give consumers access to the safest rides on the road," Uber said in a statement. "Pennsylvania regulators should be standing up for innovation, consumer choice and job growth—not the status quo." Uber said on its Twitter account said it will continue operating in the city.
In a statement, Lyft said it remains "committed to finding a path forward for ridesharing in Pennsylvania and are working with elected officials to ensure that consumers continue to have access to peer-to-peer transportation." The company is still evaluating its options, but said it will remain operating.
Before Pittsburgh halted Uber's and Lyft's operations, the city's police systematically targeted ridesharing drivers with sting operations. Undercover officers would summon rides on both platforms, issuing fines to drivers for transporting passengers for hire without the proper license.
But not all officials in Pittsburgh are against the e-hailing apps. Mayor William Peduto reiterated his support for these companies in a tweet, calling for change with the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission.
[Image: Flickr user Kenny Louie]