Vrygrond residents rally behind taxi drivers

Operators say more than a dozen vehicles have been impounded by traffic officials in recent weeks.

Vrygrond taxi drivers face off with police on 16 September 2014, with many of them upset that their taxis have been impounded. Picture: Siyabonga Sesant/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - Some Vrygrond residents say traffic authorities are being too hard on taxi drivers operating without permits in the area.

Operators say more than a dozen vehicles have been impounded by traffic officials in recent weeks.

Tensions ran high on Tuesday when protesting drivers staged a violent protest.

They were hurling rocks and other objects at officers who respond by firing rubber bullets and tear gas.

The residents have also rallied behind taxi drivers regarding the impounding of vehicles and sharp increase in traffic fines.

Drivers who claim to earn around R400 a week say they can't afford the steep hikes. Traffic fines in the Western Cape rocketed by up to 300 percent in August.

Meanwhile, pupils at several schools in the area have also called for the demonstrations to end.

"I'm in grade 12 and I'm supposed to be writing English. If you fail English, then you have failed the whole year. Now because of these protests we can't go to school."