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Gas prices drive Chinese cabbies to strike for higher fares

August 4, 2011

In Hangzhou, cab drivers have gone on strike in an effort to get the government to increase fares. Rising gas prices have driven more than 1,500 cabbies to abandon their cars on Monday morning, during rush hour, according to Reuters. The strike continued through Tuesday and into Wednesday, and a few small violent outbursts have erupted, despite the presence of law enforcement and riot control buses.

"We can't make any money, so we have no other solution than to strike," one of the striking cabbies told The Financial Times.

Taxi drivers in Hangzhou claim that they spend nearly 80 percent of their income on fuel and vehicle rental fees. The government has made promises to raise fares in October, but the strikers say that, even though such promises have been made before, the fares have not been raised in eight years, the news source reports.

People who are in this area of China for work or school can call home with international phone cards to let their families know that they are alright and tell them about the events as they unfold.

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