Buenos Aires taxi drivers are demonstrating against Uber on its first day of operation, following similar protests in Chile, Brazil and many other countries around the world. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
Taxi cabs block roads on opening day for Uber in Argentina. While the drivers stand in protest, Uber claims to already have thousands of its own vehicles on the streets of Buenos Aires. The cab drivers say Uber puts their futures at risk. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) UNKNOWN ARGENTINE TAXI DRIVER SAYING: "The truth is that I'm worried. I have been a taxi driver for 18 years, because I lost my job in the 90s. I don't want to lose again." Transportation officials say Uber vehicles have not been authorized to operate in the city and risk being towed. Uber says otherwise. In Chile similar concerns where cab drivers say Uber and other car services have slashed earnings. Uber users like Karen Salazar say taxi drivers only have themselves to blame. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) KAREN SALAZAR, 25-YEAR-OLD CHILEAN UBER USER, SAYING: "You can't trust the taxis. You take it and wonder, 'Is that really what I'm supposed to pay or not?' On the other hand it's not like that with Uber. There's always a rate. If you go to a place over and over, you are charged the same. So you trust it." Earlier this month those protests went into the night in Chile. Likewise in Brazil, cab drivers are up in arms -- forcing passengers to get where they are going on their own -- saying Uber has cost them more than half of their business. They staged protests at airports A scene being played out in countries around the globe amid fears that for cab drivers, it could be the final act