Uber was today refused a licence to operate in London after transport chiefs accused the app firm of risking passenger safety.

Transport for London said the company was 'not fit and proper' to hold a minicab licence. Uber was expected to appeal the decision.

TfL claimed at least 14,000 trips involved uninsured drivers who were able to exploit vulnerabilities in Uber's software.

While we recognise Uber has made improvements, it is unacceptable that Uber has allowed passengers to get into minicabs with drivers who are potentially unlicensed and uninsured.

Helen Chapman, Transport for London

Uber began operating in London in 2012. The company, has an estimated 50,000 drivers.> Uber was granted a temporary two-month licence in September following an earlier decision by TfL to refuse an application to operate.> The explosion in minicab licences has been blamed by TfL for significantly increasing congestion.

Uber app showing cars in central London

TfL's decision not to renew Uber's licence in London is extraordinary and wrong, and we will appeal. We have fundamentally changed our business over the last two years and are setting the standard on safety. TfL found us to be a fit and proper operator just two months ago, and we continue to go above and beyond.

Jamie Heywood, Uber

Jamie Heywood, Uber

I support the decision by TfL’s licensing officials today in relation to Uber and completely understand why the decision was taken. Keeping Londoners safe is my absolute number-one priority, and TfL have identified a pattern of failure by Uber that has directly put passengers’ safety at risk.

Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London