'Don't drink in our taxis'
WITH the Christmas work party season just around the corner Gladstone taxi drivers are asking revellers to use their common sense and not drink alcohol in taxis.
Smoking was banned from taxis several years ago and people have accepted that ruling. Local taxi drivers would expect people to adopt the same attitude towards alcohol consumption in taxis.
Many people start their celebrations at home and when they call a cab they jump in with a drink and finish it off while driving to their destination.
Gladstone taxis manager Alan Rowe said he would like to create awareness among passengers that it is not good etiquette to bring your drink with you.
“There is a rule that no food or drink is allowed in taxis and during the busy Christmas party season drivers don’t have time to clean taxis between fares when drinks are spilled,” Mr Rowe said.
By not bringing alcohol into taxis it also takes the sting out of any controversy when drivers have to ask passengers to leave their drinks behind. Local nightclub Bojangles has a policy that they don’t let anyone in who gets out of a taxi with alcohol.
“It is a major problem for us and basically people are breaking the law when they do this,” manager Michael Matz said.
“We had a warning period but now there is no tolerance for people bringing alcohol in taxis,” he said.
District Crime Prevention co-ordinator Senior Constable Julie Meinberg said people could be fined $100 for consuming alcohol in a non-designated public place.
“Standing in the roadway waiting for a taxi or exiting a taxi in the CBD are public places where you can be fined,” Snr Const. Meinberg said.
“Police wish to remind people to drink responsibly and respect the taxi drivers and their workplaces.
“Most locals are great but if a taxi driver says no to alcohol in their cab it is a breach and a $200 fine can be issued,” Mr Rowe said.
All taxis have a sticker stating that smoking and/or the consumption of food and drink is prohibited and an infringement penalty of $200 can be enforced.
“So, just remember when out celebrating, finish your drink before you get in the taxi and respect our drivers who are just ordinary people doing their jobs.”