Archive for the Road Rage Category

Hit and Run Or Assault

Posted in Close Calls, Law Enforcement, Road Rage with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 29, 2011 by HackingVegas

As my twitter followers know, I had another incident at work last week. This one pushed me over the edge and got me to try to get local media involved in order to better protect myself and fellow hacks in Las Vegas. It started with a typical fare pick up at a resort where I was taking the second half of a large group to the outlets.  As I was pulling down the driveway I had a van next to me. For no apparent reason he started to come into my lane. This is common so I tapped my horn a few times hoping he would correct himself. Instead he continued to try to run me up the curb into the planter. I laid on my horn as I pulled up to the stop light.

The driver of the van opened his door, jumped out and started to run to my driver’s door. I thought I was ok because our cabs have auto lock doors when you put them in gear. Little did I know mine were not working that day.  He grabbed my door handle and flung it open.  He was yelling at me asking why I didn’t stop at the stop sign behind us. I couldn’t help but laugh and said,

“I’m sorry my stop wasn’t good enough for you but what gives you the right to come at me the way you did?”

Well, I guess that wasn’t the best way to handle it because he responded by saying, “Fine! I’ll come at you like this”, as he took a swing at me. I leaned away from it and he missed. I was able to grab my door and slam it shut before he had time for another swing. I locked the door, hit the panic button on my camera and radioed into dispatch what was happening.

By now my fare is freaking out and screaming bloody murder. My dispatcher didn’t make things any better. When I called in, the dispatcher couldn’t get my cab number right if her life depended on it.  It took 5 times for her to finally repeat the proper number. I chalked it up to the crappy radios the company put in not too long ago. Then I told her what just happened and gave her a description of  the man, his van & his license plate number. Once again I repeated myself 5 times before she repeated the proper plate number.  At this point I’m getting pissed. I’ve given this person who is supposed to be there to take information from me a lot of things I couldn’t write and I was sure that none of it was taken properly.

After he drives off I pulled my cab to a side road and parked.  My Fare was scared but I was trying to explain that I needed a statement from them.  But just as one of them was willing to do it my dispatcher said that the police ran the plate and it came back as invalid. She repeated the number back to me and to no surprise  she had written it down wrong. I remembered all but one letter and knew it was one of 2 options. I gave her the right plate number with both possibilities and waited to hear back. She then came back and said that both Metro and the Taxi Authority (TA) were not going to respond but that the TA wanted me to go to their office when I was done so they can do the paperwork needed. My fare had enough and hailed a cab out of there.

I couldn’t believe that this lady caused two different police agencies to not respond. Twenty minutes later, a Metro Traffic Officer pulled up and I found out why they didn’t come. He was sent for a Hit and Run car vs car crash. Nothing in the call said there was an assault. He asked if TA was going to handle it and after hearing they were, he pulled off. When my Supervisor found out that the call said nothing about the assault he called the TA and filled them in on what was really happening. They still didn’t want to send anyone out and wanted me to just come to the office still.

So off I went…

Is That All You Care About (WTF 2)

Posted in Driving Basics, Law Enforcement, Road Rage with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 13, 2011 by HackingVegas

After being told to go back to the yard in “Who Needs a Door Handle” I did just that. I was only about 2 miles away so I was there In just a few moments. When I got there I didn’t see the road supervisor I was told to meet so I went into the shift coordinators office to ask what I needed to do. Per usual they didn’t know a damn thing about what was going on. So after I filled them in on what happened they asked why I was there. I told them I was told to come here and deal with it here. I asked if I need to feel out any paperwork and once again I got the response of, “I don’t know”. I found an incident report on the wall of information racks and took things into my own hands and filled it out.

After I was done the road supervisor finally showed. He asked for my license and the registration for the car. I gave him he stuff and waited while he filled out paperwork. I got a shift coordinator to download the camera while he finished. When the road supervisor was done he asked if I had any questions and was trying to wrap it up. I asked when the cops were coming and if he wanted my report of what happened. He really wasn’t interested in what happened. He said, “well I have what I need and the video will help us get them to pay for it.”. I asked about when the Taxi Authority is coming and if Metro was on the way. He said that the Taxi Authority should be on the way and if I want to file a report with Metro I need to call them. He said they were called and told about the car so they can use that in the clam for repairs.

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At this point I’m getting mad. I asked dispatch to call for metro and the Taxi Authority so I can file a report about the assault and it seems the only thing they care about is the car. This was made clear when I called Metro and asked if they could come take a report on the assault part of this. The dispatcher asked if this was part of the vandalism call at the hotel. I said yes and asked what was reported. She said they only gave them the make and model of the SUV and was reporting a vandalism. I asked if they knew about the assault and she said no. I then told her what happened and asked if they could come make a report. She said to stay at the yard and got the address. She informed me that someone is on the way. So I hung up, text the wife to let her know what’s going on and waited.

I’m a bit upset at this point and can’t believe the company could really careless about what happened to me and only was worried about the car. Maybe it’s just me but when I was in charge of field employees I made sure if something happened to them at work we did everything we could to help them. I mean they were my employees and were doing their job that made the company money. Yet I’m now all alone waiting with no support and no one to ask for help. So there I sit waiting…..

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Who Needs a Door Handle (WTF 1)

Posted in Close Calls, Driving Basics, Road Rage with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 11, 2011 by HackingVegas

Yesterday was a bad day all around. But no bad day is complete without a cherry to top it off. This is going to be part one of a look inside the inner workings of the taxi industry during an “emergency”.

I pull up to the hotel to let my fare out and when I get back in the car to leave a black SUV pulls around me and stops. I give him a minute to figure out what he’s doing (car had out if state plates). The driver gets out and started to unload a ton of bags. I tap my horn to get his attention and point to the sign saying it’s a “thru lane”. He just kept unloading. I then lean out the window and tell him, “hey, this is a thru lane you need to pull forward to the side to unload your car so everyone can get thru”. Well that didn’t go over well. He grabbed the next bag and slammed it against my cab. Thankfully staff at the hotel saw what was happening and went up to the guy and asked him to not unload there and told him he can pull up to the side to unload.

He got back into his SUV and pulled down the driveway. I put my car in drive and off I went. As we get to the edge of the property he stops and puts his SUV in park. Next thing I know his two doors fly open and two guys jump out and run at me. I’ve seen this before so I know what’s coming. I hit the panic button on my camera and I start to roll my window up as the driver reaches my door. Before I can get the window all the way up he takes a swing at me. Thank god he missed and my window is now up. They start yelling and I yell back, “WHAT THE FUCK IS YOUR DEAL? why don’t you get back in your car and get the fuck out of here”.

Well as I’m sure you’ve guessed, leaving was not what was on his mind. He wanted blood and wasn’t going to leave till he got it. He grabbed my door handle and in one swift tug ripped it right off the door. His buddy then got a freaked out look on his face and pulled the driver back to the SUV. They sped off and I switched my radio to “emergency” (as per company policy) and called it in. I started to follow him to get the plate number and make and model of the SUV.

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Once I got that he noticed I was behind him and started to run every red light for as far as I could see. I turned back around and started back to the hotel to wait for the Taxi Authority. Before I could get there my dispatch came back on the radio and said I needed to go back to the cab yard. I asked about the Taxi Authority and was told that per the road supervisor I needed to go back to the yard and everything would be handled there.

This isn’t out of the ordinary. The Taxi Authority does this a lot. I have yet to find out why but it happens so I started back like I was told.
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This mini-drama will continue for the next few posts. You can track them in order by the (WTF) plus a number at the end of each tittle.

Lines, Lines, and More Lines

Posted in Driving Basics, Random Info, Road Rage with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 12, 2011 by HackingVegas

This week has been a tough one. We have the National Broadcasting Association in town which brings a lot of people out here. For some reason once again the Taxi Authority approved way too many extra cabs for this event. The cab stands are long as hell and a lot of drivers are making between $100-$150 less then they do on a normal non-convention day. I have gone up and down the strip a few times this week and all I see are line, lines, and more lines. Its for this reason why I’m glad I work the north end of town a lot.

It’s now Tuesday and I stumble into work to this.

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WTF

I guess the largest company in town can’t afford a computer system that doesn’t crash all the time or freeze. They are hand writing our trip sheets which is taking forever. I had enough time to write this and could’ve re-written it about 5 times. Total wait time: 30 mins. Normal wait time 30 seconds to 3 mins.

HAPPY TUESDAY

Praying To The East

Posted in Driving Basics, Foreigners, Random Info, Road Rage with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 6, 2011 by HackingVegas

There is a lot of things you can say about a hack, but in Vegas you can’t say the industry isn’t diverse. When you talk about a hack in most cities 9 out of 10 times people will think about an Arab man wearing a turban.  This is such a common thought that even Hollywood uses this as comedic relief in their movies.

Here in Vegas we have about every region of the world represented and therefor we have all types of religion as well.  One nice thing is that with this diversity most everyone gets along. Most ethnicities hang out in the same groups but are always willing to bring anyone into their circles.  I love this and wish this was the case around the world.

Even though this is the way of most, we do have a few bad apples.  The most common issue we have is against anyone who prays to the east or does any type of religious ritual while working. For some reason people still have issues about things they don’t know much about other than what they’ve seen on FOX News, or “facts” they’ve gotten from a friend. During the day if you drive around any taxi hang out, you will see people on their mats praying. Most of them try to find dark corners to do this but we do have a few who are proud and don’t hide from the public.

Over the years I have seen many of these men get yelled at and have things thrown at them. I hate this and hope the people doing this to these people trying to mind their own business get whats coming to them.  Many of these drivers who pray during work have set up their houses as a safe prayer zones and have even got a restaurant to open their doors to them in the early morning to give shelter.  I love this but at the same time wish they didn’t have to go find places for them to go. They should be able to stop anywhere and do whatever they need to do to fulfill their religions practices.

To wrap this up I’m just asking for people to stop hating and educate themselves of what they are uncomfortable with. If  8,000 hacks can do it I think anyone out there can.  If you don’t feel that you can talk to people to educate yourself then I would like to introduce the world to the Internet.  It’s amazing what you can learn. 

Thank A Cop

Posted in Driving Basics, Law Enforcement, Road Rage, Robberies with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 14, 2011 by HackingVegas

Today is a good day for justice. As you have read in earlier posts a fellow cab driver was killed about a week ago. Las Vegas Metro Police have been very hush-hush on all the details of what really happened. Even though this is frustrating for the community it’s done for good reason and last nights report shows us why.
I pushed my post today to share this with you in honor of a fallen coworker. Please read and or watch the links below and thank a cop today for all the hard work they do despite the bad rap we all (including myself) give them.

Cops are still looking for this woman

News clip

I’ve posted more on my Facebook

Race Weekend

Posted in Driving Basics, Law Enforcement, Random Info, Road Rage with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 9, 2011 by HackingVegas


Well into race weekend here in Vegas and I started my week on the big race day. They reported about 150,000 people in town for this race, but you wouldn’t know it from the way the cab lines looked.

The Taxi Authority puts out more cabs when we have big events in town. Over the last few years they’ve put less cabs out for these events due to already having too many permanent cabs on the road. But with the last few events, a couple of the bigger companies have fought for more “convention cabs”. Last year’s race I think each company put out 8 extra cabs. This year they are putting out a total of 15. That’s over one hundred cabs put out in a town that already has too many cabs on the road.

I was looking forward to this weekend. I took a 7am-7pm shift instead of my normal early shift so I would be on the road during the main rushes on both ends of the race. I get to work and the taxi lines are over flowing onto the streets. I’m not too worried yet, it’s early. I got a few rides but noticed the lines are still there. They are about half as long but still there. It’s now coming up to the 10 o’clock hour and on Sunday’s that’s primetime. Everyone is checking out and we have a good two hours of non-stop rides. Soon after, the airport picks up with incoming flights and the day never really stops. If you wait for a ride anywhere you normally only wait about 5 mins but we are waiting upwards of 30 mins.

I don’t let this get to me. I find a few good fares and despite not getting a single ride to the track I know I can always get a few back from the race. As the end of the race comes near I start my way toward the track. About 15 mins from the track I hear the race ended and people are lining up. I’m thinking this is going to be good. I’m here toward the beginning of the end so I should get at least 2 trips from here and if I push it, I may get more.

I pull up to gate 5, which is where we have to pick up from, and I’m only 30 cabs back. We are stopped by Highway Patrol while they let busses out. One after another comes out then they stop them. Now they are letting the busses facing us start to turn left on to the base. Good, now they should let us turn left into the racetrack. About 10 mins go by and the track is yelling for cabs saying they don’t have any. Meanwhile the line of 30 cabs has now grown to about 200 and we are still waiting. NHP (Nevada Highway Patrol) then stops the busses turning on the base and start to let the other busses go again. We are now going on about 25 mins and I see the NHP officers laughing at us. Finally about 30 minutes after I show up and the fans have been waiting for well over 30 minutes, we finally get let in. The group I got was pissed and after hearing what happened they gave the NHP Officer directing traffic a ration of shit on the way out. This small event messed up the flow for the rest of the evening and cost me about $80.

Now that I’ve got that off my chest, I’ll take a deep breath and move on. Ok almost (my wife always says I can’t leave well enough alone) why did NHP take over traffic control from Metro Police? Metro has a whole division that does nothing but traffic control. They do all the big events in town, why not this one this year?

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