Archive for TA

Why Do We Call Cops Pigs

Posted in Driving Basics, Law Enforcement, Random Info with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 13, 2011 by HackingVegas

I drive all over the Las Vegas Valley and see all kinds of things. Over the last few weeks I’ve noticed that this one Highway Patrol Officer is helping stranded motorist. At first I thought that it was cool that our officers are stepping up and working on some good PR.  Our state already offers a “Freeway Service Patrol” (FSP) that roams the main highways during the day and helps people get their cars working or off the freeway safely.

These guys are busy all day and could use the help of  others. If you are a guy on the side of the road, I hope you know what to do.

Ok not really, the FSP will get to you as they make their rounds. But I did notice that the Officer that has been helping is picking and choosing who he helps.  I noticed that every car he has stopped for has been a young woman who is standing right over him.

But the other day I saw something that really stood out to how he is picking and choosing. About 200 feet apart were two cars with flat tires. The first car had two older ladies standing there and I can assume waiting for FSP.

The second one had a young woman standing there as the officer who had to pass the other car to get to this one was changing her tire.

I know men are known as pigs in many women’s eyes and lets not forget what cops are known as. The last thing we need is this guy showing the women in our life that this is true. Come on now, think before you act guys. You’re really not helping our case.

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Now I’m Pissed

Posted in Driving Basics, Law Enforcement with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 8, 2011 by HackingVegas

I’m pissed! I’m so pissed right now that I paused my podcast to type this up and the wife can confirm that I don’t like falling behind on my podcasts. What could have possibly pissed me off to this point? Well let me tell you.

This morning I’m sitting at the Circus Circus hotel and I watch at least 4 groups come out and get in the taxi line. As I go to pull up the doorman helps them over to a shuttle bus sitting 10 feet from the taxi line. I blow it off thinking that they were just confused and got in the wrong line. I finally get a fare and go on with my day. It’s really slow today so I stay on the strip trying to make the time go by. A few hours later I pull onto The Cosmopolitan and get to the front kind of quick for how slow it is. Then, as I’m called up by the door man to load. I see a total of 8 people in line that are clearly divided into 3 groups.

I get out of my cab to help load the bags when the doorman takes the first group to a shuttle waiting about 10 feet away. I found that odd but then started helping the next group. While loading the bags the doorman comes back and helps with the last bag. But as he grabs it he asks if the group would rather take “the very nice shuttle for only $6 per person.” I stop talking to one of the guys and turn to the doorman. I feel my face getting red and my blood start to boil. Before saying a word I take a breath and remind myself that the doorman may not know.

See about a year or two ago, limo drivers were paying the doormen to pull out good fares from the cab lines and load them into limos. They were making up all kinds of stories to do this. We were told it was illegal for them to do so and we needed to call and report it to the taxi authority. I know at least 2 doormen were fired over this and even though it happens still, it’s not happening while the guests are in line.

So I let the door man know what he was doing is wrong and that doormen were getting on trouble for doing that in the past. He apologized and told the guests to get in the cab and enjoy the day. He then called over the head guy on the floor and informed him. The shuttle was gone by the time I got back. So doorman at The Cosmopolitan, you’re one of the good ones.

Now here is where the steam comes out the ears and flames come with every breath. After dropping off I decide to call the taxi authority about this. It had been a while since I’ve seen this happen so I should let them know. The dispatcher picks up and I let him know what happened. I asked if they are still needing names and plate numbers. When I’m done, I hear him laughing. Oh I’m pissed. This Taxi Authority is our “Police” and they are suppose to be there for us. Why is he laughing? When he’s done he says that’s not what they handle. They only deal with taxi issues. I let him know this is a taxi issue and they use to deal with this all the time. He blew me off and then said that they have never taken calls about this and I didn’t know what I was talking about. At this point I feel my heart racing and my blood boiling. I’m just about to go off but I bite my tongue and explain that I’ve called a few times about this and that I know of a doorman even being fired. He again tells me I don’t know what I’m talking about and says “if there is nothing I need from him he’s just going to go.” Oh shit. I cant even see straight I’m so mad.

I hang up and start remembering every reason I hate this job. I have my ups and downs but for some reason when I deal with the taxi authority it’s always bad even when I’m the victom (I’ll share that story soon).  I’m not use to being treated the way hacks are treated out here and I wish we had a stronger voice. But when our unions suck and most of the drivers are too afraid to speak up because they know they will lose their jobs, it’s hard to make things change. Those of us that have the skills to change careers make too good of money to just up and leave without it impacting our families. So deal with the shit and move on.

I pulled this off a website ran by a Las Vegas Cab Driver:

      

 

This website/forum is operated by a Las Vegas Taxi Driver who wishes to remain anonymous. Unfortunately due to the corrupt nature of the Las Vegas Taxi Industry, agents of change must remain anonymous for fear of severe repercussions. History has shown most who speak out are run out of the business altogether.  The drivers need a voice, and this website is one of those.

 

So now that I’ve vented, I will take my two days off and head back in Sunday hoping for a better day. What a way to end the work week.

A Cab Drivers Voice

Posted in Driving Basics, Law Enforcement, Random Info, Touching Stories with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 1, 2011 by HackingVegas

I recently wrote a post titled “F The B”  that struck a chord with me. It got me thinking about my industry and made me angry. I have my wife proof all my posts and when she finished “F That B” she asked me something I haven’t thought about in a while.

Wife: please tell me you reported this?
Me: I wish I could’ve but it goes no where.
Wife: what are you talking about, why wouldn’t it go anywhere?
Me: trust me, been here done that, I’m over it.

This conversation really made me think and it made me mad. I’m not this kind of person. I’m the kind of person that calls in every drunk driver, stops at most traffic accidents where help is not already there (I use to work in the medical field and try to help when I can), and help people in need within reason. So why have I changed my ways? Why is, “It’s a waste of time”, my first thought? I started thinking and I think I figured it out.

I remember the first time I reached out to try to help someone who was in need after I had started to drive a cab. It was about three months after I started and I had picked up a single male from the airport who was going to the Stratosphere Hotel. On the way there I started in on my normal chit chat. He was in from Kentucky and said he was wanting to find his friends while he was in town. I asked where they were staying and got an answer I never in a million years expected, “They’re dead”. A calm silence filled the car. I had no clue what to say. I’m a trained critical incident counselor and found myself speechless. So I did the one thing I could think of. I listened.

He started telling me about his plan while in Vegas and how he had even told people at home. He said they just laughed it off and told him,”you need this break so enjoy your time out there”. The details started pouring out. He came to town with a backpack that was full of every dollar to his name. He booked a room at the hotel for a week and after checking in, he was going to hit the tables. He was going to play the tables until he had nothing but $100 left. When he got down to his “goal” he planned to eat a “nice meal” and go find his friends. I asked how he planned to find his friends and he came back with a detailed explanation.

First I plan to rig a rope to the ceiling of the room. I then plan to dangle there until I see them. But if the ceiling is too low, I will find a way to fly off the tower. One way or another I will find them and life will go on.

Once again I didn’t know what to say. I started with the basics and I asked if he had thought about getting help from the VA. He said he doesn’t want their help and that he believed that they are the reason he feels this way. They took his friends so why would they want to help him. I then asked if I could take him to a place that was not a part of the military to try and get him some help. He refused.  I took the last few minutes to try to talk him down but had no response.  I was wishing that I could just take him to the hospital or somewhere for help, but as a driver it is against the law for me to take a fare anywhere other than where they want to go. I could be charged with kidnapping and much more. So I pull up to the hotel and let him out.  I then call over the bellman and let him know what he was telling me. I get blown off and move on to security with the same response.  I then call my supervisor and fill him in on what I had just been told and once again got the blow off.  Not knowing what else to do, I called the Taxi Authority and they said I need to let the hotel know and that it was all that I could do.

I was upset. Everywhere I turned I got the same response and felt helpless.  I sat there for a few minutes and finally just went back to work. I felt like shit the rest of the day. The next few days I tried to find out what happened to him and see if the hotel had any issues with guests. I got no where and finally had to just push it out of my mind.  I had a few more situations similar to this and time after time I got the same response. I have developed a mind-set over the last few years to just let things go. I am just a driver and all I have to do is get someone from point A to point B. I only help when I’m asked to.

I still have a hard time with this and I know this fare will always be in the back of my mind. I wish there was a way to make changes in the industry. Give me your thoughts and let me know what you would do.

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

Cab Driver Remembered.

Posted in Driving Basics, Touching Stories, UPDATES with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 10, 2011 by HackingVegas

Links to remember.

Vigil held in honor of murdered cab driver.

ABC News coverage.

Friends and family

I’ve posted more on my face book

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?

Cabbie Killed Over What?

Posted in Driving Basics, Law Enforcement, Robberies with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 5, 2011 by HackingVegas

I don’t work Friday’s or Saturdays so when I turned the news on this evening I was shocked to hear a fellow cab driver was killed yesterday morning. The driver was an employee at the company I driver for.  I wish the family of this driver my deepest condolences. I have shared this story on my Facebook and hope locals will help in finding these animals. No life is worth any amount of money.

Here are some links if you choose:

Local Fox 5

Local ABC 13

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