Taxi driver abused after rescuing young drunk woman
YOUNG, drunk, with no way to get home, she would have been easy pickings in the middle of the night for a bent mind.
The teenage girl was picked up at 2am on Christmas Day by a Sunshine Coast cabbie who was prepared to accept payment from her mother at the other end and put up with the girl's vomiting on the way.
But for his trouble, Jeff Watson copped a mouthful of abuse.
The Suncoast Cabs driver unleashed his frustration in a Facebook post.
"I was actually concerned she might be better off in the back of an ambulance on her way to emergency than in a taxi," he wrote.
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The story follows a similar incident last month when grave concerns were held for the health of a heavily intoxicated female taxi passenger picked up from a Mooloolaba nightspot.
Mr Watson alleged the girl's mother, who appeared "tipsy" herself, became abusive when he told her the fare would be $28.60.
He said the fare would normally have been around $20 but he had been forced to stop four times to allow the girl to vomit.
He said the woman claimed it had not been her daughter's fault that she had been sick, he said.
Mr Watson alleged that when he asked whose fault it was, the mother threw $30 in his face and kept a barrage of swearing while he counted the change.
Suncoast Cabs general manager John Lobwein said the number of drunk female passengers was never-ending.
"It's probably easier to tell you about the ones that aren't than the ones that are," Mr Lobwein said.
"We aren't social workers, but, by God, we do a lot of social work."
Mr Lobwein believed the rise in alcopops meant many young people did not learn to drink responsibly.
He said society's attitudes towards drinking had to change.
"Unfortunately, it's going to have to get worse before it gets better," he said.
JEFF WATSON'S FACEBOOK POST
Just finished my night shift (it's now about 7am on Christmas morning) and the highlight of my night must be the VERY inebriated (approximately) 17-year-old girl I picked up about 2am this morning.
She explained her mother was too drunk to come and get her, but will pay the taxi fare for her when we get home, which was less than $20 away (normally), except we had to stop 4 times on the way home while the girl got out of the taxi to chuck up... I was actually concerned at one point that she would be better off in the back of an ambulance on her way to emergency than in a taxi... lol
So we finally get to her house where she immediately jumps out of the taxi to chuck up once again as her tipsy mother comes to the driver's side door to pay the fare... and the conversation goes something like this (with all her swear words removed for brevity reasons):
"So how much is the fare?"
"It came to $28.60 thanks."
"Bullshit! I got a taxi from there just the other day and the fare was less than ten dollars!" (just to clarify, this fare could NOT be done for anywhere near "less than ten dollars" at any time, so she was taking some liberty with the truth... lol)
"Well normally it would be just under twenty dollars, but"
"You're just ripping me off!"
"As I was trying to explain, we were forced to stop a few times because your daughter had to chuck up."
"So you kept the meter running when she was sick? That's bullshit! You should stop the meter!"
"She is employing me to look after her and get her home safely and stopping time is a reasonable part of the costs."
"No it isn't. It's not her fault she was sick"
"And whose fault is it then madam?"
At that she threw $30.00 in my face and kept up a barrage of swearing while I counted out all her change... what, no tip? lol
"I'm going to write to the newspaper about you!"
"That's very kind of you madam as it isn't often people bother to write a thank you note praising the hard-working taxi drivers who give up their Christmas Days with their own families in order to see other people's kids home safely early on a Christmas morning. How very kind of you."
For some reason, my comment bought on another barrage of swearing and, as I checked to make sure the girl was safely on the footpath and noted she was laying in a pool of her own vomit with the hem of her dress up around her hips, I drove off slowly down the street leaving the mother shouting something nice, no doubt, about caring taxi drivers.
So Mark Furler, when you receive a letter from this mother at your newspaper office suggesting taxi drivers rip off poor innocent little girls, remember there are allegations, then there is truth!
Anyway, now I'm about to try to get a few hours sleep before waking to a Christmas lunch of day-old vegemite sandwiches then hitting the streets and doing it all over again tonight... and sometimes I truly wonder why we bother!
May everyone else's Christmas Day with your families be wonderful, my friends!