Hampton University police-taxi promotes safe driving

(Olyvia Fabre)
(Olyvia Fabre)

Meshach Roberts | Staff Writer

The Hampton University Police Department (HUPD) and the Yellow Cab of Hampton are trying to prevent students from receiving a ride in the back of a police car- the most costly ride on a night out.

Both groups decided to join forces to create a vehicle that is half-taxi and half-police car  to promote safe driving and discourage drunk driving.

The car was created using an old patrol vehicle, which the Yellow Cab of Hampton painted half way. Inspiration for this vehicle came from Virginia Commonwealth University who painted a car in a similar fashion in 2013.

Other universities and high schools across the country have even gone as far as placing destroyed vehicles from drunk driving accidents on their campus.

For many students, college is a time to experiment. Brandon Funderburke, first year professional pharmacy student, from Long Island, New York said “Young adults that are away from parents and guardians for the first time can finally make their own decisions and think that doing activities like drinking gives them the confidence enough to drive under the influence.”

The main goal that HUPD and Yellow Cab of Hampton is trying to accomplish is to cause at least one person to think before drinking and driving.

Chief David E. Glover of HUPD, said “You can ride in the front (taxi car) and get arrested or the back (police car) as long as you can at least stumble in the car and pay your fare.”

Companies like Uber and Lyft, have made transportation as easy as a tap of an app. Unfortunately, during busy hours prices of both companies have been known to surge up to two and half times higher than the average fare. Although prices may be high it still is no comparison to the $10,000 average for receiving a DUI.

Fines can include bail, towing, car insurance, legal fees and court fees which can become very costly, especially for the typical college student.

As hefty as fees can be, the danger of price of taking someone’s life is much greater. According to the United States Department of Transportation, every two hours, three people are killed in an alcohol-related highway crash. Taking the chance to drive drunk could lead to fatal consequences and a 30-year setback on future plans

Students believe this is the perfect time for talks about safe driving. Nana Yaw Kumi, aviation management major, from Manassas, Virginia says “This is the age where, for the first time, alcohol is accessible in abundance and alcohol and youth don’t go together well.”

Although there is no exact way to stop all students from drinking and driving, minimizing the amount of people that attempt to is still commendable. Preventing at least one possible loss of a Hampton student is always a win.

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