Boston Cabbie Calls Suspension “UnFARE”

July 29, 2009 by  
Filed under Tech/Sci

Joseph Cohen, a Boston cabdriver for 39 years, “almost took the blame” when he picked up a family at Logan International Aiport and drove them to their home in the Mattapan neighbor, only to learn Massachusetts state police “were looking for him. ”

“He was told the family left a child in his cab.”

Cohen recollects the experience:

“I said, ‘What?’ So I looked in the back and I see the baby sleeping. I said, ‘What should I do?’ So you know, I will take the baby (back) to the family,’ he said. ‘The father came out. He was very happy.'”

At that time, Cohen received an extra $50 tip from the relieved father.

However, the next day, “Cohen was ordered to report to the Hackney unit, where police told him his license was being suspended for three days because he didn’t do a thorough check of the van. He appealed the suspension and was allowed to keep his license pending a hearing. On Tuesday, he visited the police station with an attorney and learned he would only get a warning.

“‘We are very happy that the baby was safely returned to mom and dad,’ said Elaine Driscoll, a police spokeswoman. ‘That said, it was an important opportunity to remind cab drivers why we have a rule that dictates they must check the back of their cab after every fare.'”

“Cohen said the girl had been in the back of the van behind another seat and he could not see her from his rearview mirror or from the outside of the vehicle.

“The cabbies’ union expressed outrage at the proposed suspension, saying the fault should lie with the child’s family, not the driver.

“Police would not release the names of the parents but said they were not being investigated.”

(Apparently, taking luggage from a cab is more important when you get home than remembering you have a five-year-old daughter sleeping in the back of the taxi.  And cabbies everywhere should remember to look INSIDE their vehicles after dropping off a fare.)