|03-10-2010, 09:31 PM||#1|
Avalon Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Colorado Springs
Cab Drivers to Patrol Springs Streets
The Colorado Springs Police Department will soon have a new partner in fighting crime–Yellow Cab taxi drivers
Cabs on Patrol officially begins March 23 and comes at a time when Springs Police have gotten rid of their helicopter unit and have left dozens of positions unfilled. Despite the financial difficulty, police say there has been no change in the number of patrol officers--Cabs on Patrol is merely taking a good thing a step further.
"This program is new but really is a formalization of a good relationship we've had with Yellow Cab for many years," says Lt. David Whitlock with CSPD. "Every time we do good police work, you can usually tie it back to somebody picking up the phone and notifying us."
Drivers for yellow cab have been no strangers to making those calls.
"Our drivers have always reported incidents while they're out on the road," says Fred Hair, General Manager at Yellow Cab Company of Colorado Springs.
The big difference between then and now is the police training those drivers will receive.
"It'll be enough to make them a really good set of eyes and ears for us," says Whitlock.
Drivers will provide the eyes on the roads and dispatchers will provide the ears in the Yellow Cab dispatch center.
"The Colorado Springs Police Department has a direct line to our dispatcher so that they can relay suspect information or a description of a stolen vehicle," says Hair.
Similar partnerships have worked in other cities. Springs police say they are excited about the potential here.
"Every place that we've talked to that's had these kinds of common interactions, whether it be Yellow Cab or other community or business groups, have shown a great deal of increase in those kinds of calls and an improvement in the overall public safety," says Whitlock.
Both the police and Yellow Cab stress that cab drivers are not police officers---just an extra set of eyes to help. The drivers make the call and let the professionals do the work.