Cabbies Refusing Brooklyn Fares?

There’s speculation that cab drivers are refusing Manhattan to Brooklyn trips, possibly because of traffic delays caused by work on the Brooklyn Bridge.

Gothamist: Have you been having trouble getting a taxi from Manhattan to Brooklyn recently? The Post has, and if the Post has a problem, them everyone must be having a problem. They set their crack team of hack scientists to canvass lower Manhattan, and found that nearly half the cabbies refused to take them over the bridge, which is currently undergoing infuriatingly extensive renovations. We’re not that surprised, but hell, we have trouble getting cabbies to take us to the right destinations in Brooklyn anytime; once, we hailed a cab in Williamsburg to take us to the south end of Brooklyn Heights, and were dropped off in Prospect Heights.

Has anyone had more than usual difficulty getting cabs to Brooklyn lately?

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  • amanda

    Unfortunately the bridge construction is scheduled to go on for the next FOUR years, and it doesn’t help any to “suggest taking the Manhattan Bridge back, where traffic moves faster” when it’s the only option (remember, the Bklyn Bridge Manhattan-bound lanes are closed after 11PM weekdays, midnight weekends). The problem is that SO many cars have to go that route that they are backed up for 2+ hours.

  • T. Nielsen Hayden

    I haven’t had any unusual difficulty getting a cab to Brooklyn. I walk with a cane, and getting into a cab is a bit of a struggle at the best of times, so most cabbies neglect to ask me where I’m going until I’m in the cab and they’ve started moving. So far, none of them have been brazen enough to try to evict me.

    If you need to take control of a situation in a cab, stay inside the vehicle but open the nearest door. The only way a cabbie can evict you without your cooperation is via real or threatened assault, so as long as you stay in the cab, he’s stuck with you. Opening a door attracts attention, and it keeps him from zooming off to a destination of his own choosing before you’ve settled the argument.

    Starting to call 311 or the TLC from the back of the cab is a good idea. Cabbies will generally back down before you finish placing the call. If after that you still have a bad feeling about the situation, and there’s no other way to get home, wait until the vehicle is in motion, then place a call to some other reliable party and tell them what happened. Give them the cabbie’s name and other information, plus your starting point and destination, and say you’ll call again after you’re home to confirm that you’ve had an uneventful ride.

    The only other rule I know is to never get into a cab, livery car, or gypsy cab if there’s another person in it besides the driver. That one’s self-explanatory.

  • nabeguy

    Don’t you guys get it? The cabbies are not avoiding the bridge, they’re avoiding the bike lane!

  • k4kenner

    I just got off a 3+ hour ride on Metro North [which should have taken an hour and a half] and hailed the first on-duty cab I could find…. “on-duty” being the key word. Now…. I understand the snow storm is causing extra problems, but I loaded my 5 bags into the car and then proceeded to tell him I was headed to Brooklyn Heights. The cabbie immediately pulled over, turned on his “off-duty” sign and proceeded to shut the car off – telling me there was no way “in Hell” he was taking me to BH. “ENRAGED” is putting his response to the words “Brooklyn Heights” lightly. When I told him I was happy to sit in the car and call the cops, he put on his hazards, grabbed his bag and left the car… headed for the McD’s across the street….. I was stunned!

    I have experienced this more and more over the last few months and as everyone seems to agree, it’s just going to get worse unless there is some sort of crack down….

    What can we do to get something done about this….. and soon! We are being punished for living in Brooklyn…. this has to stop!

  • Just A Neighbor

    K4 – PLEASE tell me you at least called 311..or stayed there til he came back from his wonderful meal of hotcakes :)

  • David on Middagh

    More ferries?