Hands off: Don't be a rank outside

DRIVING a taxi around Gympie in the early hours of Saturday and Sunday morning isn't always easy.

Taxi drivers get to see the best and worst of people and violence can be an issue, especially around the taxi rank when the pubs and clubs shut down at 3am.

But Gympie Cabs' managing director Jackie Fallon says 99% of their passengers are a pleasure to drive and behave themselves at the taxi rank.

"Most are very well behaved and just want to get home," she said.

Gympie Cabs has got behind The Gympie Times Hands Off anti-violence campaign and are urging patrons to keep their cool coming into the busy Christmas period.

Mrs Fallon's partner Barry, who is Gympie Cabs' assistant manger and a taxi driver, says most of the issues at the taxi rank are caused by people with bad personalities made worse by drinking or drugs.

"They might have a beef early in the night and catch up with the person at the taxi rank," he said.

HandsOff ambassador Steve Renouf: Former rugby league international star Steve Renouf talks to APN senior sports reporter Wayne 'Ticker' Heming about why he got behind the #HandsOff campaign to tackle violence on our streets.
HandsOff ambassador Steve Renouf: Former rugby league international star Steve Renouf talks to APN senior sports reporter Wayne 'Ticker' Heming about why he got behind the #HandsOff campaign to tackle violence on our streets.

 

The duo has applauded the decision to install more cameras in the CBD to help identify trouble-makers.

They have even offered to have the video feed live streamed into the taxi call centre to help out police.

Mrs Fallon said a call centre staff member could keep an eye on the hotspots and alert police to any potential problems.

"Hopefully, people will be able to be moved on before they cause any trouble," Mrs Fallon said.

But until that happens they are urging late-night patrons to treat drivers with respect.

"We won't have our drivers being abused," Mrs Fallon said.

"Respect the driver and the vehicle and everyone is happy."