LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - For some drinking can be a tradition to ring in the new year on New Year's Eve. When it comes to getting home after the celebration City Cab in Lafayette has tried to help out the partiers by offering free taxi rides on the holiday.
"For the last 8 years we've been able to get donations from different companies and sponsors," City Cab Manager Dennis Graves said.
Graves said it takes between $10,000 and $20,000 to provide the free rides. He said the economy is to blame for the lack of sponsors.
Even if the rides aren't free Graves expects the night to be busy.
"We will be fully staffed," Graves said. "We'll have all our dispatchers on staff."
Lafayette Police recommend you pick up your phone and call one of those dispatchers if you've been drinking on New Year's Eve. Lafayette Police Sergeant Bob Baumgartner said police will be looking for drunken drivers that night.
"[Officers] will be more diligent and looking for more impaired drivers probably more than on a normal basis," Baumgartner said. "We'll also have extra officers out on the streets working specific DUI projects."
Baumgartner said more awareness on the dangers of drunken driving has cut down on New Year's Eve DUI arrests.
"It's not uncommon that we have only one or two drunk driving arrests on New Year's Eve," Baumgartner said. "I don't think it's because we're not seeing it or following it or they're not being reported. I think it is because of the awareness. People realize it's just not worth it and there are so many other options."
Graves hopes next year one of those options will again be a free cab ride.
Until then Graves said he likes being in a business that with a little fee can help get drunken drivers off the streets.
Four Star Taxi in Lafayette also reported they are unable to give free rides this year. Hey Taxi is still trying to offer free rides and are looking for donations.
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