NORFOLK, Va. (NPD) - A “police taxi” with a distinctive paint job is being deployed around the city of Norfolk to discourage people from drinking and driving.
The front half of the Chevrolet Impala is painted like a standard police car, but the back half is painted like a Coastal Ride taxi with the word “Safe Ride” on the side.
“The police taxi will be utilized at DUI checkpoints and placed on display at various locations and events throughout the city,” Lieutenant Michael Felix of the Norfolk Police Traffic Division stated.
Coastal Ride donated the police taxi as part of a Don’t Drink and Drive Campaign.
“Our hope for donating this vehicle to the police department is to encourage our community to drink responsibly and never to drink and drive” Judith Swystun, President of Coastal Ride stated.
A message painted on the side says, “Choose your ride,” indicating that a taxi ride could cost around $15.00 and a police ride for Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol could cost around $8,100.
The police taxi will make its debut this evening during "First Friday's" in downtown Norfolk and will mainly serve as a rolling billboard. It will not operate as a standard police car, and it doesn't work as a taxi. Instead, it’s designed to start a discussion and make people think before they act.
“The goal behind this unique vehicle is to increase public awareness, create discussion about the dangers of impaired driving, and remind motorists that they need to make responsible decisions while drinking,” Felix said.
“It’s an easy choice to make,” said Felix. “Take a taxi, and save lives.”