Taxis leave many stranded downtown on New Year’s Eve

Taxis leave many stranded downtown on New Year's Eve (Image 1)

A fun New Year's Eve night out quickly turned into a nightmare for many as they tried to make their way home from downtown Nashville in the cold and rain.

This year, an estimated 50,000 people celebrated New Year's Eve on Lower Broadway but once the party ended, many found themselves stranded.

“We've been walking around downtown trying to find a cab and we have not been able to find one for about two and a half hours now,” Megan Mullaney told Nashville's News 2 shortly after Midnight.

Some even resorted to walking several blocks in the downpour, searching for a taxi only to be turned away.

“A lot of them just weren't stopping, and they were just kind of driving right be even though their light was on,” said Patrick Sullivan, who was visiting Music City from Boston.

Mullaney said trying to call for a taxi wasn't any better.  “There's nobody answering to our calls so I'm very upset with that,” he sad.

Even worse, some were asked to pay an unfair flat rate.

“When we did get a cab, the taxi cab drivers had their meters off and all they were saying to us is $100, $100 and if we didn't agree to the $100 they would drive away,” one visitor who did not want to be identified told Nashville's News 2.

According to the Metro Transportation Licensing Commission, they only authorize one flat rate, a $25 fee for taxis traveling between Nashville International Airport, downtown Nashville and areas surrounding the Opryland Hotel.

Any other request for a flat rate is a violation of Metro's Transportation Licensing Commission code.

“The attitude of the taxi cabs [was] that [they] wanted obviously to make extra money for New Year's Eve.”

Visitors to downtown Nashville hope changes are made before they again visit downtown Nashville for another big event.

“Let's try to get another way of helping us out downtown,” Mullaney said, “we're trying to come out here and have a good time, and we want a better way home.”

Nashville's News 2 attempted to contact one of the cab companies accused of trying to charge the $100 flat rate.  Calls were not returned.

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