Wisconsin News

Safe rides home this New Years Eve

La Crosse, Wis. (WKBT) - Officers aren't the only ones prepping for New Year's Eve. Taxi companies are also gearing up for what is expected to be another busy night and they're partnering with the La Crosse Tavern League to help get you home, for free.   

Joe Erickson has taken many calls as the lead dispatcher of CTS Taxi. Since the Safe Ride Program began a number of years ago the amount of calls has gone up, and on News Years Eve the number of calls gets even higher.

"We are swamped. We put out as many cars as we have. This year I think we're running 8 or 9 cars," Erickson said.

So, what is the Safe Ride Program?

"A safe ride is a voucher ticket issued from the bar to the rider and they issue that ticket, they call a cab company, and they issue it to the driver. You pretty much meter it like you normally would but it's all wrote down. It's for La Crosse County only though, so they can get a ride back to their house in La Crosse County and it's completely payed for by the Tavern League," Erickson said.

Currently the service is offered to all establishments in La Crosse County.

"We are extending our services to taverns that dont belong to the tavern league. If they have someone there please use the taxi service," Vice President of the Tavern League Glenn Garbers said.


The Tavern League feels that the program has brought the numbers of drunk drivers down and it's not just available on holidays like New Year's.

"Its more apt to be an increase in drinking during that period of time. and our awareness is out there 365 days a year," Garbers said.

So this New Years Eve if you need a ride home ask your bartender about the Safe Ride. La Crosse's taxis' are more than willing, to offer you a lift.

"Its just bringing in all our drivers and everything we can do to get people home safely and as quick as we can," Erickson said.

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