Yellow Cab debuts city’s first wheelchair accessible vehicles
Ike Mgbatogu | 8/5/2013, 10:25 a.m.
COLUMBUS – It was an idea planted earlier this year. And last week, it bore sweet fruit.
That idea, which was to introduce cabs for disabled folks, was announced after the city lifted the moratorium on issuing new cab licenses in the city of Columbus.
According to Councilmember Michelle Mills, who is the chair of the council Public Safety and Judiciary Committee, the primary reason for lifting the interdict was to promote community inclusion by allowing the licensing of an additional number of cabs able to accommodate those in wheelchair who wish to ride the cab.
As a result, 30 new cab licenses were issued to companies able to offer rides with vehicles equipped with wheel chair. Yellow Cab, perhaps, the undisputed Sultan of the cab Kingdom, gobbled up 10 of these rare licenses. Companies that were issued these special cab licenses are required to be able to “operate wheelchair-accessible vehicles that will be on call 24 hours a day.”
Yellow Cab is first to show off its own wheelchair-accessible vehicles. The company’s President Jeff Kates is thrilled about her company having the opportunity to get involved in serving this population of riders.
“We knew this was a prime opportunity to better serve our current customers,” said Kates, who also noted, “We knew what it would mean to the quality of life for so many people in our community throughout the city and Franklin County.”
Councilmember Mills pushed these efforts because in her view, “It will add a measure of convenience for these individuals and help make Columbus a more open and inclusive community.” She applauded the achievement of Yellow Cab in advancing the aim of this initiative.
“This is an important and exciting day for the City of Columbus, as well as our residents and visitors,” said Mills, adding, “These wheelchair accessible cabs are a less expensive way for those with limited mobility to travel, and highlight how Columbus is working to be the most inclusive community possible.”
Commenting on how helpful this achievement will be for Columbus residents with disabilities, Jennifer Flynn, disabled herself, elatedly noted, “This has been a long-awaited mode of transportation reform,” said Flynn.
“We can be out in the community with our families and have last-minute transportation available to us, as well as to visitors who come to our city.”
The city’s Director of Public Affairs and Development for Experience Columbus Mike Brown agreed, saying, “Building our hospitality system for visitors means taking steps to be accessible for all,” said Brown, adding, “We are proud to work with Yellow Cab and local transportation companies to make sure it is safe and easy to travel between Columbus’ many attractions, districts and neighborhoods.”
To request a wheelchair accessible cab, call (614) 444-4444 or visit: www.yellowcabofcolumbus.com.