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Gas stations’ fuel discount for struggling taxi trade

Taxi drivers are struggling to make ends meet because of the Covid-19 pandemic (File photograph)

A duo of gas stations have teamed up to give 10 per cent gas discounts to cab drivers hit by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Esso Warwick and Esso Crawl Hill said the discount scheme, which started last Saturday, would run to the end of July, but could be extended.

David Frost, the president of the Bermuda Taxi Owners & Operators Association, said his members appreciated the gesture.

He added: “It’s been very difficult out here for our drivers - some may get one or two jobs a day.

“We do have flights coming in but none that are really packed – most come in with about 30 passengers.

“You may get more but nowhere near a full plane coming in. We have drivers at the airport every day, some get jobs and some don’t.”

Mr Frost said: “There are a lot of taxis that are not out there because there is not enough work for everybody – they are just at home waiting for things to turn around.

“The drivers appreciate everything they can get at this time to keep them moving.”

Joseph Marable, the co-owner of Esso Crawl Hill, said the discount was a good way for he and co-owner Lorna Dixon to support the taxi trade over the crisis.

Mr Marable added: “Since the pandemic came about, we said it would be something that would be helpful. I talk to them regularly and the stories have been extremely difficult.

“We are a community-based store. We try to be inclusive and we thought it would help benefit them as they have been struggling.”

Mr Frost said that Island Construction had offered taxi drivers 15 per cent off tyres and the Bermuda Red Cross had provided taxi drivers financial assistance with a scheme to take people without transport to Covid-19 vaccination clinics.

Mr Frost added taxi drivers had strict rules to protect drivers and the public from infection.

He said: “A large number of us are vaccinated. We have many protocols in place for drivers on how to sanitise cars, wearing masks, opening the windows and so on.

“Most drivers are on top of their game in terms of making sure visitors and locals are safe.”

Mr Frost added he hoped the situation would improve as vaccination levels increased.

He said: “I am hoping it doesn’t last too long but we do need to be patient.”

This story has been corrected to state that the Crawl Hill gas station is an Esso station, not Rubis.

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Published May 04, 2021 at 8:08 am (Updated May 04, 2021 at 12:24 pm)

Gas stations’ fuel discount for struggling taxi trade

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