Police responded to the cab, which was parked on S. Joyce Street across from Pentagon Row, around 4:00 a.m. on Monday morning. They were told that the passenger was intoxicated and, following the 150+ mile drive from Ocean City to Arlington, the driver was not able to wake him up.
Police arrived on scene and assisted in waking up the man. Within a few minutes, the cab was on its way back to Ocean City.
Lauren Satchell, a manager for the cab company, Ocean City Taxi, said long distance rides like that one are not unheard of. In fact, she said the company handles one or two such requests per week. Recent destinations, according to one driver, included College Park, Md. and New York City.
“We go anywhere, as long as there’s money for the ride,” Satchell said. According to Satchell, passengers on such rides are required to make a $400 cash deposit prior to the trip. If there’s money left over at the end, it’s refunded. Another manager said the ride to Arlington would have likely cost around $350.
As for why passengers would travel such a far distance by cab, we’re told that the reasons vary, but usually involve some sort of emergency that requires them to get somewhere as soon as possible, or a situation that leaves them without transportation home.
“Usually, when someone goes from Ocean City to far away it’s because something happened, like they got pulled over and their license was suspended, or they come down with a friend and their friends left them,” Satchell said.
Satchell said she could not confirm why police were called on Monday, but did say that the company has a policy regarding unresponsive passengers.
“Legally we are not allowed to touch them to wake them up,” she said. “So if we can’t get them up by screaming, our procedure is to call the police department.”