NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – A New York City taxi driver is caught FaceTiming-and-driving. The worried passenger in the backseat caught it all on video and is calling on the Taxi and Limousine Commission to take action.
In the video, the driver is actually caught on FaceTime with his wife while driving a passenger to their destination. The passenger who captured the exchange from the backseat said he feared for his life.
“I want to support the yellow taxis; I just can’t support them when they could get me killed,” Pete Fogle of Hell’s Kitchen said.
Fogle has lived in the city for more than 30 years and says whenever possible he rides yellow.
“All these guys bought medallions for like a million dollars and they’re kind of getting screwed now because of Uber and Lyft.”
Last Saturday however, the cabbie focused on his phone and not the road had Fogle seeing red.
“I couldn’t believe he had the gall to do that. I mean the cell phone was in front of his face on the windshield. I never saw anything like that.”
He reportedly asked the driver to stop, but was ignored. A sign, Fogle says, of how low taxi standards have fallen.
“What happened to a couple years ago when they would be caught using hands off and they would fine you and now everything is forgotten. Time heals everything and now they’re FaceTiming their wives with customers in the back, it’s not good.”
CBS2 showed the video to the Taxi and Limousine Commission who acknowledged what the driver was doing is dangerous.
“This is distracted driving at its very worst… It is highly illegal,” the organization said in its reply.
CBS2’s Tara Jakeway also showed the shocking video to people on the street.
“No, no, phones shouldn’t be in view. I think cars and people in front of you should be,” Fayaz lalani of Queens said.
“That’s your profession, that’s your job, that’s something that you’re supposed to make sure everyone is safe including yourself,” Fatu Bathily added.
New Yorkers CBS2 spoke to said they don’t want this driver to lose his job – considering how tough it is for cab drivers now that the state slammed all for-hire vehicles with congestion pricing.
The Taxi and Limousine Commission said it’s investigating this incident.