Alpine taxi trial car­ries first fare

Three month trial be­gins for cab ser­vice

Myrtleford Times - - Front Page - By JAMIE KRON­BORG

MYRTLE­FORD’S Irene Shan­non has wel­comed the re­turn of the Alpine taxi ser­vice.

The 81-year-old was the first pas­sen­ger for driver Arnold Sparks when a three-month trial of the re­vived ser­vice opened in Myrtle­ford on Mon­day.

Ms Shan­non had been suf­fer­ing in­fluenza and had made the jour­ney from her Niela Cres­cent home for an ap­point­ment at the Stan­dish Street Surgery, where the prac­ti­tion­ers in­clude James Wei.

Dr Wei and his wife, Denise, are fund­ing the ser­vice and have supplied a car and engaged on ros­ter three driv­ers for the limited-dis­tance trial.

The Taxi Com­mis­sion approved and VicRoads last week li­censed the use of Dr Wei’s hy­brid car as the ser­vice taxi.

It is work­ing be­tween Myrtle­ford and Bright and is avail­able Mon­day-Thurs­day 8am-5pm, Fri­day 8am-12am, Satur­day 8am-2pm and 6pm-12am, and Sunday 8am-2pm.

Pas­sen­gers will be able to ar­range travel within Ovens Val­ley com­mu­ni­ties or to be taken to Wan­garatta, but the ser­vice will not be avail­able for book­ings to or from Mount Beauty at this stage.

The Weis have shaped the ser­vice with the help of 120 peo­ple who re­sponded to a sur­vey dis­trib­uted at Myrtle­ford surgery, the town’s two phar­ma­cies and its bak­ery and post of­fice ear­lier this year.

Dr Wei said about 50 per cent of the com­pleted sur­veys were sub­mit­ted by Fri­day and Satur­day night ho­tel pa­trons, and the other half from peo­ple who were house­bound or el­derly.

The Weis have said they will spend the next three months as­sess­ing com­mu­nity de­mand for the ser­vice and test­ing its vi­a­bil­ity.

Ms Shan­non said she was par­tic­u­larly pleased that she had not had to push her wheeled walker back up the hill to­wards her home, and Mr Sparks, un­load­ing the walker from the taxi boot, said it had been a plea­sure to help her.

The other two ros­tered driv­ers are Gail Daw­son and Alan Muller.

Taxi book­ings can be made by call­ing 0427 553 330.

PHOTO: Jamie Kron­borg

OP­POR­TU­NITY: Taxi driver Arnold Sparks helped Irene Shan­non from the Myrtle­ford taxi at the end of the first fare for the three-month trial ser­vice on Mon­day.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.