Puking taxi passengers will have to stomach new fine, city says

Anyone throwing up in the back of a cab in Calgary will soon be out an extra $100.

Soiling inside of taxi with vomit or 'bodily fluids' to now cost passengers $100

A new $100 clean-up fee is described as an incentive for drivers who work late night shifts because it will help them get back some of the out-of-pocket costs they pay to clean the taxis after a passenger throws up. (CBC)

Puking passengers in Calgary cabs will now have to stomach a new fine of $100.

The new clean-up fee comes after city council voted to approve an amendment to Calgary's Livery Transport Bylaw at Monday's meeting. 

In the proposal for the amendment, the fee is described as an incentive for drivers who work late night shifts because it will help them get back some of the out-of-pocket costs they pay to clean the taxis after a passenger throws up.

However, not everyone thinks the new fine is steep enough — including the Mayor.

"I actually don't think the $100 is enough," Mayor Naheed Nenshi said. "The explanation is that that's how much the cabbies think they can reasonably get out of a drunk passenger who's vomiting in their cab. I suppose that makes sense ... it's going to be tough but I think most people who throw up in the back of a cab are actually kind of embarrassed about it and want to do what's right so we'll have to rely on people's good will for this."

The fee doesn't just include vomit though — it also extends to other "bodily fluids" that soil the interior of a taxi.

It's hoped the fee will encourage more drivers to be willing to work the late night shifts.

Nenshi says he has heard from the city's licensing officials that they are looking into possible bylaw changes so that getting sick in a cab could be treated and fined as a municipal bylaw violation.

However, he says that option isn't on the table just yet and he hopes that people who soil the inside of a taxi will do the right thing and pay up.

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