NYC Cab Drivers Take Precautions Amid Coronavirus Outbreak Fears

Marla Diamond
March 04, 2020 - 7:41 am
NYC cab driver

Marla Diamond - WCBS 880


NEW YORK (WCBS 880) -- The New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission is now encouraging drivers to clean their vehicles at least daily over coronavirus fears.

Taxi drivers find themselves on the front line of the spread of the virus due to them being some of the first to interact with travelers.

Driving as many as 20 customers a shift, they've started to arm themselves with hand sanitizers in order to avoid the virus outbreak.

"Pay special attention to disinfecting surfaces and objects that are touched often, such as door handles, arm rests, and seatbelts," the TLC said in a statement.

Patrick Chaktu is taking the recommendations for coronavirus very seriously. "After each customer comes out, we spraying in the car, we use something for the hands."

He pays special attention to the door handles, credit card readers, seatbelts and the backseat touch screens in the cab.

Hand sanitizers are becoming hard to obtain and some ride share drivers are receiving help.

"We're also working to provide free hand sanitizer and antibacterial wipes for drivers and team members in our Hubs," Uber said in a statement. 

Many cabbies believe fear over coronavirus is driving down business. They say they're doing fewer pick-ups and drop-offs at airports as airlines cancel flights to coronavirus hotspots and business travel declinse.