Whiteabbey man appeals for end to taxi ‘torture’

Mark Brewer outside his Whiteabbey home. INNT 20-404-RM
Mark Brewer outside his Whiteabbey home. INNT 20-404-RM

A WHITEABBEY man has appealed to taxi drivers to “show some courtesy” by not sounding their horns in the early hours of the morning.

Mark Brewer from the Glenville Road area said he has been tortured by taxi drivers using their horns when collecting customers and has even been threatened for asking one driver to stop.

That incident happened around 4.30am on a Sunday morning when Mark asked the driver to stop hitting his horn.

The taxi firm, following advice from the police, later apologised.

Mark said: “The driver was sitting in his car hitting the horn. I had already been wakened by other taxis so I went out to ask him to stop it.

“He swore at me and told me he would sort me out and as I walked away I heard him get out of the car.

“It was all very scary, but at least they have apologised now.”

Mark (39), who has a six-year-old son, works in security and throughout the week is on the nightshift.

His only day off is on a Saturday night and he said his sleep is totally disrupted by “inconsiderate” taxi drivers.

He added: “It happens every Saturday night and Sunday morning between 11pm and 7am - there is no let up, it can be three or four times in a night and it totally wrecks your sleep.

“It is just pure laziness too, because there is a buzzer for each apartment and they just refuse to get out of the car.

“I’ve called around all the local firms just to ask that their drivers show a bit of courtesy, but they haven’t listened to me.”

A police spokesman urged taxi drivers to use “common courtesy” or face a possible £30 fine.

He said: “Police would remind motorists in general, and taxi drivers in particular, that in certain circumstances it is an offence to sound a vehicle’s horn.

“When your vehicle is moving, use the horn only if you need to warn other road users of your presence.

“It should never be used aggressively, and must not be used between 11.30pm and 7am in a built up area, or when your vehicle is stationary, unless a moving vehicle poses a danger.

“Common courtesy should also dictate that this practice should not be used to alert householders to the fact that their taxi is waiting, and it is particularly inconsiderate to do so during the early hours of the morning when many people are trying to sleep.

“Motorists should take note of the advice on offer and to remember that sounding a car horn while stationary, or strident use of a car horn are offences that both attract a non-endorsable £30 fixed penalty notice.”