Mountains Taxi up and running again

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By Jessi Marlatt

Mountains Taxi has resumed service and once again began taking reservations on Dec. 17, with drivers hitting the streets on Friday. 

The interruption in service came after the company was notified of an increase in the cost of its liability insurance just days before the policy was to expire, said Chris Phelps, an owner of Mountains Taxi, which suspended service Nov. 11. The company has found another insurance provider.

"All our drivers are anxious and eager to get out on the road, and our customers want us back," Phelps said last week. "When we look at renewals in the future, we will have to be much more aggressive getting a quote." 

Colorado requires $500,000 in liability coverage, Phelps said, adding that amount strains the budgets of some taxicab companies. 

The interruption in service was a challenge for some community members with special needs who rely on Mountains Taxi to provide transportation, Phelps said. 

“We are an integral part of the community because we provide rides to people that don't have other options to get to and from long-term-care facilities,” Phelps said. "They are active and involved in the community and need transportation.” 

The company had been providing 50 to 60 rides a day before suspending service. 

Mountains Taxi, whose rates will remain the same, recently purchased another vehicle; its fleet now contains six sedans and four vans, which were dug out of snowbanks last week after being parked for a month. 

Options in the Evergreen-Conifer area

Founded in 2008, Mountains Taxi is licensed by the PUC to serve a 400-square-mile area that includes Evergreen, Golden, Lakewood, Conifer, Bailey, Idaho Springs, Black Hawk and Central City. In addition, the service provides regional transportation to DIA. 

Public-transportation alternatives in the mountain area include RTD’s Call-N-Ride service, also known as the green bus. Visit http://www.rtd-denver.com/callNRide.shtml for more information.