BROWARD COUNTY (CBSMiami) — Starting Friday, some taxi and limo drivers in Broward County will be trained as an extra set of eyes and ears for the Broward Sheriff’s Office (BSO).
BSO is joining forces with Yellow Cab and the Taxicab, Limousine & Paratransit Association (TLPA) to launch the new Transportation On Patrol (TOP) program.
The TOP program is modeled after a similar initiative in Denver that scored several successes during its first year of operation.
The program will kick off at Port Everglades with the first training session Friday afternoon, according to the Sheriff’s Office.
A statement from the BSO says the port was chosen because of its high volume of cabs and limos and the fact that it’s the world’s busiest cruise passenger port and is a major hub for cargo and fuel, all combining to make it a potential target for terrorism.
Once a driver is trained he will get a TOP sticker for his cab or limo. Drivers will be instructed to dial 911 if they see emergencies, which would include a crime in progress, a fire, a person having a heart attack, a serious crash or accident, etc.
For non-emergencies, such as unusual activity or a disabled vehicle, cab drivers will have a list of contact numbers to call.
The program will be expanded beyond Port Everglades in coming months, and is not the first program of its kind in Miami.
According to the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, the Sheriff’s Office partnered with Waste Management in March to train more than 225 trash haulers to help watch for crimes throughout Broward County.