People who live in Carlisle, Cumberland County now have no access to taxicab services. AAAA Moonlight Taxi Cab Company, the only company servicing the area, abruptly shut down, leaving many literally stranded.
There are plenty of cabs packed outside the Moonlight Taxi Company at 23 Gasoline Alley in Middlesex Township, Cumberland County, but the business is deserted and has been for weeks. Carlisle Mayor Tim Scott said he became aware of the problem January 2nd.
“Some friends of mine anecdotally had told me, that they’ve been trying to call our taxi service for the past two weeks, between Christmas and New Year’s, and all they were getting was a very fast busy signal,” Scott said.
He said the sudden closure even has the potential to affect people’s health.
“An e-mail was forwarded to me from a constituent who was very concerned because his wife uses the taxi service for medical appointments,” he said. “They didn’t know what they’re going to do.”
In a town with very limited access to public transportation, losing the only taxi service is a hardship for many.
“The bus only runs from here to Harrisburg, so it’s not like you’re getting anywhere that way,” said Nikitta McDonald, a mom of three, who has used the taxi service in the past.
McDonald and her kids walk or take the bus as often as possible, but some trips just require a car.
“To like the grocery store, or the laundromat or something like that,” she said.
Mayor Scott contacted the state’s Public Utility Commission, which regulates taxicab services. The PUC plans to file a compliant against Moonlight’s owner for abandonment of service. Meanwhile, Scott is gauging the interest of other companies to fill the void.
“It’s very important because it’s not just the borough, which is 18,500 people, it’s also the surrounding townships,” he said. “You double and triple that and there are folks that could use a taxi service.”
The mayor said he has heard from someone who has filed permits to get a new taxicab service up and running, but the approval process can take at least a month.