St. Patrick Day “Tipsy Taxi” Service

Happy St. Patrick Day!  I am sure most people in Baltimore will be celebrating this holiday by going out to a bar or restaurant and having a few drinks.  Why not have a little fun, right?  It is important to remember to not drink and drive though.  You not only endanger yourself when driving intoxicated but fellow drivers and passengers on the road.  If you are going out tonight you might want to remember to call the “Tipsy Taxi.”

What is the Tipsy Taxi?  It is a collaboration between the American Automobile Association (AAA) and Yellow Cab that tries to keep drunk drivers off the road on holidays that usually involve consuming large amounts of alcohol.  To help with St Patrick's Day celebrations they are offering the service tonight.

That means on St. Patrick Day, Saturday March 17th, between from 4 pm – 4 am anyone who is at a Baltimore city restaurant or bar can call (#1-877-963-TAXI) and get a Free Ride home.

There are a few restrictions to using Tipsy Taxi though.  You must 21-years-old and need to live in the Baltimore metro area.  The taxi rides are Free but after $50 bucks, the rest of the ride is on you.  Still it is a pretty sweet deal and a good idea to keep intoxicated drivers off the road.

Supposedly the Tipsy Taxi line is busiest between 12 am – 2:30 am.  So keep that in mind if you call then.   Remember if you are drinking tonight please call the Tipsy Taxi number #1-877-963-TAXI.

Have fun and stay safe!

Stranded by AAA

Last Tuesday I was driving home, on a busy city street, when my engine suddenly shut-off…. in the middle of the road. None of the car electronics were working.   I tried to start the car many times, but to no avail.  Unfortunately…. it was a dead battery!

It's good to try to avoid this situation.  You should get your battery tested every so often. Your mechanic or local auto parts store should have specialized testing equipment to determine whether a battery is good or bad.  How can you determine whether you have a bad battery?  Usually when your battery starts to produce white corrosive material around the battery terminals and contacts, it tends to be a sign the battery is starting to go. My battery was producing white corrosion a lot, and no amount of cleaning was keeping it from coming back.  Batteries also tend to smell pungent.  If it smells like rotten-eggs around your battery or when your hood is open, you have a bad battery.  Batteries tend to last about 3-5 years.  If your battery is over 3 years old, definitely get it tested every couple months to ensure you don't get stranded.

The annoying thing is AAA tested this battery tested 2 weeks earlier, and said it was “Fine.” Since it was an AAA branded battery with a 3-year warranty, you can get a replacement if defective.  While questioning a representative on what criteria is needed to replace a battery the statement was “We will replace a battery if it has a bad cell or is defective.” They gave me the usual corporate runaround about policies and procedures, but provided no real information.  It seems AAA doesn't want to give you a new battery unless it's absolutely necessary.

I got my car towed to where I work.  We promptly tested the battery, and obviously it was no good.  So I put in a new one and was back on the road.

Don't listen to AAA for advice about vehicle maintenance.  It’s better to be cautious, and change a battery when it shows signs of wear.  I learned this the hard way by getting stranded in busy traffic.  These roadside assistance clubs are for towing, not auto repair advice.