The New York Times explains why in detail, but in short: the verified 20% dip in operating cabs during rush hour (from the previous hour) is due to the following:
- The traditional hour for cabs to change shifts is from 4 to 5pm. This is the shift-change hour because anything earlier would require a day driver to start his 12-hour shifts in the wee hours of the morning, and anything later weights evening shift cabbies too much in the slow-business of late-night revelers.
- Drivers started going off duty between 4 and 4:30 p.m., to ensure that they had enough time to make it to the garage; even today, tardy cabbies can be hit with a $30 fine.
Fiiiiine. If we must wait out a cab by
binge after-work drinking in a bar for an hour two hours, we’ll do it. For the greater good!