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October 15, 2010

Taxis in Accra

Another complicating factor driving in Accra (see initial post on this treacherous activity) is the vehicles that are broken down on the road. Very often the cause of a traffic jam is a disabled vehicle in the road. Surprisingly quite a few of those vehicles are old Mercedes (hope I don’t get sued but it is true). Another 70 percent, however, are taxis.

Driver tries to revive his broken down taxi while the passenger waits in the front seat

I must admit that I have never jumped into a taxi in Accra. I make it a point not to take public transportation when it is quicker to walk. It is quite common to see taxis broken down with the passenger waiting while the driver tries to revive the engine.

Yesterday I was in a traffic jam. When we finally arrived at the point of the source of the problem we were not surprised to see a disabled taxi. The amazing thing was that the taxi was being pushed by a Caucasian man. The poor fellow had been a passenger in the cab, but now, he was pushing while the driver was steering the car. As we watched, the passenger got the car off to a running start and then ran alongside and jumped in.

I hope he got a discount on the fare!

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