O&A Masthead

Nevada Ramblings —
February 2006

Columnist — Carolyn Bishop

Las Vegas Metro Police are taking the high price of gas seriously. In fact, their new motto could well be "To protect and conserve." Officers are now allowed to "shop around" for the best gas prices rather than purchasing fuel directly from stations in the area they serve.

Also, they are urged to buy gasoline whenever they see a good price rather than waiting until their fuel gauge is near empty.

Officers are now instructed to turn off the engine when they are handling a call or doing paperwork. During the winter months this means giving up warmth in order to conserve fuel.

Carolyn Bishop Headshot

In case you are wondering if those officers who are lying in wait to catch you speeding are risking frost bite or worse, don't worry — they are allowed to keep their engines humming. After all, they never have to wait more than a minute to spot a speeder.

Taxicabs in Las Vegas average 100,000-miles-a-year. Thinking of the price of gasoline and all the emissions released into the air, Jason Awad, owner of Lucky Cab Co., has added another first to his cab business.

A while back, he defied tradition and added small cars to his fleet. Now, he has made a another "non-traditional" move. He's added hybrid Toyota Prius cars to his fleet. "So far, so good," he says.

His main problem is the limited truck space for all of the luggage Las Vegas visitors bring with them.

While the Prius, when used as a cab, doesn't perform at its touted rate of 60 miles per gallon, it does show a fuel efficiency rate of 35 to 40 miles per gallon. Awad figures that over the course of a year, a Prius would save $15,775 in gasoline costs compared with a Marquis and nearly $7,884 versus a Camry.

There is a downside. How much is it going to cost for maintenance? While Lucky Cab mechanics know how much it costs to fix a Camry, for instance, the cost of repairs on a Prius is not known.

The Taxicab Authority is supportive. However, Nevada is not among the states who currently supply some incentive for using hybrids and alternative-fuel cars.

The bottom line is that no longer are people laughing at the idea of powering cars with electricity or "french-fry grease." Even better, the constantly growing city of Las Vegas will be a safer place environmentally for our children and grandchildren.

Originally published in the February 2006 issue of the O&A Marketing News.
Copyright 2006 by KAL Publications Inc.

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