Support after no-show taxi

An organization has come forward to help a Kelowna family after a terminally ill man was stuck in his wheelchair without his medication for more than four hours when a taxi failed to show up.

People in Motion, a Kelowna organization, says it has an accessible van loan program that can prevent such issues from happening.

Donna Choboter said she called Kelowna Cabs at 11 a.m. on June 23 to have a taxi pick up and return her husband, Brian, to Cottonwoods Care Centre.

Brian had recently become paraplegic and hadn’t been able to visit home in six months.

The wheelchair accessible vehicle was supposed to pick him up and drive him to Cottonwoods at 8:30 p.m., but it never showed up.

The family finally ended up calling an ambulance, and he got back to Cottonwoods about midnight. 

People in Motion executive director Louise Abbott says she doesn’t ever want to read another story like this.

“I thought OK, that is ridiculous. We don’t need to have that happen here, I’ll let her know what we do,” said Abbott. “It’s heartbreaking.”

Family members or individuals can join by purchasing a membership for $10 and then borrow the vehicle for a day or two.

“If you are a member of the society, we can lend the van to a family member to take them to an appointment or a special occasion,” she said.

Donna said the outpouring of support has been overwhelming, and she hopes no other family has to go through what happened to them.

One Castanet reader even offered to chip in a few dollars for their ambulance bill.

Kelowna Cabs investigated the incident and says it was a matter of miscommunication.

For more information on the accessible van loan program and People in Motion, visit this link.

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