Pedicab drivers on high alert after recent robberies

Pedicab drivers on high alert after recent robberies

(WVUE) - More than just transportation, pedicabs are an experience, especially for tourists.

Yet, recently, the pedicab drivers have had more to worry about than just making money, after a driver was robbed at gunpoint, Friday night. It's the second one in less than a month.

"Everybody's been really busy," said pedicab driver Clyde Bates, who waited for his next fare outside of Voodoo Fest.

He's ready to work until sunrise, if the fares keep coming. But for Bates, being prepared isn't just about having the energy to bike all night.

"I have a police baton tonight, some people have pepper spray, some people have tasers," he said.

Pedicab drivers, like Bates, are on their guard after recent robberies.

Police say a passenger robbed a driver at gunpoint, September 30th, near Kerlerec and Dauphine. Then another reported robbery, Friday night, near North Johnson and Esplanade. That's where police say a man stole a driver's fanny pack.

They say, when the driver went after the man, he pulled out a gun and shot at her.

"That's been getting a little out of hand and we're all kind of worried about it," Bates said.

Aside from arming themselves, Bates says he and other drivers are taking precautions.

"The main thing that we all do is drop your cash regularly," said Bates.

It means you won't find big bucks on any driver, even on a busy night.

Though they're on alert, drivers like Bates say they love what they do and don't plan on slowing down because of crooks.

"You can be struck by lightning anywhere, you can't just stay inside all the time," said Bates.

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