ONLY ON 3: Taxi driver using social media to bring awareness to impaired driving

PENDER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — A taxi driver in Hampstead is raising awareness about impaired driving on a highway notorious for accidents.

Taxi driver Jeremy Cooper takes video of people almost hitting cars, hitting curbs, and going in between the lines.
Those drivers on Highway 17 in Pender County are one of the reasons Cooper said he started his business in Hampstead four years ago.

“Hampstead didn’t have a taxi business and we have three bars here in town, so I figured, if we could keep the roads safe, I would be here for them,” Cooper said.

Ever since then, Cooper has been posting these videos on Facebook and warning people against impaired driving.

“I believe that if you take drinking and driving and mix social media with it, you might stop drinking and driving all together,” Cooper said.

He hopes these videos scare people out of driving impaired.

“Because they’ll think someone is behind them taking video of them and they’re going to put it on social media,” Cooper said. “Now, it’s a shame thing, but it could save lives.”

Cooper said he also calls police when he sees concerning drivers. Pender County Sheriff’s deputies said, if you call about a specific driver, they will go to that area, but they cannot do anything unless they see that driver making a violation.

Cooper said a taxi ride with him is much cheaper than a DWI.

“Ten bucks compared to $5,000,” Cooper said.

It may be part of a business model, but it is a business cooper hopes is saving lives.

“I’d rather people call me if they are going to be impaired,” Cooper said.

Categories: Local, Pender