THE MOTHER OF a nut-allergic boy has criticised a Liverpool taxi driver who followed her into a hospital to demand more money after her child suffered a potential life-threatening reaction.
Joanne McColgan hailed a cab at the Whitechapel rank in the centre of Liverpool after her 12 year old son Ethan suffered an allergic reaction to drinking a milkshake.
Ethan complained that he was struggling to breathe during the journey and was sick into a bag in the back of the taxi.
Some of the vomit fell onto the floor of the cab and the taxi driver followed the mother and son into the Royal Liverpool Hospital to demand an extra £25 soiling charge.
Ms McColgan said:
This was a potentially life-threatening situation and this guy totally ignored that. I always carry my son’s medication and he has a three-step plan for when it happens. But I knew we had to quickly get him to a hospital.
“I knew we could get to the Royal within five to ten minutes if we got a taxi. I told the driver that I didn’t have all the fare on me, but that I would get the money from a cashpoint when we arrived. He said he would pull up on the way but I said, ‘Please, just take us to the Royal’.
“Then he stopped at a cash machine. I said, ‘My son is potentially dying here,’ and he said, ‘Listen love, I’m a taxi driver, I need to be paid’.
“When we got to the A&E I told the receptionist that I had to go and pay the taxi driver the rest of the fare. But when I turned round, he was already standing there.
“He said, ‘Here love, you owe me £25.’ My son had been sick because of the reaction to the steroid I had given him and a tiny bit had slipped onto the cab floor.
“I couldn’t believe that my son was potentially dying and that he was following me into the hospital for money. It was absolutely awful.”
A Liverpool City Council spokesman said:
We are very concerned when complaints such as this are raised and we will investigate the allegations.