Tipsy Taxi still keeping Aspen-area roads safe |

Tipsy Taxi still keeping Aspen-area roads safe

Dec. 16, 1983, was the first day of operation of Tipsy Taxi. Since then, there has been uninterrupted service — 24 hours a day, 365 days a year — for 35 years. It is a safety net, a last resort, for anyone who has no other way to avoid getting behind the wheel after drinking. As a rookie deputy sheriff in 1982, I believed it appropriate for peace officers to keep the driving public safer not only by removing drunk drivers by arrest, but — even better — to give every potential drunk driver a better choice. Take a free ride home. I proposed this crime-prevention program to then-sheriff Dick Kienast who told me, “I don’t think it will work, but I won’t stop you.”

The rest is history. And no tax dollars have been used for the rides.

Tipsy Taxi would not be possible without the existence of a 24-hour-a-day taxi service, which has been High Mountain Taxi for decades. Kudos and thanks to the dedicated drivers. It also depends on the cooperation of bartenders who arrange for the rides. Thanks go to them for giving tens of thousands of safe rides over the years. And, of course, peace officers always deserve our thanks for all they do, including traffic safety.

Although I am now long-retired from the Sheriff’s Office, I am honored to still run this life-saving program. If you find yourself in Aspen with no other way to get home safely, ask any bartender or peace officer for a free Tipsy Taxi ride home. Take a ride, don’t take a chance.

Ellen W. Anderson

Woody Creek

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Aspen and Snowmass Village make the Aspen Times’ work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.


Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User

Letter to the Editor