MORGANTOWN - It's no secret that West Virginia University students like to go out and have a good time.
The student body's insatiable thirst and penchant for partying have made the school a mainstay on many "Top Party School" lists - such as the ones published by the Princeton Review and Playboy Magazine.
To help combat the dangerous side effects of WVU's alcohol-centric culture - like DUI charges, drunken driving-related automotive accidents and sexual assault - a new local service is making sure students and residents of the Morgantown area have a safe, reliable way to get home at the end of the night.
Dub V Safe Ride, which was founded by WVU alumnus Eric Watkins in April, is a unique taxi service offering its users two different ways to stay off the roads when they've had a few too many.
Potential passengers can register for the service on the company's website, but becoming a member is not necessary to use the service. Members receive deals and discounts, according to the website.
Passengers can either schedule their pick-ups ahead of time or simply call the service about 20 minutes before they're ready to leave.
If the customer walked to wherever he or she became intoxicated, a driver in one of the company's three cars will pick up the customer and drive him or her to a designated destination.
If the customer drove his or her own car and is now legally incapable of driving it, a Dub V Safe Ride employee will arrive on one of the company's two miniature scooters. The scooters are foldable and can be
collapsed to fit inside the customer's car, which will then be driven by the employee. After arriving at the passenger's home, the employee will hop back on the scooter and head off to the next location.
Dub V Safe Ride manager Grant Blaisdell, 23, of Keyser, said the service charges a $10 flat pick-up fee in the standard service area and then $3 a mile. At that rate, passengers can ask to be taken to anywhere in Morgantown or the surrounding area.