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Are Ridesharing Companies Really Safe?

Oct 29, 2021 - Easton Car Accident Lawyer

The taxi-alternative services provided by Uber and Lyft are rapidly growing in popularity. Some of the reasons for this explosion in popularity include:

  • The increased costs of vehicle ownership
  • The increased usage of smartphones and the internet
  • The increased presence of ridesharing vehicles
  • More rigorous CO2 reduction targets

However, along with the increased popularity of ridesharing comes an increase in the dangers.

If you have been injured in a ridesharing accident, let an experienced Easton car accident lawyer at Drake, Hileman & Davis help you with your insurance and legal claims. The technology surrounding ridesharing is rapidly changing, and new laws are being enacted to keep up with the technology.

Is Ridesharing Safe?

Millions of rides are given by Uber and Lyft drivers each day and the overwhelming majority of these rides are safe and incident-free. Nonetheless, safety is a primary concern for both ridesharing riders and drivers, so these companies are constantly adding new safety features.

According to Uber’s 2019 safety report, there were 58 fatalities, 3,045 sexual assaults, and nine fatal physical assaults reported in the U.S. in 2018. As a result, Uber has developed new safety features and programs.

Lyft has also recently introduced over a dozen new safety features, including a PIN verification system to help riders be sure they’re getting into the right vehicle. Riders can also contact emergency services through the Uber app.

What Are the Most Common Risks Associated with Ridesharing?

Any form of vehicle transportation carries a certain amount of risk. Nonetheless, there are certain risks that are specific to ridesharing, for both riders and drivers, including: 

Riders

  • Accidents. It has been estimated that ridesharing may cause a two-to-three percent increase in fatal car accidents.
  • Driver impersonation. Riders may mistakenly get into a car with someone who is impersonating an actual ridesharing driver.
  • Bad drivers. Ridesharing companies try to avoid using drivers with poor driving scores, but this is a slow process, and it requires the driver to receive low scores on a consistent basis.

Drivers

  • Low-rated passengers. Many drivers feel financial pressure to accept even low-rated passengers. Uber has started prohibiting picking up riders with low ratings, but the effectiveness of this policy has not been confirmed. 
  • Unpredictable passengers. Drivers have no way of knowing who exactly they are picking up, which is inherently risky, especially late at night when passengers are more likely to have been drinking. An aggressive passenger may lead to unanticipated physical altercations.
  • Road safety. Car crashes are among the most common causes of death in the U.S. Of course, the more often you drive, the higher your risk will be.
  • Insurance gaps. Drivers’ personal auto insurance may not fully cover their damages if they are in an accident while driving commercially, and the standard insurance provided by Uber and Lyft covers the various stages of their shifts differently. You may find yourself without any insurance coverage if you get into an accident during certain stages of your shift.

Let an Easton Car Accident Lawyer Help if You’ve Been Involved in a Ridesharing Accident

Insurance policies and the laws surrounding ridesharing are still evolving. If you have been involved in a ridesharing accident, an Easton car accident lawyer at Drake, Hileman & Davis can help you understand the law and handle your insurance and legal claims for you. Contact us for a same-day response to schedule your free consultation.

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