Taking an Uber after a late night out might be safer than driving home under the influence, but that does not mean your safety is a guarantee. While rideshare offers an enticing way to ride, it can also come with risks. Unfortunately, there have been hundreds of reports since the advent of Uber (and Lyft) of drivers being guilty of assault, sexual assault, robbery, kidnapping and reckless driving. Use these tips to improve your safety on your next Uber ride.
Utilize Uber’s Safety Tools
Many riders don’t know that the Uber app itself has easy-to-access safety tools. In your account settings, there is a safety checkup menu where you can choose trusted contacts to quickly share your location with, receive automatic notifications if your ride goes off course and require a PIN verification from your driver to make sure you get into the right car every time. You can also set the app up to call your trusted contact automatically in case of an emergency.
Wait Someplace Safe
Don’t wait until you’re already outside or standing by the road to call your Uber. Instead, call the ride while you’re still inside. Wait for your driver someplace safe and secure, preferably with a friend or family member.
Double Check Your Ride
When the app notifies you that your driver has arrived, check the make and model of the vehicle and the license plate numbers to make sure you’re getting into the correct car. Match the driver photo that’s provided in the app with the person behind the wheel. Never get into a vehicle if the driver or car doesn’t match what is being displayed in the app. Have the driver confirm the ride with your name and/or PIN, as well.
Share Your Trip
The Uber app gives you a convenient way to share your trip and exact location with people of your choice. Utilize these tools so that someone you trust knows exactly where you are, who you’re with and when you’re supposed to arrive at your destination at all times.
Don’t Give Personal Details
If you’re paired with a talkative driver, be careful not to give him or her any of your personal information. It can be dangerous to give away too much, such as your exact apartment number, your relationship status, whether you live alone, and if your home will be empty while you’re on vacation. If you need to contact your driver for any reason, only do so through the app to ensure your privacy.
In the most recent year that Uber safety data is available, Uber reported nearly 3,000 incidents of sexual assault (including sexual assaults against Uber drivers) during rides. Stay alert and awake during your ride. If you feel unsafe, call someone to let them know where you are and who you’re with. Make sure the driver hears you. Don’t be afraid to call the police if you feel it is an emergency.
Practice Vehicle Safety
Sexual assault isn’t the only safety risk in an Uber or Lyft – you are also at risk of getting into a motor vehicle accident. In 2017 and 2018, there were 107 deaths reported in connection to the Uber app. Improve your personal safety by choosing a position in the back seat. Always wear a seat belt and try not to distract the Uber driver. If you notice any dangerous or negligent driving practices, you can file a complaint against the driver through the app.
Injured in an Uber Accident? Contact an Attorney for Advice
If you suffer bodily harm, property damage or become a victim of a crime during an Uber ride in Arizona, you have legal rights. Discuss your options for filing a lawsuit against Uber or another party with an attorney as soon as possible to demand financial compensation. The Law Offices of John Phebus offers free rideshare accident case consultations, where you can speak to a Peoria Uber/Lyft accident attorney – not just a staff member – and tell your story. Contact us today to schedule your case review.