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A new Uber safety report shows why some people distrust rideshare drivers

Philadelphia auto accident attorney

The rideshare platform is hailed as a convenient and inexpensive way for commuters to get from point A to point B. We have them all over Philadelphia, as well as other parts of Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

A small handful of rideshare drivers, however, have tarnished the rideshare industry with an underlying distrust.

In December 2019, a teenager was physically assaulted by a Lyft driver, according to NBC Philadelphia. The teenager reportedly asked the driver to stop texting and driving and to turn down loud music. The driver then stopped the car and told the passenger to get out. When the passenger announced that she was filming the incident, the driver attacked her.

The passenger opted not to pursue compensation from Lyft, but rather, urged the company to do a better job at screening its drivers.

New Uber safety report reveals how dangerous rideshares can be

Uber recently released its U.S. Safety Report, which shares data regarding safety incidents. In the report, Uber examines data from 2017-2018. During this period, an average of 3.1 trips occurred daily across the United States. According to the data compiled in the report:

  • Fatal crashes: There were 97 fatal crashes involving Uber cars, resulting in 107 fatalities.
    • 90 percent happened in urban areas.
    • 30 percent involved pedestrians.
    • 21 percent of those killed were Uber drivers, 21 percent were Uber passengers, the rest were third parties.
    • 8 percent of the Uber passengers or drivers were killed while outside the car.
    • 2 percent involved bicyclists.
  • Fatal physical assaults: 19 people were killed due to violent assaults.
    • 8 were riders using the Uber platform.
    • 7 were Uber drivers.
    • 4 were third parties.
  • Sexual assaults: Incidents of sexual assault included:
    • Non-consensual kissing of a non-sexual body part was reported in about 1 in every 2,000,000 completed trips.
    • Non-consensual kissing of a sexual body part was reported in about 1 in every 3,000,000 completed trips.
    • Attempted non-consensual sexual penetration was reported in about 1 in every 4,000,000 completed trips.
    • Non-consensual sexual penetration was reported in about 1 in every 5,000,000 completed trips.
    • Non-consensual touching of a sexual body part was reported in about 1 in every 800,000 completed trips.

What to do if injured by an Uber driver or while using the platform

If you were injured in a crash involving an Uber driver, your legal options may depend on what the driver was doing at the time of the incident. Here is how insurance coverage works for rideshare companies under Pennsylvania law:

  • The rideshare driver is logged out of the app: The driver's personal insurance provider would pay for the damages.
  • The driver is logged into the app and waiting for a ride request: The rideshare company's insurance provider would pay for the damages. The company must provide insurance coverage of $50,000 for death or bodily injury per person, $100,000 for death or bodily injury per incident, and $25,000 for property damage.
  • The driver is transporting a passenger: Liability coverage of $1,000,000 must be provided by the company.

If you were injured or sustained trauma due to a violent assault or sexual misconduct committed by a rideshare driver, you may be able to take legal action against the company.

Pennsylvania and New Jersey residents who use rideshares should be able to trust that the drivers will behave in a safe and professional manner. When they fail to do so, they should be held accountable. To find out how you can take legal action, contact the attorneys at Villari, Brandes & Giannone, P.C. We have law offices in Conshohocken and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, as well as Marlton, New Jersey.

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