If you live in an area where Lyft and Uber are available, they are a great way to get around. They can save money on gas and car repairs, as well as provide a safe way to travel around cities. However, rideshare is not without its risks. In 2018, Uber reported 3,045 cases of sexual assault.
So just how safe is ridesharing and how can you mitigate the risks when using ridesharing services.
Is It Safe to Rideshare?
While the incidents involving rideshare are highly publicized, for the most part, ridesharing is safe. Yes, Uber reported 3,045 cases of sexual assault in 2018. But about half of those were cases where the driver was the victim of the assault.
Uber also reported 58 auto-related fatalities and 9 murders. Uber reported approximately 1.13 billion rides during this period. So whilst the risks are real, the numbers suggest most riders will be safe.
But just because the odds are in your favor does not mean you should not be taking steps to protect yourself.
The technology in ridesharing apps has a lot of safety precautions built into them. Most importantly your ride is tracked live. You can see exactly where you are and where your driver should be going on your phone.
If something were to go wrong, there is a record of who the driver was and when and where it happened. Here are some other tips to ensure you are safe when ridesharing.
Always Ask “What Is My Name?”
One of the biggest risks is getting into the wrong car. Before you get into any car ask the driver to tell you your own name. They will have your name from your lift request. If they cannot tell you your name, they are not your driver.
You should also verify the driver and vehicle. Make sure the vehicle and registration match what is in your app. Ask your driver for their name and make sure their name and appearance match the app.
Use The Trip Sharing Feature
Both Uber and Lyft have trip-sharing features that allow you to share your trip with a friend or family member. Once you share your trip the person you share with can keep an eye on you and call the police if you don’t arrive or something else strange happens.
It is important to remember to tell your driver you are sharing your trip. It might seem rude but you want your driver to know that someone else is watching them. People are less likely to commit crimes if they think they will get caught.
Make a Phone Call
It is also never a bad idea to make a phone call whilst in the rideshare. This way the driver will know someone will be aware if something goes wrong. Just make sure you are keeping an eye on your rideshare app and that the trip is on the correct route.
Other Saftey Apps
Apps, like the IWitness app, turn your phone into a personal security system with an alarm, security camera, and emergency calls to 911 with just a shake. If you do fall victim you will want to contact Uber accident lawyers.
Whilst the likelihood of falling victim to a crime whilst in rideshare is low, the volume of ridesharing means that thousands of Americans will be victims each year. If something feels off, then it probably is.
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