How common are sexual assaults in Uber?
You’ve heard the Uber claims and Uber lawsuit horror-stories – an uber driver picks up a female passenger and inappropriate behavior ensues – from an unwanted touching to rape. This has much to do with the claim / opinion of some, that Uber runs substandard background checks on their drivers. In fairness to Uber and Lyft, I haven’t heard of very many of these sexual assault type of stories recently. It appears that Uber is taking the safety of their passengers more seriously – especially with more app users utilizing the uberpool feature. But this is of little consolation to those who have been violated by a Lyft or Uber driver.
There is a website: https://www.whosdrivingyou.org/rideshare-incidents, run by the Taxi and Limousine Trade Association. This anti-ridesharing site would have you believe that illegal and offensive behavior is fairly commonplace among Uber drivers in the United States.
A closer examination shows that rape, groping and other sexually-deviant behavior certainly occurs in both Lyft and Uber. Although a single incident is too many, it appears that the occurrence is fairly rare in the US and worldwide. Realistically, it’s impossible for companies such as Uber and Lyft to eliminate the behavior of a few bad apples. However, I believe they should be doing more stringent background checks to filter out potential dangerous rideshare drivers as much as possible. Luckily Lyft and Uber may not have a choice due to the passage of a new lyft / uber related law – HB 221. Although, there are certainly critics of HB 221 because they remove city’s in Florida the ability to make their own rules, this Uber/Lyft accident attorney is pleased with the new insurance and safety requirements that will hopefully protect more Uber and Lyft passengers. Some of the new Lyft and Uber regulations in Florida are discussed here.
Is Uberpool safe – does Uberpool increase the chances of sexual assault in Uber?
If you are unfamiliar with “UberPOOL,” Uberpool takes ridesharing to another level. Uberpool makes riding in a Uber even cheaper if you are comfortable sharing your uber car with other passengers/strangers. But does using uberpool make a sexual assault in an Uber car more likely?
It’s easy to see how this feature can make driving in an uber slightly more dangerous. Only because it adds an unknown element to the mix. Uber accident claims and Uber lawsuits are more likely at night, coming to or from a bar or nightclub, and uberpool is used. Adding another stranger (or strangers) to the ride means its more likely that the passenger is drunk or high. The more drugs and alcohol involved, even if the uber driver is stone-cold sober, means that there is more for the uber driver to worry about and more likelihood of unwanted antics that would distract the uber driver from concentrating on providing a safe ride.
The increasing popularity of uberpool, I believe is why Uber has updated its terms and conditions: Uber has banned back-seat flirting and back-seat touching.
Although I’m not sure that potential attackers are consulting with Uber’s terms and conditions before attempting sexual assault in Uber, I certainly don’t fault Uber for taking a position. I also think it shows Uber implicitly acknowledging that there is an increased risk of sexual assault in Uber cars driving on behalf of Uber pool.
So now ride-sharing passengers have a difficult choice to make. Use UberPOOL and worry about unwanted touching by fellow ride-sharing passengers, or use UberX and worry about unwanted touching or sexual assault by the Uber (or Lyft) driver. While risk may be relatively minimal, Lyft or Uber should be held responsible if they played a role in the incident especially by negligently screening Uber drivers.
If you or a loved one was physically or sexually attacked by an Uber or Lyft driver or other Uber/Lyft passengers, speak to an uber claims and uber lawsuit attorney as soon as possible. Call 786.220.5588 – 24/7. Evening and weekend appointments available.
Uber Car Accident Attorney Resources
- Uber Safety Tips