Ride-sharing services such as Uber and Lyft have become very popular. They differ from standard taxi services, but for many, those differences are the reason why they prefer ride-sharing. Whether you like using them or not, Uber and Lyft are often very convenient. However, there are some dangers of using these services. Here are some of the things you should be aware of before you call an Uber to pick you up.
Ride-Share Drivers Differ from Taxi Drivers
While there are some qualifications you must meet to be a ride-share driver, they aren’t trained like professional taxi drivers are. Essentially, anyone with an acceptable vehicle who can pass this questionnaire is qualified to drive for Uber and Lyft. There are some training guides, of course, and they do background checks. These drivers are free to set their own schedules and essentially work however much they want. While there are rules they must follow, there’s also little accountability, especially if passengers do not leave reviews or share their feedback with the company.
Their Vehicles Aren’t Routinely Inspected
Everyone who drives for Uber or Lyft has to have a vehicle that meets their requirements. However, the company doesn’t provide any sort of maintenance, nor does it require drivers to get their vehicles inspected or maintained regularly. The overall condition of the vehicle isn’t checked, either, nor is there always a way to verify what the driver submits to the company. This means you may get into a vehicle that breaks down while you’re in it, which could cause an accident.
They May Not Be Good Drivers
You do run the risk of getting in a car with a bad driver when you use Uber of Lyft. These drivers do not have to take any kind of test to show that they are good behind the wheel. As long as they have no criminal record or large number of traffic violations, they can drive for a ride-sharing company. You may find your driver drives much too fast or doesn’t always obey traffic signs.
What to do in an Accident
If your Uber or Lyft gets in a car accident while you are a passenger, you should do everything you would do after any accident. Make certain you are okay, move to a safe place, and help anyone who was injured. However, in addition to calling the police and emergency medical services, you also need to call the ride-sharing company. Let them know what happened and give them all of your contact details. These companies do carry insurance that covers any passengers who were in the vehicle. You will want to communicate often with the company, especially if you were injured and have medical bills. If it was the driver’s fault, the company they were driving for may cover your costs. If they don’t, the driver’s personal auto insurance should.
What Can You Do to Ensure a Safe Ride?
If you need to make use of a ride-sharing company, there are a few things you can do to make your ride safer. While you can’t necessarily choose your driver, you can reject the driver once you’ve been matched with someone and can view their feedback. You will need to cancel within five minutes, though, to avoid a cancellation fee. Also, if you leave negative feedback, you will not be matched with that driver again. You can block drivers from seeing your ride requests, but you may have to contact the company to do so.