Uber’s main objective is to provide safe trips to its riders. In order to achieve this, the rideshare company reviews applications to find qualified Uber rideshare drivers.
During the application process, multiple questions are asked to the candidate in order to get an idea on whether they are eligible to become an Uber rideshare driver. Candidates who have been approved will be granted the authority to take riders on trips.
Each year a rideshare driver will be asked to undergo a background check. Uber does this to confirm whether a driver has gotten any added points to their driving record or committed any crimes. If illegal actions have been detected, the rideshare company will let go of the driver as they are now seen as a risk to Uber riders.
Although Uber established rules to prevent its riders from encountering unsafe drivers, flaws within its system has allowed several of its drivers to take advantage of riders or carelessly place riders in dangerous situations. Sexual assault ranks as one of the top uber rider fears. This number is increased even more when dealing with the female demographic.
According to Uber’s 2022 safety report, 91 fatal motor vehicle accidents, 3,824 sexual assaults, and 19 physical assaults have occurred in 2019 and 2020. News media outlets also continue to release reports of riders who have had the unpleasant experience of dealing with a negligent Uber driver. Our knowledgeable Uber and Lyft accident attorneys will discuss these cases more in depth in the sections below.
If you were involved in an Uber or Lyft accident or were sexually or physically assaulted by an Uber driver, you may be eligible to file a personal injury claim against them. At West Coast Trial Lawyers, we will assess your case to determine what necessary steps to take in order to help get you the justice you deserve.
Uber Assault Cases
Whenever an Uber-related issue is reported in the United States or Canada, it is sent directly to their Phoenix downtown office where over 130 customer service employees focus solely on safety investigations. Whether a report comes in through the company website, safety hotline, social media, or any other contact, Uber uses algorithms to check for trigger words such as “knife” or “fight.”
Once a claim is made, Uber shuts down the incriminated account and immediately contacts the owner. Both accounts may be deactivated at this time in order to preserve public safety.
Urgent cases are sent to a smaller team of investigators. This smaller team first reviews the accused party’s record for complaints and bad reviews. At this point, the accused may submit any evidence to defend themselves, such as video footage or GPS data.
Depending on the claim, the case may be directed to upper management for further review when permanent deactivation is the decision made by a group of investigators.
Strangely, Uber does not report sexual misconduct cases to the police. However, it will contact the authorities if the incident involved physical harm or was a threat to public safety.
Cases may take days to resolve, but Uber prides itself on a quick response time and claims that 80 percent of complaints are addressed within the hour.
There are a plethora of examples when it comes to physical assault in an Uber. Whether it has to do with drunken riders or an inappropriate driver, physical altercations happen. In order to protect its drivers and riders, Uber has created a system built within the app. Some features included in this system are:
Sexual assaults are the most common type of assault cases that occur within an Uber. This is due to the fact that intoxicated riders are the most vulnerable to predators who could very well be Uber drivers. According to a CNN investigation, there have been at least 103 Uber drivers in the United States that have been accused of sexual assault in the past four years.
Regardless of safety measures, including Uber’s Unaccompanied Minor Policy, some of these cases even involve underaged individuals. Uber, alongside the National Sexual Violence Resource Center and Urban Institute, have separated these incidents into sexual misconduct and sexual assault. Sexual assault implies sexual contact or behavior toward a victim, while sexual misconduct is more of a broad term that describes any unwelcome sexual behavior.
Below, we have created a table that indicates what actions fall under sexual misconduct and sexual assault.
Staring or leering
Attempted touching of a nonsexual body part
Inappropriate comments or questions
Attempted kissing of a nonsexual body part
Comments about someone’s appearance
Attempting to touch a sexual body part
Attempting to kiss a sexual body part
Non-consensual touching of a nonsexual body part
Displaying indecent material
Non-consensual kissing of a nonsexual body part
Indecent photography without consent
Attempting non-consensual sexual penetration
Soliciting sexual content
Non-consensual touching of a sexual body part
Masturbation or indecent exposure
Non-consensual kissing of a sexual body part
Verbal threat of sexual assault
Non-consensual sexual penetration
When someone else’s negligence is the main factor of your Uber or Lyft accident, you will be given the right to file a lawsuit against that party. A skilled Uber and Lyft Accident lawyer at West Coast Trial Lawyers is available 24/7 to provide legal assistance. We will help you recover maximum compensation for your losses.