Whether you’re on vacation in a new city, or your car’s in the shop, ride-sharing apps like Uber and Lyft are a convenient way to make sure you get to where you need to go. They’re easy to use, whenever you need to use them. But there are some risks you should keep in mind.
Remember that a ride-share entails that you are going to get into a vehicle being driven by someone you don’t know. Uber and Lyft drivers are all required to pass vehicle inspections and background checks, but there is still no guarantee that every driver will be 100% reliable. Accidents can still happen, and some accidents won’t even be the fault of the Uber/Lyft driver. The same risks can apply when you climb into any vehicle, sure. But there’s the matter of insurance to discuss.
If an accident does occur, you are not guaranteed coverage as a ride-share passenger. If the ride-share driver is insured, they may not be covered for the commercial use of their own vehicle unless they bought a policy for that. Also, while they are working, the ride-share driver is covered by their company’s insurance policy. However, this is still not a guarantee that if you, the passenger, are injured in an accident, that you will also be covered. Insurance companies are not yet including policies that concern ride-sharing, so you need to be careful.
How to Lessen the Risks
You’re basically at the mercy of a stranger that may or may not be insured when you climb into an Uber or a Lyft, so it’s important to at least adhere to a few small rules to keep yourself as safe as you can. Check the car’s make and model, as well as the driver’s picture, and make sure it matches the car and driver that picks you up. If someone you don’t recognize pulls up to you in a car you don’t recognize, they are probably not the driver you called for, so don’t get in their car. Make sure to report them as well.
Utilize the app’s built in tools to check your location and route, and inform close friends or family members where you are and where you are going, just in case. That way, they’ll know where you were supposed to be if you go missing.
And if you can, don’t travel alone. As is the case with most every kind of outing, it’s better to travel with a friend or two in order to stay safe. And don’t forget to wear your seatbelt!
Ride-sharing apps are still a great convenience. Don’t let anything in this article scare you! Just make sure you know the risks, and don’t get into any trouble if you can help it. If anything does happen, there are uber injury lawyers and you can report drivers to their companies if they violate any laws or if they don’t do their job correctly.