As the 21st century is nearing the end of its second decade, the demand for ridesharing services is growing quickly. Meanwhile, the safety of hiring such “non-taxis” is becoming more and more questionable.
Uber has been around for 10 years. It has turned the life of people in many countries around. Cheaper rides with high accessibility upped the convenience tremendously. Some people have given up their vehicles in favor of such services. As Lyft and Uber made their way to the market, more and more users left taxis behind.
However, as the convenience of using rideshare over regular taxi services has become obvious, the safety and legal responsibility seem to be lurking in a grey area. What happens if there is an accident? Who is responsible?
Uber and Lyft Aren’t Taxis
When you book a taxi ride, you are entering an agreement with a taxi service provider. In case an accident occurs, the company’s insurance covers the expenses.
When you get into an accident while using Uber or Lyft, you are covered by either the driver’s insurance or the company’s insurance. That’s where it could get tricky. None of the companies is happy with covering your accident-related expenses, especially if a serious injury is involved. Most likely, you would need to hire an attorney to have your expenses settled timely and properly.
Ridesharing Services Increased the Number of Accidents
According to a study done by researchers from the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, the rise of ride-sharing services increased traffic-related deaths by 2% to 3% in the United States.
Other problems associated with the overwhelming use of rideshare are higher congestion and decreased exploitation of public transport. Both lead to harming the environment and making life inconvenient for busy city dwellers.
Some cities have already started to conquer the problem. For example, NYC introduced a cap on ridesharing services in 2018 and extended it for one more year in August 2019.
Top Reasons For Rideshare Accidents
The convenience of using rideshare services is starting to be offset by dangers. The top reasons for rideshare accidents include:
While rideshare drivers may be careful about maintaining speed limits when carrying a passenger to get 5-star reviews, they are likely to speed to get to the next client.
Lack of experience
When you hire a taxi, you are likelier to enjoy a ride with an experienced driver than when riding with Uber or Lyft. Drivers only need one year of experience to offer ridesharing services.
In the race to earn more money, rideshare drivers tend to overwork. As a result, you may face a sleepy driver behind the wheel, thus increasing the chances of getting into an accident substantially.
As rideshare drivers are taking you to your destination, they can get distracted by the rideshare app to take a new order. Drivers often look at their smartphones to secure a new client faster than the competition, thus pulling the attention away from the road.
Improper vehicle maintenance
Rideshare drivers often fail to maintain their vehicles properly due to the lack of time and financing. As a result, many passengers are injured when tires blow, brakes stop working or airbags don’t open.
While such rideshare companies as Uber and Lyft are highly convenient, they don’t offer taxi services, which complicates the insurance payment process. As the number of rideshare-accidents is growing, more and more passengers are sucked into the black hole of unfulfilled claims. In some cases, proper expense coverage is impossible without legal assistance.
For more information about rideshare-related accident claims in Los Angeles and beyond, please contact us today.