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Uber and Lyft drivers work dangerous jobs. In fact, according to Technology Review, Uber and Lyft drivers are the main cause for a sharp rise in non-DWI traffic related deaths in the U.S. Think about it — if an Uber driver is driving ride sharing passengers around full time, 8-9 hours a day, that’s a lot of time on the road, which inevitably leads to higher risk. Most of us don’t spend more than 2 hours on the road in a day and even still most of us have been involved in fender benders or worse. Now, before you start blaming your local Uber or Lyft drivers for causing an increased number of traffic accidents, remember that these drivers are also the reason behind less drunk or under the influence drivers behind the wheel. In fact, thanks to Uber and Lyft, there are anywhere from 20% – 60% less drunk drivers on the road depending on where you live. So, while there are less drunk drivers on the road, there are more exhausted Uber and Lyft drivers that are regularly using their phones to search for passengers while behind the wheel.
Why is Driving Uber or Lyft So Dangerous?
Driving for Uber and Lyft is dangerous because you never know who’s about to get into your car. While these companies have a passenger rating system in place to put their drivers somewhat at ease, one never knows if they’re picking up someone that’s either blackout drunk or feeling excessively angry. There are plenty of videos online of Uber and Lyft drivers being verbally abused or worse, assaulted. According to the OSHA Data Sheet, “the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) data indicates that annual homicide rates for taxi drivers from 1998 to 2007 ranged from 9 per 100,000 workers, to 19. During that period the rate for all workers was at or below 0.5 per 100,000 workers. In other words, taxi drivers’ homicide rates were between 21 and 33 times higher than the national average for all workers.”
An increased risk associated with driving for a ride-sharing company is being on the road for long hours. Not only is this a concern in terms of the driver getting tired, but the longer one is on the road, the longer they are exposed to distracted drivers or those driving while intoxicated.
Female Uber/Lyft Drivers
The other reality is that female Uber and Lyft drivers are at a greater risk. There have been many instances where female drivers have reported being propositioned for sexual activities. In fact, in several Facebook groups for female Uber and Lyft drivers, many women have stories of inappropriate conduct from male passengers. Most drivers don’t have dash-cams to capture this inappropriate behavior, which makes it quite difficult to prove to Uber, Lyft or in court. For these reasons, women only make up about 14% of all Uber and Lyft drivers.
At the end of the day, driving for Uber or Lyft is like picking up a hitch-hiker with a few safety measures in place. These drivers are expected to take routes they’ve never taken before with a stranger in their vehicle. In our list of most dangerous jobs, driving for Uber and Lyft is in the top #3.
Are You an Uber or Lyft Driver that was Injured on the Job?
At the Parrish Law Firm our goal is to make sure that injured Uber and Lyft drivers, ride-sharing passengers and pedestrians receive damages that they deserve. If you have been injured in a ride-sharing related accident and have not received the compensation you deserve, contact us for a free consultation at (571) 229 – 1800 or here.