Posted: January 11, 2015
Is it safe to take a ride in a Uber ride share . This question is complex and touches on many issues. We will attempt to cover the most important ones that impact you, the potential customer of Uber.
1. Are Uber Drivers Safe People and Save Drivers
What Uber buries in the fine print would make your toes curl . The disclaim any liability or responsibility for its drivers. They call them third party providers. The slick advertising says, "Safest rides on the road." and "Drivers are professional and friendly.
Yet their buried legal mumbo jumbo states in part, "Uber does not guarantee the suitability, safety or ability of third party providers. It is solely your responsibility to determine if a third party provider will meet your needs. Really . How are you supposed to do that.
But it gets even worse as Uber says, " You acknowledge that you may be exposed to situations where third party providers are unsafe and offensive. Uber should be even more explicit and say you could be raped by a Uber driver. This allegedely has happened already. In fact there have been multiple problems including an Uber driver hitting a pasenger with a claw hammer. Cnet reported that a Uber driver raped a woman in Boston during her ride. and other violent acts.
Uber, of course says that using the services of a third party provider carries no liability for Uber. They say they are merely a technology company. But what is obvious is they put the whole process in motion and are making a ton of money. So they should be resposible for the acts of its drivers.
This business cries out for State regulation and not just city by city regulation. They governor needs to step in and lead legislation that makes Uber liablle for any acts of its drivers while they are acting in conjuntion with transporting passengers for Uber.
The City of Cincinnati Ordinance on Ride Sharing
To it's credit the City of Cincinnati did promulagate an ordinance requiring licensing and insurance for ride sharing companies., as well as safety requirements for vehicles and drivers . But the ordinance does not go far enough. The insurance is only applicable when the driver has the third party application open or in other words has accepted a ride request and until the ride is complete. So when the Uber drivers are staging themselves and/or driving without a specific passenger pick up the insurance does not apply.
In California a 6 year old was run over and killed by a Uber driver . Uber asserts that the driver is an independant contractor for which they bear no liability or if they are considered an employee then since they were not going for a passenger the driver was "not on the clock" or in the course and scope of employment. This brings into play a legal doctrine called responmdeat superior. See http://www.victimslawyer.com/ride-share-injury-claims-california/ And therefore there is no reponsibility and potentially no insurance.
The Cost Of Uber In My Experience is a Rip off
I used Uber one time. The cost was twice that of a taxi cab. When I asked the driver what the cost was he said it was being calculated as we drove. I was shocked to pay twice what we had paid a cab driver for the exact return ride. But the cost is not the real issue. The real issue is the safety of the public and the repsonsilbitliy of Uber to pay for damages caused by its drivers.
Get Legal Help IF Injured in a Ride Share or by a Ride Share Driver
With the myriad technical legal issues it is mandatory in my opinion to hire a skilled personal injury lawyer . There are so many issues from legal responsibility to insurance coverage. that a lay person would not have the capacity to fight themselves. Rest assured the individual drivers probably have no insurance coverage that covers their acts unless it comes from Uber. If the driver does it will likely be minimum limits. So Uber's insurance is likely the source of recovery . And Uber should also be help responsible for the acts of its drivers it puts on the streets..
About the author
Anthony Castelli has over 32 years experience as an Ohio personal injury trial lawyer. He welcomes your call for a free consultation so he can get started helping you while the trail is fresh and the culprits are identifiable. Call 513-621-2345 right now to speak with Anthony to get his help. There is no charge or obligation for this free consult.
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