You need a ride and you’re a pretty cool person, so you know that the thing to do today is to call Uber or Lyft, and not a taxi. But do you know what to do to stay safe and make sure you don’t get spirited away by a stranger?
Last week a celebrity daughter made headlines by posting her account of an attempted Uber pick-up in LA that was a fake, according to The Daily Mail. The child of Clerks and Dogma creator, Kevin Smith, received a consolation cake from her director dad for having to experience the trauma of almost getting in the wrong car. Here’s what safety experts told USA Today about what to do if you find yourself in a similar situation (minus the baked goods).
4 Tips for Uber Safety
- Check the car and driver: Does the person picking you up actually match the description provided to you by your ride-share service? You will get the license number and car from the service. Do not get in if your information does not match.
- Wait for your ride inside: Whenever possible, wait for your ride in a safe place, not out on the street, and don’t leave until you receive a notification that your car and driver have arrived. You will get a message from the person assigned to pick you up. Go only if you know this was the car sent for you by the ride-share service.
- Share your ride info: You can let people know your ride info, so if anyone is waiting for you they know when to expect you. Use this feature of your rideshare app to make others aware of where you are headed and when you can be expected.
- Ratings count: When you do get in a car, check driver ratings and make sure you note any issues with your driver. The ratings systems in ride-share apps exist to protect passengers and drivers and to keep everyone on their best behavior.
Although no one will give you a cake when you save yourself, do take a page from young Ms. Smith’s book. She refused to get in a car with an unknown driver, and was right. The driver who wanted to take her was not her ride. Now Smith is safe, and very much alive, able to tell us all about her troubles on Instagram.
Talk to a Lawyer
If you are a rider or driver and were injured in a ride-share service setting or elsewhere, speak to a lawyer. Many attorneys consult for free or no fee and will be happy to speak to you and help you determine if you have a claim.
- Have an injury claim? Get your claim reviewed for free. (Consumer Injury)
- Using Ridesharing Apps for Delivery: Risky Business (FindLaw’s Free Enterprise)
- Ride Service Uber Sued Over Girl’s Death (FindLaw’s Injured)
- Safe Driving: The Dos and Don’ts (FindLaw)