While Lyft’s recently launched IPO continues to drop in the stock market amid issues with its sustainability and value as a company, Uber recently released a preemptive warning to investors that safety reports due to be released “some time within the year” on Uber’s operations may stifle public support and it’s own stock market potential. The vague announcement and it’s rather open ended schedule for release of the actual report remain as ode and suspicious as most announcements by Uber.
BOTH companies have been reviewed poorly by financial media and independent sources alike for the unsustainable and financially self destructive nature of their business models wile launching their public trading options on the stock market (IPO).
As we have in previous attempts by Uber and Lyft to announce “safety” improvements, Ride Safe will again review these proposals and their actual effect.
All methods of preventing crime and safety shortfalls that the Taxi industry has practiced for over half a century now.
Continuous Criminal Background Checks
This is a rotating and regular check of each driver’s background done at more than just the first registration on the app. UBER has had this implemented for just over a year now and LYFT has just begun the practice. Despite being implemented for a year, Uber continued to contribute the same increase in sexual assaults committed by their drivers. Assaults that now record in just one year, more sexual assaults than ever recorded with taxi operators over several decades.
The fundimental flaw with Uber and Lyft’s background checking process is very simple. They are not actual comprehensive background checking processes.
Both Sterling Check and Checkr have numerous issues with their inability to run actual fingerprint database checks, leaving out several US states from background and criminal databases and criminal histories from other countries the person applying may have resided in or visited.
Repeating a background check with companies that are not actually doing any background checking is useless and as sexual assault rates have rampantly increased due to rideshare companies since 2014, it is entirely irresponsible.
Enhanced Identity Verification
These are systems on the Uber and Lyft apps which ask the driver to take a photo of themselves and/or their vehicle in real time either at intervals or before each driving shift.
During our own investigation of the application process for Uber, we were able to over come the facial and vehicle recognition checks by simply holding a photo of a person or vehicle in front of the phone and taking a picture of it.
A verification system is entirely useless when no real verification is taking place.
These are a function of the apps that allow you to hit a button on the app and after the app asks you if you really want to contact emergency services, you will be patched through to police. Simply hitting the call tab and calling 911 would of course be faster and more direct.
However, eliminating the main cause of so many assaults and dangerous drivers being on the road in the first place would of course be a far better solution.
Taxi companies have utilized simple measures to ensure customer and public safety that have existed from the very beginning of commercial motor transit.
The fact that Uber and Lyft continue to avoid these simple solutions only indicates that they can not and will not utilize them for the simple matter of LIABILITY. Liability is of course the very term that Uber and Lyft mandate their drivers and customers assume full responsibility for in the contracting and TOS agreements for both companies.
“LIMITATION OF LIABILITY.”
“UBER SHALL NOT BE LIABLE FOR INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL, EXEMPLARY, PUNITIVE, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES, INCLUDING LOST PROFITS, LOST DATA, PERSONAL INJURY, OR PROPERTY DAMAGE RELATED TO, IN CONNECTION WITH, OR OTHERWISE RESULTING FROM ANY USE OF THE SERVICES, REGARDLESS OF THE NEGLIGENCE (EITHER ACTIVE, AFFIRMATIVE, SOLE, OR CONCURRENT) OF UBER, EVEN IF UBER HAS BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES.”
“Limitation of Liability”
“IN NO EVENT WILL LYFT, INCLUDING OUR AFFILIATES, SUBSIDIARIES, PARENTS, SUCCESSORS AND ASSIGNS, AND EACH OF OUR RESPECTIVE OFFICERS, DIRECTORS, EMPLOYEES, AGENTS, OR SHAREHOLDERS (COLLECTIVELY “LYFT” FOR PURPOSES OF THIS SECTION), BE LIABLE TO YOU FOR ANY INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL, EXEMPLARY, PUNITIVE, CONSEQUENTIAL, OR INDIRECT DAMAGES (INCLUDING DAMAGES FOR DELETION, CORRUPTION, LOSS OF DATA, LOSS OF PROGRAMS, FAILURE TO STORE ANY INFORMATION OR OTHER CONTENT MAINTAINED OR TRANSMITTED BY THE LYFT PLATFORM, SERVICE INTERRUPTIONS, OR FOR THE COST OF PROCUREMENT OF SUBSTITUTE SERVICES) ARISING OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE LYFT PLATFORM, THE SERVICES, OR THIS AGREEMENT, HOWEVER ARISING INCLUDING NEGLIGENCE, EVEN IF WE OR OUR AGENTS OR REPRESENTATIVES KNOW OR HAVE BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES. THE LYFT PLATFORM MAY BE USED BY YOU TO REQUEST AND SCHEDULE TRANSPORTATION, GOODS, OR OTHER SERVICES WITH THIRD PARTY PROVIDERS, BUT YOU AGREE THAT LYFT HAS NO RESPONSIBILITY OR LIABILITY TO YOU RELATED TO ANY TRANSPORTATION, GOODS OR OTHER SERVICES PROVIDED TO YOU BY THIRD PARTY PROVIDERS OTHER THAN AS EXPRESSLY SET FORTH IN THIS AGREEMENT. CERTAIN JURISDICTIONS MAY NOT ALLOW THE EXCLUSION OR LIMITATION OF CERTAIN DAMAGES. IF THESE LAWS APPLY TO YOU, SOME OR ALL OF THE ABOVE DISCLAIMERS, EXCLUSIONS OR LIMITATIONS MAY NOT APPLY TO YOU, AND YOU MAY HAVE ADDITIONAL RIGHTS.”
The fact that the Taxi industry does not demand customers agree to assuming full liability indicates why the Taxi industry continues to remain safer than Rideshares to both customers and the general public.
Forcing liability on the customer saves money for the provider at a cost to the customer and the public.
No Taxi company, Bus company or Air transportation provider mandates a customer agree to such a term as Uber and Lyft do.