Ride-sharing services like Uber or Lyft have recently been under fire for hiring drivers that physically or sexually assault passengers. Many of these incidents occur because the hiring process for these companies lacks the implementation of thorough background checks. If an Uber or Lyft driver assaulted you or a family member, you should consult with an experienced Philadelphia Uber and Lyft injury lawyer. At Reiff & Bily, our lawyers possess over 40 years of combined legal experience that we will use to help you fight against negligent companies like Uber and Lyft. Our lawyers are here to discuss what to do if an Uber or Lyft driver touches or assaults you in Philadelphia.
How to Handle Unwanted Contact from an Uber Driver
If you have ever traveled by using a ridesharing application like Uber or Lyft, you have probably had at least one ride where you did not feel entirely safe due to the actions of your driver. While it may be easy to simply end a ride if you are not comfortable with the driver’s skills behind the wheel, it is difficult to handle a situation where your driver is trying to hurt or sexually assault you.
According to a study conducted by CNN, there have been sexual assault accusations against at least 100 Uber drivers in the past four years. With this many reported cases against drivers, it is important to have a plan if a driver attempts to assault you. The following is a list of actions you should take if your Uber or Lyft driver tries to hurt you.
End the Ride
The first action you should take if a driver touches you or assaults you is to end the ride immediately. Uber and Lyft allow a passenger to end their ride at any time for any reason. If you cannot get to your phone to end your ride or your driver does not pull over to let you out of the car, you should try to escape from the vehicle safely.
Contact Law Enforcement
If you can escape from the car, you should still contact the police to report the incident. One of the advantages of using a ride-share program is that there a lengthy trail of evidence to show that you were traveling with a certain driver so gathering evidence will be easier. Once you report the incident to the police, you should request a copy of the police report for your records.
It is important to gather any evidence you can about the driver and the vehicle they were operating. For example, you should consider recording the incident to document any statements or actions by the driver. This may not be usable in a claim against the company, but it will provide you with valuable evidence for law enforcement. It is also possible that the driver could be utilizing another person’s Uber or Lyft account when they picked you up. Be sure to check the driver’s license plate and photo to make sure they match.
Get Medical Attention
Additionally, if you were injured during the driver’s attack, you should seek immediate medical attention. Inform the medical staff of how you received your injuries to help you document your case if you choose to file a claim against the driver and his employer.
Report the Incident to Uber or Lyft
You should also report the incident to an Uber or Lyft representative so that the driver could be removed from driving for the company. However, it may be wise to report the incident after speaking with an experienced injury lawyer. This is because companies like Uber or Lyft have an interest in minimizing the financial and media impact of a crime committed by one of their drivers. This means that a representative from Uber or Lyft may look for ways to diminish your claim. An experienced injury lawyer can guide you through your report to one of these companies and ensure that you do not agree to anything that may jeopardize your potential case.
There are many ways to be safe when using a ride-share app. For example, you could inform friends and family where you are going and also alert them when you reach your destination. It is important to keep yourself safe when using a ride-share service because you are essentially traveling with a stranger.
Our Philadelphia Personal Injury Attorneys Can Help You File a Claim Against Uber or Lyft
If an Uber or Lyft driver injured you or a family member, you should contact an experienced Philadelphia personal injury attorney. At Reiff & Bily, we are dedicated to helping you pursue the legal compensation you deserve from a negligent ride-sharing corporation. To schedule a free legal consultation, call us at (215) 274-0072, or contact us online.