Rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft have changed the landscape of daily public commuting. The disruptive businesses have been a force for good and nearly all stakeholders – with the exception of taxi owners – have enjoyed their services.
However, ridesharing companies have racked up their fair share of controversies. For obvious reasons, they can’t control every driver on their payroll, and are often liable for damages associated with negligent driving and other criminal activity, including attempted murder.
Here’s the gist of rideshare accidents and even attempted murder associated with the likes of Uber and Lyft.
The Most Common Causes of Rideshare Accidents
San Francisco rideshare accidents happen for the same reason as other car crashes. The most common contributing factor is driver negligence, driving under the influence, distracted driving, speeding, and violating roadway rules.
Distraction remains a big risk for rideshare drivers because they have to stay logged onto their apps and often consult tools such as Google Maps. Part of the whole gig is to manually respond to new ride requests as and when they arrive. An alarm for a new ride could cause a momentary distraction to a driver, causing them to crash.
Phone distractions remain a key reason for many accidents in San Francisco, and they could lead to significant damage, including death.
Other reasons for rideshare accidents include defects in the vehicle or perhaps driving in an unsafe area. It isn’t uncommon for Uber and Lyft drivers to drive near roadway construction zones only to collide with hazards. Rideshare drives can be at risk of running into potholes and debris on the road. This could cause a rideshare accident in San Francisco.
Some vehicle crashes may occur due to a lack of vehicle maintenance and defects.
Attempted Murders – More Common Than You Think
While most rideshare incidents can be chalked up to accidents, there have been cases of Uber and Lyft drivers engaging in violent behavior including attempted murder. Some of them have often succeeded in their attempts.
A cursory look at crime statistics for Uber will shock you.
A 2018 report uncovered over 3000 sexual assaults that happened during Uber Rides. This includes everything from unwanted kissing to actual cases of rape.
Deaths during Uber and Lyft rides are also not completely unheard of. In recent news, Margie Quibol, a 70 year old passenger died after her Lyft allegedly fell asleep behind the wheel and lost control before hitting a light pole. The South Californian driver has been arrested for vehicular manslaughter. Quibol died from her injuries.
Who is Responsible for Rideshare Accident Injuries?
It’s not always straightforward to determine the liable party in a rideshare accident. The process is very similar to any other vehicle collision. The only difference is the presence of a third party – the rideshare company.
It’s worth noting that rideshare drivers for Uber and Lyft are not considered employees. As such, it is difficult to pursue a claim against these companies because they are treated as a marketplace that merely connects drivers with riders.
However, this area of law is largely unsettled and it is extremely important to discuss your legal options with an attorney.
What To Do if You Are Involved in a Rideshare Accident?
The first step is to call the police and file a report. It is important to stay composed and collect as much evidence as you can. This means taking photos of the crime scene and the road as well as any street signs, getting insurance, and the driver’s license. The evidence will make it easier to determine the liable party for the accident and help you get compensation for your injuries.
Make sure to get medical help because your high adrenaline levels may mask your injuries. Always prioritize your health before anything else.
Once you’re in the clear, get in touch with a rideshare accident attorney in San Francisco. You may be able to sue the rideshare company. Be sure to contact an attorney before contacting your insurance. Rideshare companies will do everything they can to wiggle out of their responsibility to you. Even if they are held responsible, they will try to minimize the compensation for your injuries.
Whether you are the driver, rider, or a third party in the accident, you should be able to receive compensation for property damage, pain and suffering, loss of wages, and others.
Have you or someone you know been injured due to a rideshare accident? Make sure to receive the best legal help for rideshare accidents in San Francisco. Click here for legal consultation.