Who’s Driving You? – The Public Awareness Campaign About For-Hire Vehicle Safety
Who’s Driving You? (WDY) was a campaign to raise public awareness about the potential dangers of for-hire drivers from services such as Lyft and Uber. Though the website is no longer functioning, it contained a lot of interesting information that you’ve probably never been exposed to. Most people don’t give a second thought to their safety when hiring these types of ridesharing services. After all, wouldn’t you assume that the drivers were properly vetted and qualified? While it’s true that these companies have standards that drivers must meet, and it’s implied that they perform background checks, it’s possible for things to slip through the cracks.
What Do You Know About Ridesharing Incidents?
If you were to ask the average person how many ridesharing incidents have occurred, they’d probably assume the number was very low. It’s not something you often hear about in the news. But Who’s Driving You? was documenting and recording ridesharing incidents, and you might be surprised to learn how many incidents allegedly occurred.
When you checked out the Who’s Driving You? website, you’d be introduced to a list of documented incidents that occurred with rideshare drivers. Each incident included a link to a source, so you weren’t expected to go on faith. According to WDY, 52 deaths have occurred at the hands of Uber and Lyft drivers. Granted, this is worldwide, though most of the incidents on the list did take place in the US.
If you scrolled further down the list, more interesting statistics pop up. They documented 102 alleged assaults that Uber and Lyft drivers were involved in. But that number pales in comparison to the number of alleged sexual assaults and harassment incidents that WDY has found and cataloged; a total of 395.
What Are the Problems with Ridesharing Services?
According to the website, Uber’s onboarding process for new drivers is “dangerously negligent.” They say that neither Lyft nor Uber uses proper background checks that involve law enforcement or even fingerprint documentation. Worse, no one even meets with these drivers in person before they’re hired and start driving people around.
What Else Was on the Who’s Driving You Website?
In addition to the pages that chronicle all of the incidents that Uber and Lyft drivers have been involved in, you can also find videos and blog posts on the website. The blog featured posts written about individual incidents that occurred involving Lyft and Uber drivers, information regarding ongoing issues with both companies, articles about ridesharing companies being sued, and even posts that chronicled the top three “Knuckleheads of the Week” at Uber and Lyft.
If you head to the video section of the WDY website, you’ll find various clips that were taken from legitimate news organizations, including CBC News and NBC. Some of the videos covered topics like the future of taxi regulation or insurance issues surrounding UberX while other videos focused more on problems with ridesharing companies such as felons working as drivers for UberX or ways that passengers and drivers might be at risk due to the way ridesharing vehicles are hailed.
Just because the Who’s Driving You campaign has ended doesn’t mean that their goals weren’t worth pursuing. While you’re probably safe in a majority of ridesharing interactions, there are some cases where things go wrong, and according to the Who’s Driving You? website, it was a bit more common than you might expect. Even though they’re gone, it’s a good idea to respect the overall message of the movement and realize that there are risks associated with ridesharing, so be sure to take sensible precautions the next time you use Uber, Lyft, or similar services.