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A Call for Ride-Hailing Services to Use Safer Cars

Somewhere in New York City, there’s a 2011 Hyundai Sonata GLS with eight pending safety recalls. They range from potential seat-belt detachment to possible engine failure.

Meanwhile, in the Seattle area, there is a 2011 Ford Fusion with five open recalls, including a dangerous airbag issue.

If you use the ride-hailing services Uber or Lyft in these cities, either of those cars – or thousands like them – could be your next ride.

A recent Consumer Reports investigation found about 1 in 6 ride-hailing cars in New York City and King County, Washington (home to Seattle), had at least one unaddressed safety issue. The survey reviewed 93,958 cars, uncovering problems with 15,175, or 16.2 percent.

“Uber's website says people can ‘ride with confidence,’ while Lyft promises ‘peace of mind,’ yet both companies fail to ensure that rideshare cars are free from safety defects that could put passengers at risk,” said William Wallace, a Consumer Reports safety policy advocate.

 Who Is Responsible for Passenger Safety?

Consumer advocates say Uber and Lyft, valued at billions of dollars each, can – and should – do more to keep their customers safe. They say the companies could use vehicle identification numbers to identify and ban unsafe cars.

“Uber and Lyft have the ability to have zero recalled cars on their platforms at the push of a button,” said Jason Levine, executive director of the Center for Auto Safety. “They both claim to be technology companies yet refuse to use that technology to take this obvious step to decrease the danger from unrepaired recalls on their drivers and customers."

Consumer Reports said the companies have “taken only minor steps” toward making sure the cars used by their drivers are safe, such as reminding drivers to address recalls.

 Injured? Time to Hail a Lawyer 

If you’ve been injured using a ride-hailing service in Alabama, you face several obstacles, from various sources:

  • The driver, who is unlikely to accept any responsibility, even if the car was under recall.
  • The companies, who have exhibited reluctance to pressure drivers to keep their cars safe.
  • Your own injuries, which may keep you out of work and unable to provide for your family as bills pile up.
  • An insurance company, determined to pay you as little as possible, that will make you a lowball offer because they know you are financially desperate.

Fortunately, the car accident attorneys at Dean Waite & Associates, L.L.C., based in Mobile, know how to deal with irresponsible drivers, their companies, and insurers. They will investigate your accident to tailor the best legal strategy. Serving the entire Gulf Coast region, they will utilize their experience, resources, and aggressive approach to win a fair settlement for you and your family. Contact them today for a free consultation.

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