After lawsuits and calls for more protection for passengers, Uber released its second safety report, revealing that during 2019 and 2020, there were fewer sexual assaults but a higher death rate while making rides.
Uber reported that 1.4 billion trips were made in the US in 2019 but only 650 million trips in 2020, a slowdown attributable to the pandemic when trips taken fell by as much as 80% in April 2020. Report It concluded that 99.9% of those trips ended without a safety issue, even though there were 101 crash deaths. And 20 people were killed in trip-related assaults, an increase of 18% over 2017 and 2018, the period covered by Uber’s first safety report.
Uber said the rise in assaults followed national trends of an increase in violent homicides, which rose 30% between 2019 and 2020, according to Uber. Pew Research. Of the 101 deaths caused by accidents, Uber says 67 were the fault of third-party drivers affected by alcohol, speeding or driving the wrong way — although three accounts linked the death to an Uber driver who was speeding. The remaining deaths included unrestricted passengers and other drivers, as well as pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists from third parties, although the report did not say who caused their deaths.
Even taking into account fewer trips made due to the pandemic, the rate of sexual assault related to Uber rides decreased by 38%, with 3,824 reports filed in 2019 and 2020 compared to 5,981 sexual assault cases in 2017-2018, when Uber filed 2.3 Billion. ride. While most types of sexual assault decreased by 20% or more, rape had the lowest rate of decrease with 388 reports, down from 466 in 2017-2018.
Uber said many of the safety measures it put in place in 2019 and 2020, including ensuring that passengers get in the right vehicle, contributed to a decrease in the number of sexual assault reports. These measures were added after Uber was sued by people who said they had been raped and harassed by the company’s drivers, among other lawsuits alleging sexual assault while riding.
Uber has warned that the impact of the pandemic on Americans’ social lives has also affected the reduction in sexual assault reports. People have taken fewer trips to and from bars and nightclubs as the lockdown continues across the country.
The second safety report, which covers only 2019 and 2020, has been delayed while Uber awaits data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration — the ride-sharing company uses the agency’s methodology and data standards to screen deaths for its reports, according to New York times.
Uber released its first report in late 2019 and has committed to releasing another every two years. The 2021-22 report will reflect other efforts Uber has made to increase safety for drivers and passengers, such as introducing the ability to slowly record ride audio and expanding its RideCheck feature to check-in when rides take unexpected routes or make unscheduled stops.