Uber Accidents in New Jersey By the Numbers
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Uber Accidents in New Jersey By the Numbers
New Jersey has seen an incremental increase in the number of Uber ride-share bookings across the state. Uber is very popular in South Jersey, even though Lyft is less expensive. It seems price and the type of cars allowed were the main reasons South Jersey folks voted on social media for their first choice of ride. The ride-sharing industry is worth approximately $61 billion.
However, even though Uber and other ride-share applications are popular, they also apparently negatively impact the cities they operate in. What is thought of as innovation is having interesting impacts on the cities where Uber and other ride-share companies do business. It’s hard to imagine that taking an Uber would be anything other than beneficial. However, relatively recent studies have shown ride-shares, such as Uber, increase traffic congestion, result in a higher number of traffic deaths, and large declines in transit ridership, which affects city coffers.
Just what are the negative effects of Uber?
Here is an overall view of some of the findings on how Uber and other ride-share companies, also referred to as Transportation Network Companies (TNCs), may affect the cities they do business in. The ride-share market value is projected to be an estimated $220 billion by 2025.
- Driving increases drastically – in cities with high ride-share usage driving has jumped roughly 3 percent when compared to cities with the lowest ride-share use.
- Uber operates in busy transit areas – bus companies are losing riders to TNCs, increasing road traffic on urban streets, and reducing walking, biking, or transit use. For every mile of driving removed, ride-share companies add approximately 2.6 miles.
- TNCs increase traffic deaths – a recent study estimated that ride-share traffic deaths shot up in 2017 by an astounding 1,100.
- Ride-share drivers have virtually no safety training.
- Uber and Lyft hoard trip data, making accurate figures difficult to source. Most statistics relating to ride-share companies are estimated.
Uber Reports Beginning to Present More Statistics
Uber did not release any type of reporting until 2017-2018. They then continued to release another report for 2019 and 2020. In these reports, they share the most serious incidents, including sexual assaults, fatal accidents, and physical assault deaths. According to Uber, their statistics mirror the world we live and work in. About 25% of the US population uses ride-sharing at least once a month. Uber suggests they have four key pillars in place that address safety for their users. Those keys are:
- Access to the platform
- Ride experience
- Driver and rider support
- Partnerships with advocates and experts
Many reports in the news over the years since the introduction of ride-share services talked about background checks in light of the number of assault and sexual assault incidents. According to Uber, in 2019 – 2020 over 500,000 applications to be drivers were not approved due to screening. Additionally, they indicate that criminal and motor vehicle checks are done every year for all active drivers. Uber also checks criminal records yearly and when the 2019 – 2020 report was released, over 80,000 drivers were purged from the platform. Uber’s Community Guidelines state: treat everyone with respect, help to keep everyone safe, and follow the law. While those tenets are admirable, it seems they are not always followed by Uber drivers.
Uber Safety Innovations
Many reports of Uber incidents have included remarks about the safety of the drivers on the platform. It has only been relatively recently, in 2019-2020, that prospective drivers for the platform were those who agreed to a background check. Uber has over 3.8 million drivers worldwide. Since that new hiring requirement, other new safety features have been included, such as:
- Ride Verification – “Verify My Ride” lets passengers opt-in to get a unique 4-digit PIN before a trip. The PIN is provided to the driver verbally. The driver enters it into the app to start the trip.
- Rider On-Trip Reporting – Allows the rider to discreetly report a non-emergency safety issue while in transit.
- Rear Seat Belt Alerts – The alert prompts backseat riders to buckle up via a push audio tone notification transmitted from the driver’s phone.
- Rider/Driver Recordings – A pilot program allowing riders and drivers to record audio during a trip. It is encrypted on the phone and can only be accessed if the user reports a safety incident, and sends the audio.
- Verifying Riders – Passengers trying to set up a new account with an anonymous form of payment, must upload an ID. The ID is validated via a series of checks.
- Making Addresses and Phone Numbers Anonymous – The Safety Toolkit is a spot in the platform app where riders and drivers may access safety features during the trip. This tool hides the personal details of the driver and rider(s).
- Reducing Speeding and Driving While Drowsy – The Speed Limit Alert and the Driving-Hours Tool reduce speeding and fatigued driving.
- Emergency Button – This is in-app and connects drivers and riders directly to 911 by pushing one button. In some cases, 911 can be texted.
- Sharing Trip Information – The Share My Trip/Follow My Ride lets drivers and passengers share their journey by following it in real-time.
- Ride-Check – Detects unexpected routes, and possible accidents, and sends notifications to drivers and riders checking on their wellbeing. This tool can be used to summon assistance if needed.
Community Minded Uber Initiatives
In a little-known gesture, Uber spent $50 million globally to protect Uber drivers by sending over 30 million masks, wipes, and bottles of sanitizer to over 2.5 million drivers. The company also financially assisted drivers affected by COVID-19 by supporting them with more than $40 million globally. Uber also:
- Assisted people to get to vaccine appointments.
- Provided 10 million free or discounted rides so no one missed a vaccine.
- In partnership with the White House, Uber donated free rides up to $25 for those going to and from vaccination appointments.
January 2019 through December 2020 Uber Statistics Nationally
Incidents reported during this period included:
- Motor vehicle fatalities
- Fatal physical assault
- Sexual assault
- Non-consensual sexual penetration
- Non-consensual kissing of a sexual body part
- Non-consensual touching of a sexual body part
- Attempted non-consensual sexual penetration
- Non-consensual kissing of a non-sexual body particular
Uber’s Motor Vehicle Fatality Rate 2019 through 2020
Uber reports their death rate as a result of accidents is about half of the national average. Approximately 50 percent of the deaths involving an Uber vehicle involved one or more risky driving behaviors; e.g., speeding, DUI/DWI, wrong-way driving, etc. It should be noted that 94 percent of such behaviors were those on the part of third-party drivers. In other words, Uber drivers were generally not the ones at fault for risky driving.
Sexual Assault In Any Form is Devastating
Nearly 52.2 million women and 27.6 million men face some form of sexual violence during their lives. Although typically underreported, awareness is increasing, and reporting is slowly on the rise. Uber reports the following statistics in this category, going down from 5,981 sexual assaults in 2017-2018 to 3,824 in 2019-2020.
Overall, Uber’s latest report indicated that 99.9 percent of trips taken on their platform were safe, with no events. Those involving a critical safety event were 0.0002 percent and sexual assault reports dropped over 30 percent.
When reading Uber statistics, it is helpful to note that Uber’s motor vehicle death rate differs from the national average. This is because no one under the age of 21 can drive on the Uber platform. Drivers must also have at least one year of driving experience. All driver records are screened and those with serious offenses are disqualified from driving.
Ride-Share Statistics of Interest
- The ride-share industry spans the globe, and in a snapshot of time, is worth about $61 billion in 2022.
- The two big ride-share names, Uber and Lyft, comprise 99 percent of the U.S. market.
- Self-driving ride-share industry vehicles are set to globally generate $173 billion over the next three years.
- Ride-sharing is one of the fastest-growing industries in the world.
- The ride-share market is expected to be worth $220 billion by 2025.
- While the U.S. may have millions of vehicles on the road, Uber and Lyft log up to 14 percent of vehicle miles in some states.
- In 2016, Lyft and Uber averaged a combined 500 million U.S. vehicle miles traveled per month.
- Americans utilizing ride-share services shot up from 15 percent to 36 percent between 2015 and 2018.
- Frequent ride-share users are Americans aged 18-29; more than any other group.
- A large portion of Uber’s riders, 43 percent, are heading out to parties or dinners.
- Roughly 24 percent of wage earners who are paid less than $30,000 a year use ride-share services.
- Uber employs roughly 4 million drivers in 600 cities across the globe.
- Just about 24.5 percent of U.S. ride-share drivers work for Lyft and Uber at the same time.
- Uber and Lyft are used by 12 percent of U.S. ride-share customers.
- In 2018, approximately 46 million Americans downloaded Uber and Lyft applications.
- Uber averages over 320,000 more rides a day than New York’s Yellow Cabs.
Contact an Experienced New Jersey Uber/Lyft Accident Injury Lawyer
If you, suffered a serious injury in a New Jersey Uber or Lyft accident, or sadly, lost or a loved one in an Uber or Lyft accident, the dedicated Rideshare Accident Injury Lawyers at the Todd J. Leonard Law Firm are here to help. For more than 30 years, we have been helping clients who have been seriously injured in all types of accidents. We are a five-star rated law firm, recovering a total of more than $100 million on behalf of our clients. We will do our best to hold the negligent driver fully accountable for their actions and get you the justice you deserve.
We recognize the challenges you face as a result of a serious motor vehicle crash and are uniquely positioned to protect your rights and help you through the recovery process. To learn more and to schedule a FREE consultation, give us a call today at 973-920-7900. You can also connect with us through our online form. There is never a fee unless we win your case. We have two conveniently located offices in Denville and Morristown, New Jersey.
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