What happens if I am involved in an Uber, Lyft, or other ride-sharing accident?
by Jeffrey J. Kroll
Ridesharing has become extremely popular in the past 5 to 10 years. A simple app, such as Uber or Lyft, can assist you in obtaining a ride to pretty much any destination with just a few simple clicks on your cellphone.
Most ride-share companies have insurance policies that are very complicated, complex, and crafted to favor the company rather than the consumer/passenger. When a ride-share driver is on duty, they will typically carry their own liability insurance coverage in addition to liability coverage from the ride-share company. Typically, Uber and/or Lyft drivers are covered by a one-million-dollar liability policy, at times.
It sounds simple; if you are injured in a ride-share collision, you are covered by the accident, correct? Not so fast. Uber and Lyft drivers are considered independent contractors, which means they are not technically employees of these companies. As a result, the ride-share companies may deny responsibility for collisions caused by the drivers.
With the help of an experienced ride-share personal injury lawyer, you may be able to file a claim and recover compensation for your damages and losses because of the ride-share collision. Call the Uber, Lyft, and ride-share personal injury attorneys at Kaveny + Kroll today or contact us at (312) 761-5585 for a free consultation to find out what your rights may be.
What are some of the causes of Uber, Lyft, and other rideshare company accidents in the Chicago area?
Like many other motor-vehicle collisions, speed can be deadly. Ride-share drivers are often in a hurry to pick up and drop off passengers so they can move on to additional fares to increase their compensation. This combination of speed, plus trying to obtain additional fares, is a recipe for disaster.
Fatigue often plays a role in ride-share accidents. As many are aware, some ride-share drivers work for the ride-share companies as a part-time job after already working an 8 to 10-hour shift. As a result, drivers are more likely to be tired or fatigued while driving passengers.
One of the major causes of collisions, whether it is a non-professional driver or a professional driver, is the concept of distracted driving. When the ride-share driver has passengers in the car, conversing with them and not focusing on the road can lead to a deadly result. Also, an Uber or Lyft driver simply taking their eyes off the road for a moment to check texts or social media can be disastrous. For example, if an Uber or Lyft driver is traveling approximately 50 mph, that same driver is traveling roughly 75 ft per second. If the driver looks down at his/her phone for 4 seconds, that driver would be traveling the length of a football field, essentially blindfolded. As a result, a severe collision can occur.
Worn tires; depleted brakes; a run-down engine; and other poor maintenance issues allow ride-share vehicles to break down and could potentially cause harm to passengers. While ride-share drivers are often deemed not to be employees of the ride-share company, the blame may be placed on the driver and not the company.
Collisions involving a ride-share driver can cause long-term and lifelong consequences. If you were injured by a ride-share driver, including Uber, Lyft, or other ride-share companies, contact the Chicago ride-share accident attorneys at Kaveny + Kroll to assist you in seeking answers, whether or not you are eligible for compensation.