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Uber, Lyft Linked to Higher Rates of Pedestrian Accidents

Ride-sharing services such as Uber and Lyft became very popular very quickly over the past few years.  Although people are not using these services as much recently due to the COVID-19 crisis, ride-sharing will most likely make a comeback once the current shelter-in-place restrictions are lifted.

Uber and Lyft have been around since 2010, and the rise of these ride-sharing services has proved very useful in helping reduce the incidence of drunk driving accidents. However, the rate of other accidents, including pedestrian accidents involving these cars, has actually increased.

Uber and Lyft became very popular among people wanting safe rides back home. These ride-sharing services have been found to be especially useful in helping curb the number of drunk drivers on our streets. Uber allows riders to hail rides if they are too drunk to drive themselves home. That translates into safer options for a person to get home and a reduced chance of being involved in a drunk driving accident. The rates of alcohol-related accidents in several cities have dropped as a direct result of intoxicated persons being encouraged to use Uber rides that are so easily available.

But, the same drop in accident rates is not as evident when you consider other types of accidents. A group of researchers analyzed the rate of pedestrian accidents, and other accidents at popular Uber pick up and drop off zones, and found that there was actually an increase in accidents involving these cars and passengers in these areas.

The researchers analyzed close to 373 million rides between 2017 and 2018 at several areas in New York City. They looked at the locations of these crashes, and analyzed those figures compared to one week before and one week after the accidents. They found that the Uber and Lyft rides were linked to an increase in accidents injuring passengers and motorists. No comparable increase was seen for accidents involving taxicabs.

The researchers believe that distractions play a big role in this increased risk of accidents involving ride share services and Uber and Lyft.  Pedestrians are busy on their phones trying to guide the driver to their location, while the driver is busy with his GPS and cell phone. These distractions on both sides lead to an increased risk of accidents in these pick up and drop off zones.

The researchers advise that pickup and drop off zones be specified for these ride-share services in order to reduce the number of passengers trying to get in or exit a ride wherever they please.  Many times, passengers choose to get in or out of the car in high traffic areas, and this coupled with the distractions present, poses a serious risk to the safety of passengers as well as drivers. Having designated drop off and pickup zones, reduces the risk to both passengers as well as ride share drivers.

The Atlanta pedestrian accident attorneys at the Katz Law Firm represent persons injured as a result of car accidents in the metro Atlanta region and across Georgia. If you or a loved one has been involved in a pedestrian accident, contact an Atlanta pedestrian accident attorney at the Katz Law Firm, and discuss your chances for compensation through a car accident claim.  Initial consultations are free – you do not have to pay us until we recover compensation for you.

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