Rideshare Safety

Image result for uberThis winter, many of us will use cabs, buses, and rideshares to avoid cold walks, icy driving, or dangerous driving after consuming alcohol.  While buses and taxis are easily spotted — and have been around forever — how do we make sure we are safe when using a rideshare app like Uber or Lyft?  Bus and cab drivers are employees who pass background checks and are responsible to their respective companies.  Rideshare services don’t always have the same checks.

Keep these tips in mind to help keep you safe this winter.

  • Stay inside all warm and toasty until your ride arrives. Wait until the app shows that your diver has arrived to avoid standing outside alone in the cold and dark with your nice smartphone in your hand.
  • Make sure you are getting in the right car with the right driver — match up the license plate, car make and model, and driver photo with what’s provided in your app.
  • Ask, “who are you here to pick up?” Your driver can see your first name in their app.  Confirm they are there for you.
  • Sit in the back seat. Not only does it give your driver some personal space, but it allows you to exit either side to avoid traffic.
  • Wear your seat belt.
  • Seriously, wear your seat belt.
  • Most apps allow you to share your trip status, driver’s information, and location with friends and family. They will receive a text that tracks your trip and ETA.
  • Follow your instincts and intuition. If the hair on the back of your neck stands up, so should you.  Get out.  Simply say, “can you please pull over? I don’t feel comfortable with this.” It’s a safe, polite way to disengage from a ride.  Advocate for yourself!

Buses, cabs, and rideshare are great ways to navigate this Wisconsin winter wonderland.  Be kind to each other, and follow these quick tips for extra safety.