5 things to keep you safe when using a rideshare service


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Using a rideshare service like Lyft and Uber is becoming all too common place however there are mounting dangers and cautions a person needs to exercise when using this type of service.


For example, San Luis Obispo Tribune reported, “Alfonso Alarcon-Nunez was a 40-year-old serial rapist that worked as an Uber driver. He would escort intoxicated female riders into their homes and sexually assault them and then burglarized them.”


As reported by the Mercury News, “Recently, a Vallejo woman claims in a new lawsuit that her Lyft driver pulled into a dark lane, stopped the car and locked the doors, forcing her to flee out the vehicle’s window.”


Adding that “Uber admitted in 2019 that thousands of sexual assaults had been reported during rides.”


So, the need to be cautious when using these rideshare services is very real.


Here are 5 things to keep you safe when using a rideshare service.


  1. Tell a friend


Be sure to tell a friend or relative when you are taking a rideshare service. Send them the license plate, name of drive as well as make a model of the car via text message or instant messaging. Be sure to include when the location you are being picked up from and it’s destination. Be sure to also include the time of pick up and estimated drop off time. This ensures that someone always knows where you are, who you’re with and where you’re going. In most cases all of that information can be copied and pasted from the app.


2. Stay alert


Instead of looking down on your phone be sure to stay alert to the route your drive is taking. If he is making needless turns or not following the recommended GPS, do not be afraid to call 911 and give them all the information of the driver. Include their license plate, name, service you're using, etc. When the driver hears you making the call, they will be sure to change their devious plans in a heartbeat.


3. Check child lock before getting in


Before you get in the car, check the side of the car door and make sure the child lock is not on. You can quickly test it if you ask the driver to roll down the window before you get in the car. Unlock the door and try to open it in from the inside with your hand through the window. If it does not open, ask the driver to come around and take off the child lock. Be sure to ask him why it’s on in the first place. If it is on, we encourage you to cancel that ride and notify the company why you are canceling the ride and requesting a new one.


4. Hop on the phone with a fried during the ride


While driving in the car, hop on a call with a friend or relative and be sure to let them know the name of your driver, their car color, license plate number and where they picked you up from. When the driver hears that you are telling others about the car and them, they will know that their moves are being tracked and that people are aware of it. If the driver starts to complain about you giving details this may be a good indication they are up to no good. Be sure to report them to their company after the incident.


5. Call a friend if you are not sober


It is not wise or safe to use a rideshare service when you are not sober. As the story in the beginning of this section shows, some drives may try to take advantage of someone in this state. That being the case, be sure to arrange for a friend to pick you up if you have been drinking.


Offer to give them gas money! So not only are you with someone you trust but you are supporting your friend financially.


However, a word of caution here. Some people who claim to be friends are NOT really friends. So, be sure that you really know the person before you ask them for a ride home. Remember that most sexual assault perpetrators are those who knew their victims personally.


This reminds me of that time a very beautiful young lady was waiting at the bus stop when someone she knew offered her a ride. She took the ride and a short time later she either jumped or was thrown from a moving car while on the highway. She was struck by oncoming traffic and died from her injuries. Although the case was never really solved it does underscore the need to know the person you are getting a ride from.


Here are a list of reported incidents involving Lyft & Uber drivers taken from AtChisontranSport.com



Alleged Assaults by Uber and Lyft Drivers


London Woman ‘Dragged Down Street After Driver Demanded Cash to Return her Phone’ (7/19/16) Uber Driver Threatens Gay Atlanta Men with Gun (7/1/16) Atlanta Uber Driver Accused of Hitting Passengers with Car (7/1/16) Chicago Lyft Driver Groped, Threatened to ‘F— Up’ Passenger, Prosecutors Say (6/28/16) Los Angeles Rider Says Uber Driver Stole His iPhone, Threatened To Attack Him (6/20/16) Female Passenger was Attacked by Two Men Who Did Not Realise they Would Have to Share a Ride with her After Using the UberPool Car Service in London (6/13/16) Woman says Dispute with Uber Driver Turned Violent in Yeadon, Pennsylvania (6/3/16) Uber driver arrested for attempting to shoot officers in Montgomery County, Maryland (5/26/16) An Uber Driver Has Been Charged With Strangling a University of Delaware Student in a Dorm Parking Lot (5/23/16) Arizona Uber Driver Arrested After Slashing Passenger (04/18/16) Uber Driver in Los Angeles Arraigned on Theft and Assault Charges (01/28/16) Uber Driver Accused of Aggravated Assault and Misdemeanor Battery After Pulling a Gun on Manatee County, Florida Passenger (01/26/16) Uber Driver Allegedly Assaults Cincinnati Woman (01/18/16) California Woman Says Uber Driver Broke Her Jaw (01/13/16) Woman Allegedly Punched in the Face and Racially Abused by her Uber Driver in Addiscombe, South London, UK (11/30/15) Passenger Hit in the Face by Uber Driver in Indianapolis (11/20/15) Australian Woman Allegedly Attacked by her Uber Driver Suffers a Broken Leg and Blood Clot from the Ordeal (9/8/15) A Los Angeles Woman Says Her Uber Driver Threw Her onto the Street (6/4/15) Denver Uber Driver Allegedly Drove Woman to Airport, then Went Back to Rob Her Home (4/1/15) Hiring a Lyft: Uber Safe or Uber Dangerous? (Santa Monica, CA) (3/18/15) Boston Uber Driver Charged with Indecent Assault and Battery (2/9/15) Alleged Assault by Chicago Uber Driver (12/10/14) San Francisco Passenger Struck In Head with Hammer by UberX Driver (9/30/14) Uber Driver Pulls Gun on Valet in Atlanta (9/8/14) Philadelphia Uber Driver Beat Model, Pushed Earring through Skin in Traffic Jam (7/14/14) Uber Driver Punches Passenger in Oklahoma (6/3/14) Lyft Driver Attacks Pedestrian in San Francisco (1/14/14) San Francisco Uber Customer Claims Abuse and Assault by Uber Driver (11/25/13) Lyft Driver Brandishes Knife in Los Angeles (10/29/13) Writer and Activist Reports Being Choked in DC; Uber Denies the Event and Responsibility (9/16/13) Uber Customer Sues for $2M over Alleged Driver Stabbing in DC (9/8/13) DC Uber Driver Allegedly Assaults Passenger for Burping (3/8/13)


Alleged Sexual Assaults and Harassment Incidents by Uber and Lyft Drivers


Uber Driver Arrested for Sexual Assault in Palo Alto (7/23/16) West Hollywood Woman Sues Uber for Negligence after Being Raped by Driver (7/22/16) Chicago Uber Driver Charged in Sexual Assault of Intoxicated Passenger (7/15/16) Massachusetts Uber Driver Accused of Harassing, Groping Female Passenger (7/6/16) Uber Driver Faces Charges of Sex Assault on Woman in Orlando (6/29/16) Uber Driver Charged Following Sexual Assault of Boy in Oshawa, Canada: Police (6/15/16) Woman Says Uber Driver Molested Her in Utah (6/9/16) Uber Drivers Accused of 32 Rapes and Sex Attacks on London Passengers Over the Past Year (5/19/16) Mexico City Uber Driver Arrested for Allegedly Raping and Robbing Passenger (5/9/16) Woman Claims Uber Driver Sexually Assaulted Her During Ride to North Salt Lake City (5/4/16) Seattle Uber, Lyft Drivers Investigated for Sexual Assault (4/28/16) Toronto Uber Driver Charged With Sexual Assault (4/27/16) Honolulu Uber Driver Arrested and Charged with Sex Assault (4/20/16) Raleigh, NC Uber Driver Arrested and Charged with Sexual Battery (4/1/16) San Diego Uber Driver Charged with Rape of an Intoxicated Person, Faces 8 Years in Prison (3/30/16) Two East Lansing, Michigan, Uber Drivers Charged with Criminal Sexual Assault (3/18/16) Uber Driver Charged with Felony Forcible Rape and Two Other Felony Sex-Related Offenses Against Passenger in Orange County, California (3/17/16) Guleph, Ontario, Uber driver charged with sexual assault (3/14/16) Grand jury indicts Murfreesboro, TN, Uber driver on two counts of aggravated rape and two counts of rape (3/14/16) Seattle-area Lyft and Uber driver accused of trying to sexually assault a passenger charged with attempted rape (3/11/16) Brooklyn Uber Driver Exposes Himself To, Sexually Assaults Passenger (2/29/16) Woman in Henry County, GA, Accuses Uber Driver of Attacking, Groping Her (2/29/16) Police Say 2 Students At Michigan State University Have Been Sexually Assaulted by a Rideshare Driver (2/26/16) University of North Florida Student Files Suit for Battery After Alleging Her Lyft Driver Groped Her (2/12/16) Uber Driver Arrested for Allegedly Molesting Journalist in Delhi, India (1/22/16) Lyft Passenger in Jacksonville, FL, Granted Temporary Injunction to Protect Her From Stalking By Driver Who Allegedly Sexually Assaulted Her (1/18/16) Uber Passenger Sues Driver for Sexual Assaulted and Battery, False Imprisonment, Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress and Negligence in Los Angeles (1/18/16) Uber Driver Indicted for One Count of Rape, Two Counts of Indecent Assault and Battery on a Person Over 14 and One Count of Assault to Rape on Cape Cod (1/8/16) Uber Driver Sexually Assaults Athens, GA, Customer in Burglary of Her Home, Police Say (1/7/16) Uber Driver Arrested in Connection with Scottsdale, AZ, Sexual Assault Against Teen Passenger (1/1/16) Dozens of Students Accuse Uber Driver of Harassment, Intimidation in Geuleph, Canada (11/26/15) Kansas City, MO, Police Report 7 Sexual Assaults by Ride-hailing Drivers Since 2014 (11/23/15) Los Angeles Uber Driver Accused of Sexual Battery after Allegedly Groping USC Student (11/22/15) Uber Driver Accused of Sexually Assaulting a Passenger in Denver, CO (11/19/15) Lyft Driver Held at $1 Million Bond After Allegedly Raping Passenger in Dallas, TX (11/16/15) Austin, TX Police Investigating 7 Cases of Alleged Sexual Assault by Uber, Lyft Drivers (11/13/15) British Uber Driver Gets 8 Months in Jail For Sexually Assaulting a Passenger (11/5/15) San Diego Lawsuit: Lyft Driver Groped Passenger (10/30/15) ‘Ridesharing’ Driver Charged with Allegedly Raping a British Tourist in Sydney, Australia (10/22/15) Community Advocacy Director at Austin, Texas Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence Prevention and Counseling NonprofitSafePlace Testifies the Organization Has Counseled 4 Victims of Sexual Assault by TNC Drivers in 3 Months (10/16/15) Uber Driver Sought for Alleged Sexual Assault in Toronto in June, 2015 (9/25/15) Toronto Uber Driver Accused of Sexually Assaulting a Passenger in His Vehicle (9/17/15) Woman in Ohio Allegedly Sexually Assaulted by Uber Driver (9/10/15) Uber Driver in New Jersey Accused of Raping a Female Customer (8/28/15) An Uber Driver in China Charged with Robbery and Rape (8/26/15) Philadelphia Uber Driver Accused of Rape in June Loses Bail Request (8/12/15) Uber Driver Accused of Kidnapping and Raping a Female Passenger in South Carolina (8/12/15) Uber Driver Charged with Sexual Battery in Virginia (8/6/15) Uber Driver Accused of Sexual Assault in Dallas (8/1/15) Uber Driver Allegedly Caught Masturbating In Front of Female Passenger in India (7/22/15) Uber Driver Linked by DNA Evidence, Witness Accounts to Five Other Sexual Assaults in Boston between 2006 and 2010(7/14/15) Uber Driver in Chicago Allegedly Exposes Himself to a Female Passenger, Uber Admits He Should Have Failed Background Check (6/26/15) Virginia Mother Alleges Uber Driver Molested Her 13-year-old Daughter (6/16/15) Lyft Driver in Seattle Allegedly Drags Customer Behind Car After Demanding Sex (6/5/15) Uber Driver in New Jersey Fondles Himself in Backseat with Female Passenger (6/3/15) Uber New Delhi Molestation Case: Uber Cab Driver Suspended After He Molested Female Passenger in Gurgaon (6/1/15) Mississauga, Canada, Uber driver is facing a charge of sexual assault after allegedly assaulting a female passenger (5/20/15) University of Southern California Student Says Uber Driver Raped Her After Party (5/1/15) New York Woman Says Uber Driver Grabbed, Assaulted Her (4/30/15) Wisconsin Woman Tells Police Uber Driver Inappropriately Touched Her (4/27/15) Houston Uber Driver Accused of Rape Started Work After 14 Years in Federal Prison (4/7/15) Houston Uber Driver Accused of Sexually Assaulting Customer (4/2/15) Uber Driver Arrested on Sexual Assault Charges in Paris (3/25/15) Philadelphia Woman Says She Was Raped and Kidnapped by an UberX Driver (3/24/15) Uber Driver Investigated After Alleged Sexual Assault in Mar Vista, California (2/3/15) Chicago Uber Driver Charged with Sexual Assault, Unlawful Restraint and kidnapping of 21-year-old male passenger (1/14/15) Uber Driver Arrested Over Alleged Sexual Assault in Melbourne, Australia (1/10/15) London Uber Driver Asks Rider for Oral Sex (12/11/14) Uber Driver in India Accused of Rape (12/8/14) Orlando Uber Passenger Allegedly Touched by Uber Driver (9/25/14) Three San Francisco Women Say Uber Driver Sexually Harassed Them (9/25/14) DC Uber Driver Accused of Molesting Rider (7/28/14) Uber Driver Charged with Fondling Passenger in Chicago (4/10/14) New York-based Journalist Sexually Harassed and Stalked by Uber Driver (3/28/14) DC Uber Driver Arrested for Alleged Rape but Not Charged Despite Strong Evidence (9/14/13) “Rideshare” Driver Sends Seemingly Endless Amount of Creepy Text Messages to Rider (7/16/13)

Honolulu Uber Driver Arrested and Charged with Sex Assault (4/20/16) Raleigh, NC Uber Driver Arrested and Charged with Sexual Battery (4/1/16) San Diego Uber Driver Charged with Rape of an Intoxicated Person, Faces 8 Years in Prison (3/30/16) Two East Lansing, Michigan, Uber Drivers Charged with Criminal Sexual Assault (3/18/16) Uber Driver Charged with Felony Forcible Rape and Two Other Felony Sex-Related Offenses Against Passenger in Orange County, California (3/17/16) Guleph, Ontario, Uber driver charged with sexual assault (3/14/16) Grand jury indicts Murfreesboro, TN, Uber driver on two counts of aggravated rape and two counts of rape (3/14/16) Seattle-area Lyft and Uber driver accused of trying to sexually assault a passenger charged with attempted rape (3/11/16) Brooklyn Uber Driver Exposes Himself To, Sexually Assaults Passenger (2/29/16) Woman in Henry County, GA, Accuses Uber Driver of Attacking, Groping Her (2/29/16) Police Say 2 Students At Michigan State University Have Been Sexually Assaulted by a Rideshare Driver (2/26/16) University of North Florida Student Files Suit for Battery After Alleging Her Lyft Driver Groped Her (2/12/16) Uber Driver Arrested for Allegedly Molesting Journalist in Delhi, India (1/22/16) Lyft Passenger in Jacksonville, FL, Granted Temporary Injunction to Protect Her From Stalking By Driver Who Allegedly Sexually Assaulted Her (1/18/16) Uber Passenger Sues Driver for Sexual Assaulted and Battery, False Imprisonment, Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress and Negligence in Los Angeles (1/18/16) Uber Driver Indicted for One Count of Rape, Two Counts of Indecent Assault and Battery on a Person Over 14 and One Count of Assault to Rape on Cape Cod (1/8/16) Uber Driver Sexually Assaults Athens, GA, Customer in Burglary of Her Home, Police Say (1/7/16) Uber Driver Arrested in Connection with Scottsdale, AZ, Sexual Assault Against Teen Passenger (1/1/16) Dozens of Students Accuse Uber Driver of Harassment, Intimidation in Geuleph, Canada (11/26/15) Kansas City, MO, Police Report 7 Sexual Assaults by Ride-hailing Drivers Since 2014 (11/23/15) Los Angeles Uber Driver Accused of Sexual Battery after Allegedly Groping USC Student (11/22/15) Uber Driver Accused of Sexually Assaulting a Passenger in Denver, CO (11/19/15) Lyft Driver Held at $1 Million Bond After Allegedly Raping Passenger in Dallas, TX (11/16/15) Austin, TX Police Investigating 7 Cases of Alleged Sexual Assault by Uber, Lyft Drivers (11/13/15) British Uber Driver Gets 8 Months in Jail For Sexually Assaulting a Passenger (11/5/15) Lyft and Lyft Driver Sued by San Diego Passenger for Alleged Sexual Battery, Gender Violence, Civil Rights Violations and Negligence (10/30/15) ‘Ridesharing’ Driver Charged with Allegedly Raping a British Tourist in Sydney, Australia (10/22/15) Community Advocacy Director at Austin, Texas Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence Prevention and Counseling NonprofitSafePlace Testifies the Organization Has Counseled 4 Victims of Sexual Assault by TNC Drivers in 3 Months (10/16/15) Uber Driver Sought for Alleged Sexual Assault in Toronto in June, 2015 (9/25/15) Toronto Uber Driver Accused of Sexually Assaulting a Passenger in His Vehicle (9/17/15) Woman in Ohio Allegedly Sexually Assaulted by Uber Driver (9/10/15) Uber Driver in New Jersey Accused of Raping a Female Customer (8/28/15) An Uber Driver in China Charged with Robbery and Rape (8/26/15) Philadelphia Uber Driver Accused of Rape in June Loses Bail Request (8/12/15) Uber Driver Accused of Kidnapping and Raping a Female Passenger in South Carolina (8/12/15) Uber Driver Charged with Sexual Battery in Virginia (8/6/15) Uber Driver Accused of Sexual Assault in Dallas (8/1/15) Uber Driver Allegedly Caught Masturbating In Front of Female Passenger in India (7/22/15) Uber Driver Linked by DNA Evidence, Witness Accounts to Five Other Sexual Assaults in Boston between 2006 and 2010(7/14/15) Uber Driver in Chicago Allegedly Exposes Himself to a Female Passenger, Uber Admits He Should Have Failed Background Check (6/26/15) Virginia Mother Alleges Uber Driver Molested Her 13-year-old Daughter (6/16/15) Lyft Driver in Seattle Allegedly Drags Customer Behind Car After Demanding Sex (6/5/15) Uber Driver in New Jersey Fondles Himself in Backseat with Female Passenger (6/3/15) Uber New Delhi Molestation Case: Uber Cab Driver Suspended After He Molested Female Passenger in Gurgaon (6/1/15) Mississauga, Canada, Uber driver is facing a charge of sexual assault after allegedly assaulting a female passenger (5/20/15) University of Southern California Student Says Uber Driver Raped Her After Party (5/1/15) New York Woman Says Uber Driver Grabbed, Assaulted Her (4/30/15) Wisconsin Woman Tells Police Uber Driver Inappropriately Touched Her (4/27/15) Houston Uber Driver Accused of Rape Started Work After 14 Years in Federal Prison (4/7/15) Houston Uber Driver Accused of Sexually Assaulting Customer (4/2/15) Uber Driver Arrested on Sexual Assault Charges in Paris (3/25/15) Philadelphia Woman Says She Was Raped and Kidnapped by an UberX Driver (3/24/15) Uber Driver Investigated After Alleged Sexual Assault in Mar Vista, California (2/3/15) Chicago Uber Driver Charged with Sexual Assault, Unlawful Restraint and kidnapping of 21-year-old male passenger (1/14/15) Uber Driver Arrested Over Alleged Sexual Assault in Melbourne, Australia (1/10/15) London Uber Driver Asks Rider for Oral Sex (12/11/14) Uber Driver in India Accused of Rape (12/8/14) Orlando Uber Passenger Allegedly Touched by Uber Driver (9/25/14) Three San Francisco Women Say Uber Driver Sexually Harassed Them (9/25/14) DC Uber Driver Accused of Molesting Rider (7/28/14) Uber Driver Charged with Fondling Passenger in Chicago (4/10/14) New York-based Journalist Sexually Harassed and Stalked by Uber Driver (3/28/14) DC Uber Driver Arrested for Alleged Rape but Not Charged Despite Strong Evidence (9/14/13) “Rideshare” Driver Sends Seemingly Endless Amount of Creepy Text Messages to Rider (7/16/13)


Alleged Kidnappings by Uber Drivers


Philadelphia Woman Says She Was Raped and Kidnapped by an UberX Driver (3/24/15) Uber Driver Takes NYC Woman on Nightmare $293 Zigzagging Odyssey (12/13/14) Los Angeles Woman Claims Uber Driver Kidnapped Rider; Uber Claims “Inefficient Route” (10/14/14) DC Uber Driver Takes Riders on High Speed Chase (7/9/14) Driver Allegedly Kidnaps Drunk Woman in LA (6/3/14)