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Lyft’s first-ever security report reveals over 4,000 assaults between 2017-2019

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Warning: this story incorporates descriptions of sexual assault that some readers might discover disturbing.

Ten folks had been killed in bodily altercations and over 4,000 folks had been assaulted throughout Lyft rides from 2017-2019, the corporate revealed in its first-ever safety report. Additionally throughout that interval, 105 folks died in deadly car crashes involving a Lyft automotive.

The report was lengthy overdue, coming a minimum of two years after Lyft initially stated that it could be revealed. It represents the primary set of publicly accessible knowledge relating to the security of Lyft’s ride-hailing platform and the way it compares to nationwide US averages. The corporate is at present dealing with a number of lawsuits from victims of sexual assault and rape.

Whereas the numbers seem to color a darkish image of the ride-hailing trade, Lyft insists that critical incidents are “statistically uncommon” in its autos. “The kind of security incidents detailed on this report occurred on 0.0002 p.c of rides,” Jennifer Brandenburger, Head of Coverage Growth and Analysis, wrote in a blog post, “and properly over 99 p.c of all rides happen with none security report in any respect.”

Reviews of sexual assault in a Lyft journey elevated from 1,096 in 2017 to 1,807 in 2019. However the firm stated bookings elevated at the next price throughout that point, leading to a 19 p.c drop within the total incident price.

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“Whereas security incidents on our platform are extremely uncommon, we notice that even one is simply too many,” Brandenburger stated. “Behind each report is an actual individual and actual expertise, and our purpose is to make every Lyft journey as protected as we probably can.”

Journey-hailing corporations have lengthy struggled to maintain riders and drivers protected from each other. In its safety reports, Uber disclosed that 3,045 sexual assaults occurred on Uber journeys in 2018 and another 3,000 in 2019. Moreover, 9 folks had been murdered throughout Uber rides, and 58 folks died in auto-related crashes. Uber stated that drivers reported being victims of assaults at roughly the identical price as riders.

Lyft’s spin on the report, grim because the numbers could also be, is much like Uber’s take by itself knowledge. Lyft, which companies fewer journeys than Uber, didn’t disclose the overall variety of rides represented in its report, however at 0.0002 p.c, the incident price was the identical as Uber’s.

Driver teams criticized Lyft for an absence of consideration to security, particularly because it pertains to drivers. The report reveals that 10 drivers had been killed in deadly assaults. “Lyft frames these fatalities as anomalies,” the group Gig Staff Rising stated in an announcement. “The reality is ten individuals are {dead}. Their households are left with no help from Lyft.”

In 2019, 19 women sued Lyft for allegedly failing to forestall sexual assault perpetrated by drivers and for doing little to analyze the complaints. A California girl who says she was raped by a Lyft driver in 2017 additionally sued the company in September over failing to maintain riders protected, whereas 14 further girls sued Lyft earlier in September over its dealing with of sexual assault complaints.

Uber and Lyft each conduct background checks and say passenger security is their prime precedence. Additionally they have largely tried to deal with this difficulty via know-how updates, like in-app “panic buttons,” which let riders immediately dial 911, or ways to report a driver for unsafe activity.

Earlier this yr, the businesses joined collectively to announce a “first-of-its-kind” effort to share details about drivers who had been deactivated for committing critical offenses, together with bodily and sexual assault and homicide. Drivers are labeled as unbiased contractors, not workers, which means they’ll — and continuously do — drive for each corporations.

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