Uber: Stay safe while riding

Rachel Adams

Car services like Uber and Lyft are becoming increasingly popular, as convenient ways for people to get around town. However, with this growing trend comes additional dangers.

According to WTOC, in May, Matthew James Chalkley of Statesboro turned himself into the Bulloch County Sheriff’s Office after a warrant for his arrest was issued for the sexual assault of a 19-year-old female. Chalkley picked her and a friend up, claiming to be their Uber driver, and later allegedly assaulted the female at her residence.

alledgelyAs Uber becomes more popular, safety also becomes more important, as there are people who will try to take advantage of the system to harm others. The Uber website and Atlanta Journal Constitution and have many tips on what a rider can do to stay safe when using Uber.

  • Request your driver and wait for them indoors. This helps the rider avoid having to stand outside alone while waiting for the driver.
  • Confirm that the driver is yours. The Uber app allows the user to see the name of the driver, the driver’s photo, and the make of the driver’s car.
  • Make sure your friends and family know where you are and where you are going. In the Uber app, there is a “Share status” option that allows the rider to share their location and driver’s details with anyone they want and allow that person to track them without using the app.
  • Do not ride in the front seat. This can help prevent events of unwanted behavior, touching, and assault while in the car.
  • The buddy system is key. Traveling in groups whenever possible increases rider safety.
  • Use your intuition. Uber recommends that the rider immediately call 911 if they feel that they are in an emergency situation.

When using Uber and other similar services, it is imperative to stay safe and aware.

Rachel Adams, The George-Anne Daily Reporter, ganews@georgiasouthern.edu