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Kalmazoo Uber Shootings: Are Rideshare Programs Safe?

rideshare programs

Are rideshare programs like Uber really safe?

Extraordinar Limousine has often asked how safe rideshare programs like Uber really are. At no time has this question hit so close to home as now. A recent killing spree was conducted by Jason Brian Dalton, a Kalamazoo resident who works for Uber. Not only that, but the killer continued to pick up passengers in between killings. The driver killed 10 people over a seven hour period, seemingly at random. This story has shaken many Americans and caused us to question our safety. Not only is it terrifying that the targets had no logical connection to Dalton, but it is also unnerving that he continued to pick up passengers who were unknowingly in the presence of the wanted criminal. One passenger even asked Dalton directly if he was the killer, to which Dalton replied “No, I’m just tired. I’ve been driving for seven hours.”

How Safe is Uber?

According to the rideshare company, Dalton passed the required background check to become a driver. Police have no criminal record for Dalton, either. It can be argued that it was impossible to predict this erratic behavior, but there are definitely ways that this tragedy may have been prevented.

Most transportation companies–from limousines to taxis to freight trucks–have in-person managers who maintain constant supervision over their drivers. This ensures that drivers are consistently operating according to the standards of the company. It also provides a person for drivers to go to for questions, advice, and encouragement. Companies that have face-to-face management can keep a constant tab on drivers to make sure that they are providing consistently high-quality service, receiving up-to-date training, and are feeling happy in the workplace.

To become an Uber driver, all an individual must do is pass a background check. There is no driving test, and the drivers never meet face-to-face with any type of manager or supervisor. This creates a workplace where drivers are less regulated and can even feel encouraged to hide behind an apparent veil of anonymity created by the lack of personal interactions with management. Because there is little encouragement for good driving or repercussions for bad driving–aside from the rating system utilized by passengers–this adds to a lack of accountability that can lead a driver to feel that they can get away with bad behavior.

What is the Root Cause of the Danger of Rideshare Programs?

This tragic event has stuck in the imaginations of many. How can you be sure that a driver you’ve never met before will be safe? Hitchhiking has long died out in America due to the safety concerns of driving with a stranger. But is Uber really that much better? Many criminal drivers in hitchhiking stories have turned out to be seemingly normal before their crime, just like Dalton. Without any sort of supervision or authorities for Uber drivers to be beholden to, taking an Uber is just about the same as stepping into the car of a perfect stranger. We urge everyone to play it safe and refrain from using rideshare programs.

Call An Extraordinar Limousine Today!

Extraordinar Limousine Inc. is one of the most professional companies in the business. We have one of Maryland’s largest and most diverse selections of vehicles which enables us to provide our clients with the professional and reliable service they expect and deserve. Our commitment to customer satisfaction is what makes us successful. We provide safe, distinctive, comfortable, and reliable travel services in the Baltimore, Virginia, and D.C. areas. We only hire the best drivers and perform extensive background checks before ever letting them behind the wheel. Not all other services can say the same. To find out more about renting a vehicle from a reputable company, please call our office at 410-437-8200.

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