The U.S. ride-hailing service company Uber released the first safety report on Wednesday. The report shows that between 2017 and 2018, Uber experienced nearly 500 rape cases during the ride-hailing service in the US market. In addition, the report revealed that there were 19 fatal attacks on ride-hailing services in the US market over the past two years.
After dozens of allegations of sexual assault on Uber drivers, Uber promised in May 2018 to issue a “safe and transparent report” that released detailed data on sexual assault incidents involving the company’s ride-hailing service in the US market. A year and a half later, Uber finally released the report.
In this 84-page report, Uber said that 99.9% of ride-hailing services in the US market did not report any safety issues at the end, and 0.1% of ride-hailing services mostly reported minor safety issues, such as Problems such as sudden braking. Only 0.0003% of the U.S. market ride-hailing services experienced a “serious safety” accident.
Among these serious incidents, there were a total of 464 rape cases between 2017 and 2018. In 2018 alone, 235 rape cases were involved, with an average of 4 per week. In the past two years, Uber has also experienced more than 5,500 sexual assaults in ride-hailing services in the US market, including everything from forced kisses to attempted rape. The most common sexual assault is obscenity, with 1,440 reports in 2017 and 1,560 reports in 2018.
“It’s not easy to proactively publish a report that discusses similarly difficult security issues,” Uber’s chief legal officer Tony West wrote in a blog post. “Most companies avoid issues such as sexual violence, because doing so risks incurring negative news and public criticism. But we think it’s time for a new approach.”
The report said Uber drivers were also victims of the attack 45 percent of the time. But in rape cases, 92% of the victims were passengers. Uber has also reported 19 non-lethal assaults in the past two years.
West said in an interview: “Every incident represents a person who has suffered terrible trauma. But I am not surprised by these numbers. I am not surprised because I know that sexual violence in society is greater What most people think is much more general. “
Hundreds of passengers and drivers have stepped forward in the past few years to accuse them of being sexually assaulted while riding. Some have filed a lawsuit against Uber, claiming to have been raped, abducted and molested by Uber drivers. Uber rival Lyft has been similarly charged. Since August last year, at least 56 women have filed a lawsuit against Lyft, alleging sexual assault by the driver during the ride.
Lyft also promised a security report in May 2018, but it’s unclear when. A company spokesman said the company remains committed to writing the report. “Lyft’s goal is to make carpooling the safest means of transportation for every American,” she said.
Uber said in its report that more than 1 million potential drivers failed its background checks in 2017 and 2018. More than 40,000 drivers have been removed from the company app since the ongoing background check was launched in 2018. Supporters of some victims said Uber could also take more background checks, such as requiring drivers to take fingerprints, but Uber has always opposed this.
On Thursday, local time, several advocacy groups praised Uber for publishing the data. Karen Baker, chief executive of the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, said in an email, “As an advocate for the past 20 years, Welcome to this unprecedented report. “” By making this data public, Uber is facing these challenges, rather than avoiding or minimizing those numbers. “
To combat sexual assault during ride-hailing services, Uber has added several security features to its app over the past year. These features include: Ride Check will send push notifications to drivers and passengers when there is an unexpected long stop on the road; in-transit reports allow passengers to report accidents before the end of the trip; SMS to 911 functions can send alarms to send location information, car models and license plates.
West said Uber is taking more steps to reduce the number of serious security incidents. One of them is sharing information about disabled drivers with other ride-hailing companies like Lyft. The other is to create a unique ride verification system using a four-digit password for each passenger. Uber said it will also continue to issue security reports every two years.
“Of course, it’s not just Uber’s business,” West wrote in a blog. “Security should never be a family thing, and our goal is to make the impact go beyond our own company.