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Ridesharing Accidents and Lawsuits on the Rise Nationwide

Oct 10, 2019 Mountain View / CA / USA - Lyft and UBER stickers on the rear window of a vehicle offering rides in San Francisco Bay Area

Uber and Lyft lawsuits are rising due to a concerning uptick in traffic accidents associated with ridesharing usage. 

A recent $63 million lawsuit gaining national attention involves a Boston man left paralyzed and confined to a wheelchair after an Uber accident. According to The Street, the man was a passenger in an Uber on April 30, 2021, when the driver suddenly made a sharp turn. The vehicle slammed into a parked car and threw the passenger back into his headrest, causing paralyzing and permanent injuries. 

The lawsuit was filed against Uber, citing negligence and alleging that the company knowingly hired a driver with a poor driving history. Motor vehicle records showed the Uber driver had around 20 driving violations at the time of the accident, some dating back to 1996 requesting a repeat driver’s training courses. 

Risk Factors Leading to Uber and Lyft Accidents

Sadly, ridesharing accidents have increased steadily in New York City since it became legal in 2017. As Uber and Lyft apps grow in demand, more drivers join the race, further increasing the chances of motor vehicle accidents. 

Unlike the average motorist, ridesharing drivers get paid more the more often they drive. This incentive leads app drivers to make risky maneuvers to pick up more riders faster, despite the dangers of congested metropolitan roads. 

The most common causes of ridesharing accidents include: 

  • Illegal turns and lane changes
  • Double parking 
  • Speeding 
  • Quick accelerations and sudden braking 
  • Neglecting to use turn signals
  • Failure to stop or yield 
  • Driving while texting or checking an app 

In addition, most Uber and Lyft drivers are hustling 24/7 or driving as a second job; this puts ridesharing drivers at elevated risk for distracted driving and fatigued driving accidents, especially when driving at night or in conditions with reduced visibility. 

Ridesharing Trends Causing Increase in Traffic Fatalities 

In a 2019 study by the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, researchers found an associated link between ridesharing apps and a consistent annual increase of traffic fatalities across the country, a rise of approximately 3 percent. 

Using staggered roll-out dates, researchers reviewed eight quarters of driving statistics before and after adopting ridesharing apps in major cities between 2011 and 2016. The study analyzed transportation choices, accident rates, and traffic volume, while separating accidents involving ridesharing vehicles.

In 2022, safety experts expect ridesharing app usage to increase further, especially in the continued push to reduce impaired and drunk driving accidents. An increase in ridesharing vehicles will result in more competition to secure rides and income, elevating the risk of reckless driving accidents.  

How to Sue After an Uber or Lyft Accident 

Similar to other motor vehicle accidents, if you are injured in a ridesharing accident, you may be eligible to sue for compensation to cover the damages sustained. Injured parties can be passengers of the ridesharing vehicle or a driver/passenger of another vehicle involved in an accident due to negligence. 

Every minute after an Uber or Lyft accident is crucial to your case. Knowing the steps to take after an accident can greatly increase your chances of a successful lawsuit, regardless of how severe your injuries are. These steps include: 

  • Seeking medical attention immediately after your accident while keeping track of all doctors, services, and medical appointments. 
  • Filing an accident report with local police and the ridesharing company, as well as obtaining copies of the reports for your records. 
  • Documenting the accident and any relevant information, with written accounts, pictures, videos, and witness statements. 
  • Obtaining all contact information from the ridesharing driver, including their ridesharing identification. 
  • Consulting with a Ridesharing Accident Attorney to discuss your options.

Consulting with an experienced attorney who understands the constructs of an Uber and Lyft accident case is essential. Multiple parties could be involved in your accident (driver, ridesharing company, insurance company) who will all be trying to place blame on the other. Having an attorney who knows the pitfalls that clients often fall into in these cases will help you file a successful claim to secure the compensation you deserve. 

Pazer Epstein Jaffe Fein & Gozenput, P.C. NYC Ridesharing Accident Attorneys

At the law firm of Pazer Epstein Jaffe Fein & Gozenput, P.C., we have been fighting for New York City victims injured in negligent motor vehicle accidents for over 60 years. If you or a loved one has sustained a serious injury in a ridesharing accident, our experienced trial attorneys are here to help. 

Contact us for a free consultation anytime through our online form or call 212-227-1212 to review your case and your rights.

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