My Uber Driver Was in an Accident…Now What?
Uber drivers do not receive any special training prior to being able to pick up passengers and drive them to their destinations. They do not give interviews to Uber supervisors, prove their safe-driving abilities, pass any driving tests or get commercial driver’s licenses. In addition, Uber only looks into the applicant’s last seven years in terms of driving and criminal records.
Together, these factors culminate in an industry that cannot guarantee the safety of its passengers. Even as ridesharing continues to grow in popularity, users report Uber accidents daily. If your Uber driver gets into an accident in Virginia, you need to take certain steps to protect your rights as a rider. If you’ve been involved in an Uber accident, contact a Richmond Uber accident lawyer.
Tell the Driver to Pull Over
It is against the law in Virginia for any driver to leave the scene of an accident that causes injuries, deaths or property damage without first fulfilling certain duties of care. All drivers involved in the accident must stop as close to the site as is safely possible and exchange contact information with other drivers. If your Uber driver tries to flee the scene of an accident, demand he or she stop and go back. If the Uber driver does not comply, report him or her to the police for hit-and-run.
Check for Injuries
First, check yourself to see if you suffered any injuries in the Uber accident. Then, check others. Ask the Uber driver, other passengers and passengers in other vehicles if they have injuries or need assistance. Although this is technically the Uber driver’s duty of care in Virginia, doing so yourself can ensure injured victims get the help they need. Move to a safe place, away from the road, to check yourself and others for injuries. Remember some injuries may have delayed symptoms – especially if adrenaline is pumping through your veins from the collision. Before you assume you do not have an injury, see a doctor make sure.
Call the Police for Serious Accidents
The law in Virginia states to call the police to report an auto accident from the scene of the crash if it caused personal injuries, fatalities or over $1,000 in property damages. Your Uber driver should be the one to call the police after a serious accident. If no one else looks like they are going to call, however, you can report the wreck yourself. Never let an Uber driver convince you to keep a serious accident a secret from the police or Uber. Once an officer arrives, be sure to give him or her your side of the story for the official record.
Record Your Uber Accident
Start protecting your rights immediately after an Uber accident by documenting and recording the crash. Use your cellphone to take photographs and videos of the scene of the accident, your injuries, property damage and any other relevant factors, such as the food your distracted Uber driver was eating right before the crash. Write down a detailed description of events while they are still fresh in your mind, including the name of your Uber driver and a vehicle description. Screenshot photos of the Uber app where it has information about the driver and your trip.
Report the Crash to Uber
As soon as you can, report your crash to Uber. You can report a crash through the app or online. Share details and wait for an Uber representative to contact you. Answer the rep’s questions honestly, but do not admit fault for the accident or say you have no injuries until a doctor has examined you. Uber may be looking for ways to dispute liability from the very beginning of your claim.
Uber has a $1 million insurance policy to cover passengers’ damages after accidents, regardless of who was at fault. If Uber denies your claim or tries to undervalue your injuries, however, you may need a lawyer’s assistance in demanding fair compensation. An Uber accident attorney could walk you through the claims process while protecting your rights as a passenger.