Ride sharing services are offering eastern Virginia a new and more affordable transportation solution, but controversy is swirling around the legality and safety of these services. This battle reached a new level earlier this week when the Virginia Department of Transportation ordered two of the ride sharing industry’s top providers to halt services in the area immediately.
Uber and Lyft both operate by having patrons sign up and download the company’s application to a smartphone. Users are then matched with available drivers and vehicles in their area. A suggested payment is then offered and the user can decide how much they would like to pay their driver.
While the service sounds great, many are concerned there is a grey area in liability coverage in the event the ride sharing vehicle is involved in an accident. WAVYTV 10 News explains officials say these companies should have to meet the same authority requirements as cab drivers since money is being exchanged for a ride; however, the companies argue that each driver is required to provide their own liability coverage, which absolves the company of responsibility if a crash happens.
The state is currently conducting research into the use of technology in transportation and its effects on Virginia car accident numbers. Until conclusions are drawn though, companies will have to comply with the current state laws.
The team of Norfolk personal injury lawyers with Lowell “The Hammer” Stanley appreciate the convenience and value ride-sharing services offer, but want to ensure the public is safe and covered in the event of a car accident. If you’ve been injured in a car accident while using a ride sharing service such as Lyft or Uber, contact us to see how we can help.