Uber's New Safety Features Will Make You Feel So Much Better During Your Ride
Let's be real, driving is the worst. I, for one, would much rather ditch the driver's seat in place of a backseat with some air conditioning, especially during the summer. Lucky for me, Uber's new safety features guarantee that I'll be enjoying my hot summer days without worrying where my next ride will be.
Uber may have been birthed in 2009, but nearly 10 years later the developments just keep coming. On April 12, Uber Technologies' CEO Dara Khosrowshahi announced on the company's website that the app would be introducing some new safety features.
So what exactly are these features? Well according to Khosrowshahi, the new changes are intended to "double down" on the app's safety and "help shape its next chapter." To do this, Uber is introducing a few new safety features including direct access to 911, connecting riders to outside contacts more easily, and sharing some helpful information about safety. Plus, the company plans to tighten up its background policy to make sure every driver and vehicle checks out. According to the company, the worldwide car sharing service plans to unveil these new features to its riders come summer.
I have to say, this is perfect considering all the Ubers I plan on hailing to avoid driving in heat-drenched traffic. With these features, you truly don't have any excuse not to call an Uber. Not sold yet? Here's a full rundown of the upcoming features.
Riders Will Basically Have 911 On Speed Dial
So you've got the knowledge and the backup on your side, but in a worst-case scenario there's always 911. According to Uber, the company is emphasizing easier access to the emergency number, and that includes a button that will directly connect riders to 911. In addition, Uber has partnered with RapidSOS so if riders press the emergency button, then their location and trip details will be automatically sent to the responding dispatcher. Plus, Uber's partnership with National Emergency Number Association will make sure riders' calls are sent to the most convenient and correct 911 dispatcher.
A collective sigh of relief fills the room. Even though no one wants to have to make a call to 911, better safe than sorry.
The Trusted Contacts List Lets Riders Share Travel Deets With Their Besties
Having direct contact to 911 is definitely a great feature, but that's usually the worst case scenario. For those like me who want to keep their pals up to date on their ETA, riders will be able to select five people to be a part of their Trusted Contacts list. This list will let the rider chat and share details about their trip with those loved ones. No more group texts full of everyone promising to say when they're home safe, but then forgetting and falling asleep!
For those who really are only nervous Uber-ing at night, there's also a night time sharing option that'll let riders only share their trip during the evening. Don't worry, you don't have to tell them you're running a few minutes late.
Uber Plans To Tighten Up Its Background Check Process
Since Uber started in 2009, the company has prided itself on "thorough and fair" routine background checks and screening processes for both drivers and vehicles. However, many times screening processes aren't perfect, and that's why the company is planning on giving its procedure a boost.
According to Khosrowshahi, Uber will start conducting annual reruns of drivers and motor vehicles' background checks. This will work with the latest safety development Uber also plans to launch, which will identify when drivers obtain new criminal offenses to their record.
You hear that drivers? You better behave yourselves.
Riders Will Be Able To Learn More About Safety
According to Khosrowshahi, the new features will include a dedicated Safety Center in the app, directly accessible from the home screen, where riders can learn more about safety information. The center will include community guidelines, safety tips built in partnership with law enforcement, insurance protections, and the driver screening process. This basically means that any question you might have about safety, Uber's got your back.
With all these new safety features it looks like Uber is really getting its glow up ready for summer.
As the weather starts to (finally) thaw out and those blessed rays of sunshine cast upon us, I look forward to requesting that car and hitting the road. Hopefully in a convertible.