Uber and Lyft have become some of the most popular transportation companies in Washington, with rideshares being used by 3.5 times more people than taxis in Seattle. While most rides are uneventful, a study from the University of Chicago and Rice University uncovered that ride-sharing services are behind a 2% to 3% increase in traffic deaths across the country since 2011. This increase is concerning, especially to those who use the service regularly.
It is because of this increase in car accidents involving rideshares that the Seattle Times reached out to our experienced lawyers for tips for their readers.
In The Seattle Times article, Bernard Law Group personal injury lawyer Viivi M. Vanderslice explained that riders should always be prepared when taking rideshares.
While injuries may not appear severe at first glance, the physical, emotional, and financial impact of a crash may be felt for years to come. Writing down important information about the crash, taking photos, and gathering contact information from potential witnesses are all essential steps in making sure that you get the justice you deserve.
“Write down the rideshare driver’s info,” Vanderslice advised. “If there’s information in their car, take a photo of it.”
Also, never forget to take a photograph of the drivers involved and their vehicles’ license plates.
Unfortunately, she told The Seattle Times, many victims suffer for not paying attention to these details.
In a case she’s currently working on, Vanderslice said, the police were unable to identify who the driver for the rideshare was.
“The company wasn’t responsive and photo lineups are hard.”
Don’t Let Insurance Companies Violate Your Rights
After an accident, Vanderslice told The Seattle Times, it’s not easy to know if you’ve been injured. The adrenaline kicks in and you might only feel pain hours later. That’s why you should seek medical treatment before signing any paperwork or reaching an agreement with an insurance company.
When determining who must pay for your medical bills, Vanderslice explained, look at who’s at fault.
If the rideshare driver was on the clock at the time of the crash and he or she is to blame for the accident, the company’s insurance will be responsible. However, the victim may want to check with his or her personal auto insurance if upfront payment for medical treatment is required.
For more tips on how you should proceed after an accident with an Uber or Lyft vehicle, follow this link for the full The Seattle Times report.