To the Editor:
On Friday, The Hoya published an ill-researched, surface-level editorial (“Uber’s Risky Business,” The Hoya, A2, April 4, 2014) implying Uber is unsafe and calling for more regulation on rideshare operators. What’s missing from this piece is important information about how Uber ensures safety as well as about who is really behind the campaign to paint Uber as unsafe.
Drivers for Uber undergo more extensive background checks than D.C. taxi drivers before they even go out on the road: These tests go back seven years, versus the standard three years for D.C. taxi drivers. Once the drivers get on the road, customer feedback is closely monitored; drivers who perform poorly are deactivated. Uber has also been a leader in creating, developing and expanding ridesharing insurance to ensure beyond a doubt that each trip on the Uber system is fully insured. Insurance on Uber trips is $1 million as opposed to the required $25,000 for D.C. taxis. In short, we’re working every day to make Uber the best and safest transportation option around.
The TLPA, a taxi-industry lobbying group, has raised a $1 million war chest from its members and created the “Who’s Driving You” campaign in order to spread rumors and lies about Uber. Rather than compete on the basis of quality of service, the taxi industry chooses to push for regulations that restrict consumer choice, trying to make themselves the only game in town. At Uber, we support regulation aimed at increasing safety, but this is the taxi industry using fear to eliminate competition. I hardly find that “laudable,” as the editorial claims.
During my time at Georgetown, my friends and I rarely left the neighborhood due to the dearth of reliable transportation options available. Uber has made D.C. more accessible and opened up new experiences for all Hoyas. I still read The Hoya from time to time to keep up with what’s happening on the Hilltop, and I was disappointed to see such a poorly researched editorial. Remember, not everything you read online is true.
P.S. We’re hiring.