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Uber & Lyft Tied to Sexual Assault and Accidents

Uber and Lyft Accidents and Sexual Assault Claims – What They Knew, When They Knew It

Since its launch in 2009, Uber has created a popular – albeit controversial – industry and an equally innovative business model. In 2017 alone, Uber was available in 450 cities in 78 different countries and employed more than 7 million drivers. Combine these numbers with the 1.4 million Lyft drivers and 23 million Lyft users, and we’re talking about multi-billion dollar businesses that are impacting millions of people around the globe. However, many stories have been on the news reporting how passengers are at risk using these on-demand ride-sharing services.

What They Knew

Many Uber and Lyft passengers have been injured over the years and here are some recent examples:

  • June 2017 – A 46-year-old Uber driver with felony record allegedly attacked a 24-year-old passenger who was intoxicated. Instead of taking her home, he reportedly took her to a motel and sexually assaulted her. She woke up the next day in the strange room and only remembers falling asleep in the back of the Uber driver’s car.
  • August 2017 – A woman from San Diego in her 20s called 911 and said her Lyft driver raped her after picking her up from Pacific Beach.
  • September 2017 – Talata Williams, a Lyft passenger, and was killed in a head on collision in Washington, D.C.
  • November 2017 – Two women file lawsuits in San Francisco claiming that Uber fails to perform thorough background checks on their drivers and does not follow up on their drivers for instances of inappropriate or violent behavior.

When They Knew It

In December 2014, after hundreds of allegations of sexual assault, Uber starts to perform more extensive background checks on drivers which includes being charged with rape. However, both Uber and Lyft are known to have discrepancies concerning their background checks. Each company has their own policies for how they screen their drivers and these standards can also vary by state. In general, drivers can’t have a criminal record that includes a conviction for a felony, violent crime or sexual offenses nor can they have DUIs or major moving violations in the last seven years. If a crime occured longer than seven years ago, it’s up to the company to decide whether or not they want to hire the person. Lyft performs background and DMV checks for drivers annually. Uber doesn’t.

The first fatal car accident occurred in April 2016 involving a Lyft driver who allegedly was exceeding the speed limit. Lyft claimed that they were not financially responsible because the driver “was an independent contractor responsible for their own means and methods, making the doctrine of respondeat superior inapplicable.” While Uber and Lyft have extensive insurance policies, their responsibility for payouts is still held in question.

What Can You Do?

If you or a loved one was injured while using the services of an Uber or Lyft vehicle, you may be eligible to make a claim. These companies are failing to perform thorough background checks on their drivers and are putting millions of passengers at risk. If you were in a car accident while in an Uber or Lyft vehicle or were sexually assaulted by one of their drivers, you may be eligible for financial compensation. Contact us today.

Uber & Lyft Warnings In The News

11/14/17: 2 Women Sue Uber, Alleging Sexual Assault by Drivers

Two women have filed suit against Uber, alleging that inadequate driver background checks and monitoring left them and thousands of others vulnerable to sexual assault.

The women from Florida and California are not identified in the federal lawsuit filed Tuesday in San Francisco. Each alleges being sexually assaulted by an Uber driver who gave her a ride home.

Read Full Article

11/3/17: What We Know (and Don't Know) About Uber Background Checks

Accused terrorist Sayfullo Saipov made over 1,400 trips as an Uber driver registered in New Jersey. He passed an Uber background check about six months ago. Saipov also passed Lyft’s background check — and made 180 trips using the service, the company said.

On Tuesday, Saipov allegedly killed 8 people driving a rented pickup truck to mow down cyclists on a busy Manhattan bike path.

Read Full Article

6/26/17: Uber Driver Accused of Kidnapping, Sexually Assaulting Intoxicated Female Passenger

A 46-year-old Uber driver with felony record has been arrested on suspicion of sexual assault and kidnapping after an intoxicated passenger was taken to a hotel and attacked. Los Angeles police said Monday that Alaric Spence picked up a 24-year-old woman who had been out drinking in downtown Los Angeles. She fell unconscious in his car, said LAPD Robbery Homicide Capt. William Hayes.

Read Full Article

3/17/17: Uber Versus Women: A Timeline

A week ago, Uber board member Arianna Huffington was on TV saying the ride-hailing company doesn’t have a “systemic problem” treating women employees equitably. That’s pretty much how it’s been for Uber–not just recently, since whistleblower Susan Fowler painted a portrait of rampant harassment and discrimination, but for a while now. It may only be eight years old, but in its short life, the company has faced questions regarding its treatment of women on numerous occasions. In fact, there have been so many incidents, we needed to make a timeline to keep them all straight.

Read Full Article

4/18/16: Lyft Sued Over Fatal Crash After Settlement Delay

Eighteen months after an accident claimed the life of a 24-year-old Sacramento man taking a Lyft ride home on a rainy night, his mother and boyfriend are suing the San Francisco ride company. They claim that Lyft is dragging its heels on taking financial responsibility for a crash that the California Highway Patrol says was the Lyft driver’s fault.

Read Full Article

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LATEST ARTICLES

Biased and Falsified Studies: The Truth Behind Medical Research

Doctors need at least eight years of higher education and another seven years training in a residency and fellowship before they can really practice on their own in their field. That’s just one reason why we, as patients, put our trust – and quite literally our lives – in their hands.

Biased and Falsified Studies: The Truth Behind Medical Research

Drugs, treatments, diagnoses, and everything else that goes into treating our symptoms are quite complicated so we rely on their expertise to make us well. Unfortunately, this is also a business and like all businesses, there’s the motivation to make money. The lack of accountability and financial perks have created a serious conflict of interest between research doctors, pharmaceutical companies, and the medical professionals who rely on these studies to address their patients.

Why You Should Care About Medical Study Research

Okay, I admit it: I never even thought about how drugs or medical devices were put on the market until recently. Like most people, I didn’t have the time to care and I also figured that’s what my doctor is for. But the deeper I dug, the more I learned that millions of people are getting injured – and are even dying – because drugs and medical devices aren’t being properly tested.

Here’s one example: transvaginal mesh (TVM) was never tested in a vagina before it was put into millions of women’s vaginas. Johnson & Johnson paid the inventor of TVM, Swedish obstetrician and gynecologist Ulf Ulmsten, $1 million to prove TVM’s safety and effectiveness. Who wouldn’t do everything they could to skew the results in their favor? Now hundreds of thousands of women are living with pain, have broken relationships, and suffer from other complications due to this bad medical device.

The Core Conflict

Doctors don’t have the time or funding to do the research themselves, so they rely on experts in their respective fields to test new drugs and medical devices and to report the benefits and risks so they can best treat their patients. Like the TVM example, many researchers are getting funding and kickbacks for publishing papers promoting a certain drug or medical device in medical journals or for speaking at conferences. The main problem is the lack of transparency on the part of many doctors who fail to disclose that they are funded by the pharmaceutical company.  The New York Times reported that, “Dr. Jeffrey R. Botkin, an associate vice president for research at the University of Utah, recently argued… that researchers should face misconduct charges when they do not disclose their relationships with interested companies. ‘They really are falsifying the information that others rely on to assess that research,’ he said. ‘Money is a very powerful influencer, and people’s opinions become subtly biased by that financial relationship.’”

We, as patients, need to demand more accountability and transparency in the medical world. Researchers need to disclose their relationship with pharmaceutical companies so our doctors can take the information with a grain of salt to fully understand the capabilities and risk factors for the treatments they are prescribing. The more products a company sells, the more money it makes. We should be treated with the drug or device that works best, not offers the biggest perk.


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Sources
“What These Medical Journals Don’t Reveal: Top Doctors’ Ties to Industry”. New York Times. Accessed December 11, 2018. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/08/health/medical-journals-conflicts-of-interest.html

4 Tips for Camp Fire Survivors to Help Replace Destroyed Items

When everything is lost, where do you even begin to start to replace what mattered most? This is the big question that victims of the Camp Fire in Paradise and other California fire survivors are asking themselves. While family heirlooms, childhood crafts, and other priceless items can’t be replaced, other favorite pieces can be with a little time and effort.

4 Tips for Camp Fire Survivors to Help Replace Destroyed Items

Our Call Center Manager, Laura, lost her family home in Paradise and is now helping her parents to rebuild what was lost. She has been busy reaching out to over 80 companies asking for a bit of generosity to replace items such as her dad’s barbecue, safe, and other valuable pieces. Some businesses have been amazing and have given the items for free or asked for just the cost of shipping while others have declined to even honor their warranties. (And just so you know, this post has two motives: 1) to advise you on how to ask companies for help and 2) to inform you of businesses who are compassionate and generous so we can continue to support them!)

2. Ask for a replacement item or a discount

Some people may think that your insurance is going to cut you a fat check to purchase everything you need, but usually they will cover only 50 – 75% of the initial costs, so a discount or free item is going to be incredibly appreciated. It may be helpful to mention that you have insurance, but it only covers a fraction of your losses. Also, a discount is better than nothing. We want to support these businesses who are willing to do what they can, not cause financial stress. Requesting a discount can help you to get what you need while also providing a way for the company to help without causes financial strain.

3. Explain the importance of the item in your letter

For Laura’s family, Sunday night barbecues were the highlight of the week. Her dad, Chris, was proud of his skills and he even created a designated spot with pavers to house his grill. Laura reached out to Weber and explained “every Sunday night in our family means barbecue, beer and football… family dinners revolve around BBQ.” Guess what happened? They offered Chris a 22” model for free. Maybe the item isn’t the exact one that you requested, but this was so generous on the part of Weber and it was a huge step in getting life back to normal for Chris.

4. Give as much information about the original product as you can.

A company is more likely to replace the item if you have proof of ownership and that you were personally affected by the fire (and not a scammer). Here is a great sample that Laura wrote:

My dad owned two toolboxes from Snap On and he has always been a Mr. Fix It type of guy. I wanted to reach out, because we just lost our family home in Paradise, CA to the Camp Fire and now his toolboxes and tools are destroyed. The toolboxes themselves are brittle and can not be fixed and all the tools inside are melted together.

I wanted to see if there was any way I could get a discount to re order him at least one of the toolboxes. Unfortunately, their insurance is going to take months, maybe even years to pay out and I can’t afford to replace the toolboxes and tools myself at full price. If you could place just let me know I would really appreciate it.

I have attached photos of the toolboxes that I believe he had. I also attached before and after photos of our home in Paradise. You can see the toolboxes standing right in the middle of the ashes behind the garage door in the after photo.

Physically everyone made it out okay, but what remains of the place we all called home is devastating. I would really appreciate anything you can do to help out my family. Thank you so much in advance for your time.

 

Out of the 80+ companies that Laura has contacted, only four have responded. If you need a barbecue or custom made sign, please support Weber barbecues and Second to None Fabrication. These companies were awesome and we would love to see them rewarded for their generosity.

Those on Santa’s Naughty List? Snap-on Tools, KA_BAR knives, and Sentry Safe. On Sentry Safe’s website, they even state that, “Should your safe go through a fire, SentrySafe will send a replacement safe free of charge, so the things that matter most are protected for generations to come.” Not only would the above companies not replace the items, but they also refused to offer a discount.

It’s going to take time to contact businesses, but it may be worth the effort to start getting your life back together. We also hope that you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the compassion and kindness you’ll find.

Periscope Group is not owned by or operated on behalf of any attorney or law firm. We are not affiliated with any drug or medical device companies. We do not host advertisements nor do we accept advertising requests. We are here to help YOU, the consumer, become better educated and supported. You pay absolutely nothing for our help. It’s as simple as that.

Periscope Group is not owned by or operated on behalf of any attorney or law firm. We are not affiliated with any drug or medical device companies. We do not host advertisements nor do we accept advertising requests. We are here to help YOU, the consumer, become better educated and supported. You pay absolutely nothing for our help. It’s as simple as that.

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© All Rights Reserved • 2017 • Periscope Group, 4155 Blackhawk Plaza Circle, Suite 100, Danville, CA 94506 Legal Disclaimer

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