Emergency/Safety Concerns Follow Up

Goals

To understand how companies, organizations, and non-profits (such as Uber or Lyft, crisis hotlines, and/or emergency services) follow up after receiving urgent safety-related calls from customers/clients.

Early Findings

COMPANIES

OVERVIEW
  • In early 2019, Uber and Lyft both implemented new safety reporting policies following the death of a student in a ride-share vehicle.
  • The new measures include various techniques to ensure that riders are entering the right car, such as providing an image of the driver and their license plate number, in addition to a description of their car.
  • Both companies have also "implemented continuous background checks for drivers".
FOLLOW-UP PROCEDURES
  • Uber houses an office in Phoenix, AZ which is responsible for handling and responding to all safety concerns reported by riders in the US and Canada.
  • When a complaint first arrives in the office, a team of 60 representatives "triages" it based on what type of complaint it is, using keywords such as "touch" or "gun".
  • Any claim involving "crashes, physical altercations, sexual assault or misconduct, theft, stalking after a ride is over and other serious matters" results in the driver being immediately suspended, and the triage agent calling the rider for more details.
  • During triage phone calls, operators provide riders with follow-up contact details, including counseling resources where appropriate. Following the call, an investigation is opened and conducted by the 65-person investigation team.

ORGANIZATIONS

  • When callers first reach 911 services, they will be asked a series of questions designed to determine what the emergency is and how best to help them. These include questions about location, the phone number being called from, the nature of the emergency, and details of the emergency such as a description of the person committing the crime.
  • Once the dispatcher knows the caller's location and situation, emergency services will be dispatched accordingly.

Proposed next steps:

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