Injury Law Blog

Ride shares may lower motor vehicle accident deaths

As California residents know, drunk driving causes many accidents each year. There are alternatives to driving drunk such as taking a taxi or using a car share service such as Uber that might get more drunk drivers off the road and home safely. A study conducted by Temple University points out car sharing advantages to reduce drunk driving incidents.

According to the five-year study, the use of car sharing decreased fatal motor vehicle accidents associated with alcohol by 3.6 percent to 5.6 percent. The researchers think that of the 13,000 deaths per year attributed to motor vehicle accidents where alcohol consumption played a role, 500 lives might be saved annually using car sharing.

Taxi service was included in the study. However, it did not fare as well and, in some cities, it might offer insufficient service to those seeking a ride home. It was suggested that in those cities, car sharing is reportedly intentionally limited to provide less competition with taxi companies. This, in turn, might encourage more drunk drivers to use their own vehicles rather than call for a ride home.

The research study extended to motor vehicle accidents where drunk driving was not a contributing factor. In areas where ride sharing was allowed, there were reportedly no increases in accidents. The study suggests that areas where taxis are heavily regulated might wish to think about loosening those regulations, which would make taxi rides more competitive with ride shares.

A victim of an accident caused by a drunk driver may face a period of recuperation, medical bills and loss of income. A personal injury attorney might be of assistance in preparing and filing a lawsuit against the responsible party seeking damages for the losses that have been incurred.