Uber and Lyft and Their Possible Effects on Drunk Driving Accidents

Ten years ago, a new type of service hit the roads that would change the way we think of rides and taxis forever. It was in 2009 that—what we know today as Uber—launched as UberCab. A few years later, it hits New York City. It was there that the real potential of the company became known to everyone. And yes, only ten years later, the company has wreaked havoc to the Taxi industry and has changed the way people get around in big and medium-sized cities. There is considerable amount of evidence that the ride sharing service has provided a valuable service to people everywhere, as well as provided college kids with a source of income, but Uber and Lyft have actually affected a lot of other aspects of our roads. One interesting question to look at is the impact these popular ride hailing services have had on drunk driving and driving under the influence. 

This is obviously a difficult change to document, trace, and measure, as it’s difficult to prove just how much these services have actually impacted people’s decisions not to drive home or how many potentially drunk drivers they have stopped on their tracks. 

The Impact of Ride Hailing Services — Studies Indicate They’ve Decreased Incidents

According to the New York Times, a recent independent study backs up the idea that Uber and Lyft have greatly contributed to the reduction in drunk driving accidents. The study found that in four boroughs in New York City, there had been a 25 percent reduction in alcohol-related accidents since 2011—the year Uber hit the NY City roads. This is a significant change when compared to places where a ride-hailing company doesn’t operate, the study indicates. 

Both Uber and Lyft like to claim the validity of these numbers, but of course not everyone agrees. There are other reports whose results speak things a little differently. Another study looked at about 100 highly-populated counties across the United States and found no correlation between the increase of Uber services and traffic fatalities. 

In the end, it’s really difficult to measure the precise number and accurate data, given the many different variables that can have an effect on these numbers including changes in local state laws, access to public transport in those areas, populations, etc etc. 

There does seem to be, however, plenty of anecdotal evidence that shows it does affect people’s decisions when it comes to planning ahead. Many times people will take one of these services before a  night they suspect might turn a little wild. There is some consensus that Uber and Lyft have had some impact, particularly on larger and more populated urban center. 

If Caught with a DUI, the Best Defense is a Good Lawyer

Nevertheless, Texas continues to see plenty of DUI incidents. If you have been caught drinking and driving or are suspected of getting behind the wheel, don’t waste any time and contact a trusted defense lawyer that can fight for you. If you have questions about a DUI, call the Aranda Law Firm today.