Michael J. Gaffney Attorney at Law
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Rise of ride hail vehicles might increase fatal auto crashes

For New Yorkers, ride hailing and ride share services are viewed in a positive light as they provide a way to get around without needing to wait for public transportation or to drive. There are undoubtedly benefits to Uber, Lyft and lesser-known services. However, recent research indicates that there could be risks with these services including a rise in auto accidents with serious injuries and fatalities. For people who have been injured or lost a loved one in a crash, it is important to understand the details of this study to determine if a ride hailing vehicle was involved and if this can factor in with a legal filing for compensation.

Many cities and states across the nation experienced a reduction in convictions for impaired driving between 2012 and 2017. This has coincided with the rise of Uber and Lyft. For law enforcement, this is a positive as it has prevented many people from getting behind the wheel when they were under the influence. Still, research from the University of Chicago shows that there could be dangers along with that improvement. There might have been as much as a three percent rise in auto fatalities during that time.

In its study, the amount of traffic, how people got around and number of accidents were assessed from the outset of ride-hailing's start in 2011. There were nearly 32,900 deaths on the road in 2010. By 2016, that had risen to more than 37,400. There was a three percent rise per year of fatal traffic crashes coming to 987 annually. Large cities saw the biggest spike. There was also an increase in pedestrian and bicycle deaths. The rise is attributed to several factors including more vehicles on the road and the possibility that drivers of these vehicles are functioning as distracted drivers as they use their cellphones to get calls and check for directions.

Auto accidents can change a person's life in an instant. Suddenly, they can be confronted with massive medical expenses they have no possible way to pay, physical problems that need extensive treatment, the inability to work and other issues. When there is a fatality, their loved one could be lost leaving the family with financial and emotional worries. If the accident was with a ride-hailing service, this can be a critical factor in a lawsuit. A firm that has experience in auto accidents can be of assistance in filing a case.

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Michael J. Gaffney, Attorney at Law
1164 Victory Blvd.
Staten Island, NY 10301

Phone: 347-286-1937
Fax: 718-447-9908
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