• Karolena Serratos

Condition of Ride-share Vehicles

I am pretty good when it comes to vehicles. I have been in some ride-share vehicles where I seriously questioned my safety and even though I knew I should have ended the ride and gotten a different vehicle, I did not because I was on a tight schedule. I have repeatedly thought to myself how incredibly dumb it was to do that. I knowingly stayed in a dangerous situation. And it was partly because the person I was with wrote off the same concerns, but I'm the certified car professional -- not the driver.


I have heard bad bearings, felt bad brakes (especially rotors, which makes me question their driving and/or maintenance habits), worn out suspension and today, I heard a bad tire. Before I would try to bring it up casually during the ride and I always get written off. I don't want to believe with 2020 being just around the corner that my car concerns were written off because I'm a woman...


Today, I was in a vehicle with what sounded like a bad tire and while it wasn't bad enough for me to feel like my life was in danger, it was certainly enough for me to mention it to the driver at the end of ride. He said "Woah! I just found out I had a bad tire, man I'll get it taken care of! Thank you!" Finally, someone who cares (or at least pretended to care).


The City of Houston used to require the ride-share vehicles to undergo the same inspections that Taxis must undergo, but the ride-share drivers began to complain of the expense of inspection. Heaven forbid we require an in-depth inspection of a vehicle whose sole purpose is to drive with people in them, people who are trusting these drivers and their vehicles with their lives. Apparently the complaints were seen as valid and now only salvage title taxis need inspections every year.


I know about cars, but most people don't. How can they can they make the right judgement call? And even though I have the knowledge, I still let society get the better of me because of my schedule. Why can't it just be safe no matter what? We are already dealing with someone else's defensive driving. On that note, one day my Uber driver went down a one-way street going the wrong way and only then told us he's only been driving for four months.


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