Lyft and Uber Pause Carpool Services to Help Slow the Spread of COVID-19
Some rideshare platforms have paused its shared carpool feature to help slow the spread of COVID-19. Lyft and Uber are to of the primary companies that recently announced a temporary suspension of services for both the U.S. and Canada.
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A step in the right direction
Both Uber and Lyft are closely monitoring the situation and will start up services sometime in the future when it is safe to do so, NPR confirms. “Our goal is to help flatten the curve of community spread in the cities we serve,” said Uber executive Andrew Macdonald. A Lyft spokeswoman also commented on the company’s goal of keeping users safe. “The health and safety of the Lyft community is our top priority.”
You’ll still be able to use Uber and Lyft for solo rideshare services, just not carpool ones. That’s good news for anyone without a car that needs a lift to the grocery store or workplace during this phase of social distancing.
Besides private rideshares, Uber is meeting the needs of its customers in other ways. It is still offering food delivery via the UberEats feature. It’s also sending friendly reminders to app users to limit how much they travel, to further help curb the spread of coronavirus.
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How rideshare drivers and passengers can stay safe
If you’re a rideshare passenger or driver, here are just some of the ways you can help lower your risk of getting COVID-19, according to Forbes.
Safety tips for passengers
- If you’re sick, don’t use rideshare services. Instead, use a private car or ask a close friend or family member to drive you.
- If you absolutely have to use rideshare services, protect yourself and the driver by wearing an N95 mask if you have one, as well as gloves.
- Keep your hands to yourself in the car to minimize contamination.
Safety tips for drivers
- Similar strategies apply if you’re a driver of a rideshare vehicle. If you’re sick, don’t drive others around.
- Thoroughly and frequently clean your vehicle’s interior with EPA-recommended disinfectant spray, then wipe it dry with a towel.
- Don’t give passengers water bottles or snacks.
- Wear gloves and get the door for passengers, to keep them from touching the door handles.
Whitney Russell is a current resident of Dayton, though her spirit can be found beach-bumming in Puerto Rico (the land of her half-Puerto Rican heritage). When not adventuring through the exciting world of car news, she can be found hiking with her husband and their two dogs, motorcycling, visiting nephews and nieces, discovering new memes, thrifting, decorating, crafting, woodburning, researching random things, and escaping into a great movie. See more articles by Whitney.