Recent incidences of insecurity and threats to Uber taxi users provide fodder for the company to urgently and expeditiously consider emergency hotline number for customers.
@uber_kenya we have been robbed by your below driver. What number do I reach you on prior to filing a police case? pic.twitter.com/hx6UG115Em
— Lando Calrissian (@mrwainaina_) March 13, 2016
As was noted by a user, using email is too slow and not responsive as emergencies should be
@uber_kenya you need an emergency phone number. Email is too slow for some of these emergencies. https://t.co/G3Z0hkVYHA
— Owaahh (@Owaahh) March 13, 2016
For drivers under them to turn into robbers is a serious issue. It could explain a lack of due diligence, like requiring all of their drivers to have a certificate of good conduct and renew it every year.
Then another case where a lady was assaulted
In the past one month, Uber has received free publicity from the traditional taxi drivers in the manner in which they threatened them, including destroying their vehicles. This could have led in an upsurge in demand in their taxis, which today leads to a surge in pricing, but they could have resorted to embracing more taxis to meet the demand.
Some entrepreneurs have been circulating Uber taxi opportunities on social media, asking young people between the age of 23-35 interested in being Uber taxi drivers to apply.
Since October, 2015, Uber has been secretly testing an emergency hotline for riders and drivers in 22 countries around the world. The company was not open to stating which countries they have been conducting the tests. Uber has also not explicitly told customers about the hotline because they want to see if riders can find it on their own.
Currently Uber operates in 396 cities in 60 countries. Nine of these cities are in Africa.
The testing of the emergency is prudently being done to both riders and drivers. Drivers can also come under security threat. Cases of carjacking of taxi drivers are frequent in Kenya, albeit no case involving Uber taxi drivers has unfolded.
To further improve security for ladies, Uber needs to have an option of asking a user whether they want to only use women drivers. This will further boost confidence in users which will also see more women being empowered.
Safety and reliability are two factors many riders prefer Uber to traditional taxi users. Currently, the feeling or presumption of safety is based on the fact that you can see the number, name and number plate of the driver coming to pick you. You also receive an automatic receipt, sent to your email once you use the service. This needs to be protected if they intended to continue having business.