Ride-sharing apps taking heat for incidents involving passengers and drivers

Posted at 8:34 PM, Nov 02, 2015

The two leading ride-sharing apps, Lyft and Uber, both saw major incidents over the weekend involving both drivers and passengers.

Scripps station KGTV in San Diego reports that a local woman is filing a lawsuit against Lyft stemming from a September incident in which she alleges a driver tried to molest her.

KGTV reports that after getting sick during her ride, the Lyft driver charged the woman a $200 fee, which he agreed to reduce to $100 if she paid cash. After arriving at her home, the woman ran in to get the cash and the driver followed.

The woman says the driver touched her backside and waist, and that if she gave "him some love, it'll be free." She then says the driver chased her over to a couch, where she "pushed him away" until he fled.

The woman filed a police report and a lawsuit against Lyft. A police investigation is still ongoing.

 Lyft responded to the KGTV report with this statement:

“We take all matters involving safety extremely seriously and were deeply concerned to hear about this incident. Upon receiving this report, we immediately deactivated the driver and reached out to law enforcement to offer assistance.”

Lyft's main competitor, Uber, isn't without its own issues. Over the weekend, a driver was forced to pepper-spray a passenger after being assaulted.

The incident, which was caught on tape, started when the driver, Edward Caban, tried to get directions to his passenger's destination. The man was so intoxicated that he "faded in and out of consciousness," according to NBC News.

After Caban told the passenger, Benjamin Golden, that he was ending the ride, Golden began hitting Caban and pulling his hair. Caban eventually was able to pull out his pepper spray and force Golden to leave the car.

Uber has banned Golden from riding with the company in the future, and Caban has also quit.

This isn't the first time ride-sharing apps have come under fire. Uber has had it's drivers accused of sexual assault in the past, and Lyft drivers have raised issues on their compensation in the past. In addition, the ride-sharing industry as a whole continues to feud with traditional Taxi drivers. 

Alex Hider is a writer for the E.W. Scripps National Desk. Follow him on Twitter @alexhider.