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Tuesday, January 12, 2016

How to deal with vomiting riders?

Ridesharing drivers are likely to deal with vomiting riders. These drunk riders press request on a rideshare app, lounge around with other tipsy friends, and then jump into a ridesharing vehicle that is hopefully theirs. We've watched these drunk riders wobbling along city streets, barely able to stay upright. Driving drunk riders is part of the job, so be prepared to respond accordingly, following an unexpected vomit mess.

Unfortunately, drivers must drive home drunk riders. Typically, most drunk riders are tolerable and won't represent a vomit risk. However, there are embarrassing drunks who are unable to hold their own. These are the worst ridesharing offenders, because they will cost you hundreds and/or thousands in missed fares. Ridesharing companies don't allow drivers to warn others via feedback. Therefore, repeat offenders ride under the radar until their next vomit disaster.  

The moment a drunk dispels their marinated acidic contents on your floorboard and/or on the front or backseat, your night is pretty much over, unless you decide to scoop up these foul-smelling chunks piece-by-piece. Don't get back on the road without at least sanitizing this mess. It is unethical, unprofessional to expect passengers to sit in this post-vomit mess. This vomit issue is where the taxi industry is known to operate under sub-par standards. 

Most taxi drivers could care less whether their passengers sit on vomit juice. Their main motivation is to transport as many people as possible. We can't expect taxi drivers to adopt moral standards. A client recently shared a troubling ridesharing experience abroad, reporting that taxi drivers were known to drag ridesharing drivers outside of their vehicles and beat them to a pulp. Most drivers are frightened to give rides, but somehow overcome this fear to make a living. It is part of the ridesharing game. 

Back on topic; vomiting riders are a curse to the ridesharing industry. Whereas ridesharing drivers depend on making consistent and/or high priced fares driving drunks, unfortunate vomit disasters could cost them big money. 

What do you do after a drunk rider vomits in your ride? First and foremost, the events surrounding this event determine the outcome of vomit encounters. If riders are beyond drunk, act violent, hang out the window, vomit and pose a threat to your safety, end this trip immediately. Directly inform this client their trip is over. Per protocol, you have the right to end trips to protect yourself. 

Take for example, a requesting client is unable to control their drunk friends. Their co-riders may act obnoxious, threaten to fight you, vomit everywhere and/or yell obscenities outside. If one of these friends vomit inside your vehicle, and then make another mess outside and roll in it, tell the client you must end this trip. Be honest with your client, tell them this isn't working out so you must end the ride to clean up this mess.

Step 1. Snap a picture of the client account. 
Step 2. End trip. Rate this client appropriately. 
Step 3. In the help section, choose that you had a problem with the rider. Select vomit and take pictures of this mess. 
Step 4. Write a statement about your encounter, giving as much detail as possible to receive compensation.  
Step 5. Answer any questions your ridesharing company may ask concerning this vomit episode. 

In a lukewarm encounter, a drunk rider may vomit in an active trip and/or at the destination. It is up to drivers whether they choose to complete this trip - end ride and/or continue on. If this rider is severely drunk, then do your best to get the client home safely. At the end of the trip, you can follow the steps above. 

With Uber, drivers must report this vomit episode within 48 hours. Don't wait to notify Uber; drivers are likely to lose out on any compensation. Uber Support will assess the damage, charging the rider accordingly. Based on recent revisions to this policy, riders are now charged $200 for vomit episodes. This charge will go against their Uber ride account. They agree to abide by the terms and conditions, which means they accept to cover cleanup charges. 

Riders who are sick should do their best to request drivers to pull over, open the door and vomit on the road. Vomit bags are available in some vehicles, but this comes with another risk that clients may allow their vomit to spill out on the seat and/or floorboard and make a bigger mess. The best action for drunk riders is to avoid requesting rides until they're ready. Vomit ahead of time; leave your mess outside. If you don't mind paying $200 or $250 (Lyft), then go right ahead and vomit. 

Drunk riders affect drivers and/or other riders requesting rides. After vomit encounters, drivers are unable to get back on the road. Removing ridesharing vehicles from the grid can influence the price of fares, as demand for rides go up and supply of vehicles go down. Hence, this ripple effect can jolt demand, remove supply and activate surge pricing. 

Simple steps to deal with vomiting riders: 

Step 1. Snapshot of client account with name present. 
Step 2. End trip. Rate client. 
Step 3. Click on help?
Step 4. Select appropriate concerns, such as problem with rider and vomit. 
Step 5. Take in-app photos. Write a summary of the events. 
Step 6. Submit this claim. 
Step 7. Take personal photos in case in-app pictures are lost.   
Step 8. Drivers will receive compensation based on damage/mess. 

Take precaution to reduce vomit encounters. If you notice really drunk riders, you have the right to cancel trips using a particular reason. Purchase vomit bags so coherent drunk riders who pose a risk can use these to vomit. Make sure they don't allow this vomit to spill out. Keep an eye on problem riders. Drive at times and in areas where bar rides are less frequent. Good luck!