Uber adding seatbelt reminders to app

Published: Feb. 8, 2022 at 11:40 AM EST
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(WILX) - Driving along Michigan’s snowy roads can be a risky proposition, made more dangerous when not wearing a seatbelt. But what about when you’re in the backseat while using a ride-hailing app like Uber?

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A study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety found that 4 out of 5 people surveyed do not reliably buckle up when traveling by taxi or ride-hailing services like Uber. Company representatives say it’s a danger, and so their introducing a notification system to remind passengers to buckle up.

“Buckling up is one of the most effective ways to help keep yourself and others in the vehicle safe in a crash,” said Kristin Smith, Uber’s Head of Global Road Safety Policy. “By leveraging technology to remind riders to buckle up, we hope to increase seat belt use and potentially save lives.”

The seatbelt reminder, going live now across the US, will play on phones in the form of an audio and text reminder. Riders will receive the push notifications at the start of their next five trips and then periodically thereafter.

“Since 1975, seat belts are estimated to have saved more than 374,000 lives,” said Mark Chung, vice president of roadway practice at the National Safety Council. “At NSC, one of the first safe driving practices we encourage is buckling up.”

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