CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - With carjackings on the rise across Northeast Ohio, rideshare drivers are finding themselves to be a main target.
There have been over half a dozen attacks on rideshare drivers over the past few months in Cleveland.
And there are likely more, since carjacking data doesn’t specify if a rideshare driver was involved.
These attacks in Cleveland are just part of the picture. In the suburbs, we’ve seen similar carjackings happening in Parma and Garfield Heights.
The latest attack happened Sunday in Akron when police say a Lyft driver was shot and killed.
Rideshare companies, like Uber, are working on new ways to keep their drivers safe, following the spike in attacks, seen also in other cities across the country.
Last month, Uber updated its rider verification process, in an effort to reduce the number of carjackings involving their rideshare drivers.
“If someone opens an account and does not use a traditional payment method, such as a credit card, then they’re prompted to upload an ID,” Wade Stormer, a law enforcement liaison manager for Uber, told 19 News. The ID, such as a driver’s license or passport, will then be checked for validity.
Uber drivers also have access to an in-app emergency button to quickly reach a 9-1-1 dispatcher.
Stormer says the company’s Law Enforcement Operations Team also works closely with local law enforcement, to get important data into the hands of police to help with criminal investigations.
“Our response team is available 24/7 to assist law enforcement,” Stormer said.
Uber drivers, in Ohio, also have the ability to get Injury Protection Insurance. The optional insurance helps reduce the costs of medical expenses associated with a covered accident or assist a driver with disability payments.