We thought you might be perhaps interested in the below commentary from Gary Buffo, President of the National Limousine Association (NLA) and Scott Solombrino, Co-Founder of the National Limousine Association (NLA).
Saturday’s horrific shooting spree by an on-duty Uber driver in Kalamazoo, Michigan is the most recent, tragic illustration of inadequate safety, communications and driver vetting policies by ride-hailing services. Despite highly publicized campaigns where the service proclaimed itself “the safest on the road” with “industry-leading background checks”, which is the subject of two massive class-action lawsuits, it is now clearer than ever that substantial and consequential steps need to be taken to protect passengers and the general public.
Gary Buffo, President of the National Limousine Association (NLA), responds:
This tragic occurrence highlights how the current operating procedures of ride-hailing services fail to protect passengers, drivers and the public at large. As we now know from first-hand accounts, this driver was acting irrationally and operating his vehicle erratically not only in the hours leading up to and between these senseless shootings, but also in the days and weeks prior. Although it may be impractical to suggest that a large company such as Uber should be aware of the emotional state of all of its drivers, it is not unreasonable to expect a real-time review and action plan in place to flag and manage passenger issues and concerns.
-President of the NLA, Gary Buffo
Scott Solombrino, Co-Founder of the National Limousine Association (NLA), responds:
The fact that a service is app-based does not make it an exception to the rule. A company that knows and interacts with its employees and/or drivers is able to flag problematic behavior. Without a reliable method of contact to report concerns about drivers and ride experiences, I fear that we will continue to see disastrous consequences as a result of a lack of due diligence and basic communications standards. In this case, no new laws are even required, just a reliable method to monitor, respond and react to situations as they arise.
-Co-Founder of the NLA, Scott Solombrino
Buffo and Solombrino sound like bit part characters in the Sopranos really. Not all that surprisingly…..