The California Highway Patrol reported that a 24-year-old man was killed in a crash on Interstate 80 in Roseville in the morning hours of Nov. 1. Another man sustained injuries in the crash. Both individuals were passengers in a vehicle when the driver reportedly collided with a tree while trying to avoid a car that had stalled in the road. The driver was employed by a ridesharing service.
Ridesharing services are typically private enterprises that are not regulated by cities or counties. For this reason, some groups representing taxi drivers have complained that ridesharing services offer inferior protection to their passengers. However, the ridesharing service that employed the driver in this fatal accident provides $1 million in liability insurance coverage.
When car accidents result in the death of a passenger in a taxi or ridesharing vehicle, it may be difficult to determine if the driver of the vehicle was fully responsible. However, all drivers are expected to operate their vehicles in a safe manner by following what is known as a duty of care. Both distractions and recklessness can cause a driver to abandon their typical duty of care while on the road.
If a driver did not abide by this obligation, that individual may be found liable for an accident. For example, if it can be legally established that a taxi or rideshare driver did not pay enough attention to brake and avoid an initial collision, they may be determined liable for the accident and subsequent fatalities or injuries. An attorney may assist the family of a deceased loved one in developing a wrongful death suit against the applicable parties.
Source: CBS Sacramento , "Lyft Passenger’s Death Raises Concerns About Insurance Coverage Of Ridesharing Services", November 03, 2014