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Plan to use Uber in Texas? Keep these safety tips in mind

As a licensed driver in Texas, as well as a responsible citizen, you take your obligation to adhere to traffic laws and safety regulations very seriously. Especially concerning alcohol consumption and motor vehicle operation, you're always sure to carefully plan your evenings out so that you have alternate transportation if you plan to imbibe.

You might be one of hundreds of other San Antonio residents who use Uber and other rideshare services. Regarding drinking and driving, it's always better to be safe than sorry, and planning ahead can help you avoid serious legal problems, too. However, there's a risk when you trust another driver to get you where you need to go. What if your chauffeur is negligent at the wheel? When using rideshare programs, you should know that danger may be lurking.

One tragedy is too many

Some months ago, a college student was missing. Her friends reported her disappearance to local police. An investigation led to the tragic discovery of the young woman's lifeless body. After reviewing surveillance films, investigators determined she was waiting for a rideshare vehicle and mistakenly got into the wrong car.

You can never be overly cautious when it comes to protecting yourself while using rideshare apps. If a vehicle pulls up near you, it's a good idea to check the license plate, the driver's photo on your app and other identification information before entering the vehicle to prevent getting into the wrong car. 

Create space between you and the driver

Even if you are the only passenger, do not sit in the front passenger seat of a rideshare vehicle. Sitting in back is always safest because it allows you to quickly exit the vehicle through the rear passenger door if needed.

Stay indoors as long as possible

There are no rules that require you to wait for an Uber ride or other rideshare service outdoors. In fact, you increase your safety if you stay inside the restaurant, home or other facility while you wait. This also allows you to scan the vehicle and the driver before you approach the car. Trust your instincts. If something doesn't seem right, review the safety features on the app you are using and proceed as necessary.

If the driver causes a collision

You might implement all available safety precautions and still wind up suffering injury if your rideshare driver wrecks. You might also suffer injuries even if you did not hire an Uber of Lyft driver. Perhaps, you were driving your own car and a rideshare driver caused a collision. Maybe you were a pedestrian when a vehicle hit you.

As in any type of collision, your highest priority is seeking medical attention. Even if you feel okay, it's always best to go to the hospital because not all injuries are immediately apparent. Rideshare companies often have complex insurance coverage. This is why most Texas accident victims consult attorneys before determining their next courses of action following rideshare collisions that result in injury.

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