San Francisco is a busy place, so it’s pleasantly surprising to hear that the city only had two drunk driving arrests on New Year’s Eve, which was the lowest since 2009, according to statistics reported by the San Francisco Police Department.
This data corresponds with a new study, which reveals that the low-cost ride service, UberX, has reduced the rate of drunk driving fatalities across California.
Temple University’s Brad N. Greenwood and Sunil Wattal published a paper on how the ridesharing service, Uber has influenced the rate of alcohol-related fatalities.
Study Finds Uber Has Reduces Drunk Driving
Looking at the entry of two Uber services into markets in California from 2009 to 2014, the study found a significant reduction in the rate of alcohol-related deaths after Uber was introduced to the market.
The research shows that having affordable taxi-like options makes it a lot easier for people to call for a ride when they’ve been drinking.
If the benefits of Uber were extended to all cities, such as Las Vegas, ridesharing could save hundreds of lives and the economic savings could be in the billions each year.
The study found that the entrance of UberX results in a reduction between 3.6 and 5.6 percent of alcohol-related deaths per quarter in California.
With over 13,000 deaths occurring each year across the country due to alcohol-related crashes at a cost of $37 billion, results indicate that if UberX were fully implemented, it would save American taxpayers over 1.3 billion and over 500 lives every year.
The overwhelming benefits of Uber ridesharing services makes it hard for taxi cab drivers and politicians to keep Uber out of their cities. The evidence shows that Uber is not only battling taxi companies, it’s waging a war against drunk driving.
Today, we can find Uber and Lyft drivers all over LA and Orange counties. Most Orange County residents are quick to agree that ridesharing apps have become an integral part of modern culture.
Evidently, Uber and Lyft are excellent alternatives to driving home drunk, and they’re doing more than saving people time and money, they’re saving people’s lives.