Would You Trust a Rideshare With Your Kids? This Uber Competitor
is Making Rideshare Safer.
Founder @ NowSourcing. Contributor @ Hackernoon, Advisor @GoogleSmallBiz, Podcaster, infographics
The headlines are grisly, and never seem to end
. Riders get into an Uber or a Lyft and are suddenly met with violence
, senseless tragedy
, or predators
. Stepping into a rideshare is more dangerous than a lot of us would
like to admit. After all, it’s so easy to call one up from your
mobile phone. You just want to get home quickly at the end of the night.
Sometimes you’re just too tired to think about the ‘what ifs’.
But when your children are getting into the car, that’s another story.
Would you send an Uber to pick your kid up from school - alone - and
trust the driver to bring them home safely? More than likely, the
thought triggers a silent scream of “NOOOOOOOO!!” in your
forefront of your brain.
There’s one tech company aiming to change that. They hope to be the
first rideshare app that’s so safe, they can bring your kids to you
while you rest in a peaceful state of mind.
Safer Ridesharing Isn’t About Advanced Technology
Sound far off? It’s not. The app, called ScoopM, takes several extra
safety measures overlooked by their mainstream competitors. Every
ride is video recorded from a mandatory driver dash cam, and the
footage is automatically uploaded to the cloud so it can’t be
deleted or tampered with. You can even watch it from your phone while
your child is riding.
They require drivers to pass FBI background checks. The rider can push a
panic button at any time if there’s a problem, automatically
triggering an emergency response. And if you have a good experience
with a driver, you can request them again, to build a relationship of
None of this is exactly rocket science, but it does exploit a gap in
current rideshare options.
“People love rideshares,” says ScoopM founder and CEO Diondre Lewis.
“They’re easy, faster and more comfortable than public transit,
cheaper than owning a car, and a responsible option for a night out
when you plan on drinking. But there’s so much room for
improvement. The two biggest rideshare brands have been dropping the
ball over and over again---and people are losing their lives because
of it! With the technology we have, there’s just no reason for
Centering Safety as a Core Value Means Establishing Trust
Lewis decided to start ScoopM after becoming fed up with unsavory rideshare experiences. He wanted a rideshare company that was so safe that kids would be able to step into a car without parents having to worry
about them, so he started thinking of what it would take for people
to feel comfortable in that scenario.
“Parents want to be able to see their kids to know they’re okay,” Lewis
says, “so we decided to require dash cams for all our drivers. But
more importantly, parents need to feel that they can trust the
service.” And that, he says, doesn’t just mean the drivers. It’s
the whole company. “I wanted to make a company that centers
families and prioritizes safety as its number one concern. A
trustworthy company that’s accountable for what it does.”
A Future Where Kids Get Into Cars With Strangers
One of ScoopM’s promo videos shows a working mother tending bar, unable to get away from her shift. Her school-aged child hops into a ScoopM car and cruises happily to meet her as she gets off work. It seems
almost unfathomable. The first thing you ever teach your kids about
safety is “never get in a car with a stranger!” But the video
strikes this note specifically so we can ask: “why not?”
“We can make this a reality. It’s not that hard,” Lewis insists.
“It’s just about putting the right systems in place, and hiring
the right people. Other rideshare services don't bother with that.
Almost anyone can drive for Uber. That’s why it’s such a mess.”
ScoopM also promotes their pay rates for drivers, which are higher than the competition. But that’s at least partially to support the more
selective screening process, which might otherwise deter applicants.
So in the bigger context, even the higher driver pay can be
interpreted as a safety measure.
Lewis acknowledges that they’re taking on a large responsibility asking
customers to trust them with their kids. But he says it’s important
that someone step up and fill that role. “We have the tools to
build a better, safer, tech-based transportation system,” he says.
“Someone just had to do it.”
(Photo by why kei on Unsplash)
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