Uber launches new safety features for US riders

NEW YORK: Uber Technologies Inc will connect US riders directly to emergency number 911 from this summer, the latest in a package of measures designed to improve the global ride hailing company’s popular image. The company said its app will have a dedicated “safety centre” feature that will include information on driver screening processes, insurance protections and community guidelines.
Riders will also be able to designate up to five friends and family members as trusted contacts and share trip details with them during every ride, Chief Executive Officer Dara Khosrowshahi wrote in a blog post. Uber is currently facing a class action suit in the United States for poor driver vetting that has led to a series of sexual harassment incidents, including rape. The string of safety measures is an attempt by CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, who took the top job in August last year, to refurbish Uber’s image and put several scandals behind the company following eight years of former CEO Travis Kalanick’s pugnacious leadership. — Reuters