Uber Joins Road Safety Advocates in Calling for National Vision Zero Commitment
By Kristin Smith, Head of Global Road Safety Policy
Nearly 40,000 people lose their lives on our nation’s roadways every year, and traffic crashes are the leading cause of death for people under 25 years old. But it doesn’t have to be this way. Uber is committed to being a strong partner in road safety. That’s why we are joining a coalition of national road safety advocates in asking President Biden to commit to a goal of eliminating traffic fatalities in our country by 2050. This would put the US in line with 144 other countries who signed onto this commitment.
Vision Zero is an international movement aimed at eliminating traffic deaths by helping to increase safe, healthy, equitable mobility for all. As a platform that moves tens of millions of people every year, we understand the difference safer infrastructure, lower speeds, and improved technology can make on our roadways.
We all have a role to play in reaching the goal of zero road fatalities. In 2018, Uber made a companywide pledge to stand for safety, putting road safety and women’s safety at the heart of our work. Since then, we’ve launched a number of multimodal safety products including speed limit alerts for drivers, crash detection technology, and bike lane alerts to remind riders to watch for cyclists before opening the door. We’ve also overhauled how we train our support staff, updated our policies, and tripled the size of our safety team.
We recognize that data is a key component of Vision Zero. In order to eliminate traffic deaths, we have to track and measure our progress. In 2019, Uber launched the US Safety Report, the first report of its kind by a company. The report shares details on Uber’s safety progress, processes, and data related to the most serious safety incidents on the platform, including motor vehicle fatalities. As detailed in the Safety Report, fatality rates on the Uber platform are about half of the nation’s average based on vehicle miles traveled. But even one fatality is too many, which is why we continue to develop products and partner with experts to help make it safer for everyone traveling on or around our platform.
“Everyone has a role to play in eliminating traffic deaths — especially now, as our roads have become more dangerous during the pandemic,” said Lorraine M. Martin, president and CEO of the National Safety Council. “We’ve enlisted a diverse group of stakeholders across sectors and industries through the Road to Zero Coalition to confront this challenge head on. Support from Uber, which provides millions of trips on its platform each day, will go a long way in helping make our roadways safer.”
At Uber, our work is guided by road safety experts and we value each of our partnerships. As a longtime member of the National Safety Council’s (NSC) Road to Zero Coalition, we’re proud to stand with our partners at the NSC, Governors Highway Safety Association, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, Vision Zero Network, and more in calling for a national commitment to end traffic fatalities. We’re proud to join this movement and are one step closer to helping make roads safer for all travelers.