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Kentucky Uber Accident Lawyer

Although Uber burst onto the scene as a transportation option in major U.S. cities in 2009, it did not begin offering ridesharing services in Kentucky until spring 2014. The popular rideshare service began serving Louisville, Lexington, and Bowling Green, and later expanded throughout the state in 2018.

Uber riders love the flexibility and convenience the service offers. Residents and visitors alike use the service to get them around town and help them get an affordable ride to their destination of choice. Yet, negligent Uber drivers put riders, other motorists, and pedestrians at risk for injury when they make poor choices behind the wheel.

If you suffered injuries in a motor vehicle accident involving an Uber driver, Kentucky law permits you to seek compensation for losses related to your injuries. Suffering a severe injury can burden your life with layer-upon-layer of physical, emotional, and financial pain. The Law Firm of Flora Templeton Stuart understands these challenges and has the experience and resources to help you recover the compensation you deserve. Contact us at (888) 782-9090 for a free consultation to discuss the events leading up to your Uber accident, your injuries, and the best path forward for your situation.

About Flora Templeton Stuart

Negligent Uber Drivers Cause Severe Accidents Flora Stuart Uber Accident Lawyer in KentuckyThe skilled personal injury lawyers at The Law Firm of Flora Templeton Stuart has more than 40 years of experience representing accident victims, negotiating with insurance companies, settling injury claims, and going to trial when necessary.

The firm’s commitment to professional excellence, passion for justice, and dedication to client advocacy have led to the recovery of millions of dollars in damages from settlements and court-awarded damages.

Recent cases include a $1.7 million settlement for a family injured in a truck accident, a $1.05 million settlement for a client whose vehicle was rear-ended by a semi-truck, and $1.45 million for a family after a driver hit their child on the side of the road. These examples do not guarantee a specific outcome for your Uber accident claim, but the team at Flora Templeton Stuart has the resources and experience to go up against large companies like Uber and their insurance carriers, giving you a chance to get the compensation you deserve for losses related to your Uber accident injuries.

Negligent Uber Drivers Cause Severe Accidents

Accidents involving Uber take place more than you might think. While marketed as more convenient than taxis and safer than driving while intoxicated, Uber’s drivers nevertheless have contributed to or found themselves in thousands of accidents, 97 of which killed 107 persons during a recent two-year period. Ridesharaing has in general caused a 2 to 3 percent bump in U.S. traffic fatalities. More than 3,000 sexual assaults took place in Uber vehicles. Uber has not released non-fatal accident statistics.

As accidents proliferated, states and cities across the country began to pass laws and enact regulations to curb the problems that came along with ridesharing. Kentucky is no different. Cars must date from 2004 or newer. Cars must undergo annual inspections. Drivers must pass a defensive driving class and must take eight hour breaks after 12 straight hours in driver mode, and must take 10-hour breaks after 16 hours in driver mode during any given 24-hour period.

If Uber fails to enforce these mandates or the driver skirts them, victims of any resulting accidents may have a good case for negligence.

Many different situations can lead to a traffic collision, but some occur more frequently when rideshare companies like Uber play a role. Each crash has its own characteristics, but many Uber accidents result from the negligent driving behaviors of an Uber driver.

Some examples of scenarios that can lead to a dangerous, possibly deadly, Uber accident include:

Driving While Distracted

All drivers deal with distractions when they are behind the wheel, but Uber drivers often deal with more distractions than most. Kentucky law forbids all motorists to text and drive, but some Uber drivers still use the Uber app on their cell phones while driving. Uber drivers also have to deal with chatty, unruly, and sometimes inebriated riders, especially when they take fares at night.

Other driver distractions that can lead to an Uber accident include eating and drinking, reaching for something, adjusting vehicle features, watching an event outside of the vehicle, personal grooming, and daydreaming. Not all distractions are illegal, but anything that takes a driver’s attention away from their job can lead to a serious accident.

Driving Under the Influence

Uber drivers who use illegal drugs or consume alcohol before driving put riders and other motorists at risk for accident and injury. Prescription medications, when not taken in accordance with a doctor’s orders, can also impair drivers and lead to a potentially deadly crash. Uber drivers may earn a living behind the wheel, but Kentucky does not hold them to the same standards as truck drivers and other professional drivers.

For instance, Uber drivers do not need a commercial driver’s license. They also do not have to comply with the strict 0.04 blood alcohol limit that defines illegal intoxication for commercial drivers. Like any other motorist, an Uber driver who gets behind the wheel while under the influence of drugs or alcohol experienced impaired driving ability and puts the public in danger.

Driving While Fatigued

Uber knows some of their drivers give rides without getting adequate sleep, so they have implemented a 12-hour time limit for drivers to be signed into the app. Unfortunately, this only partially addresses the problem, and still leaves many Uber drivers operating without proper rest. The limit does not include breaks when drivers are signed out of the Uber app. Some Uber drivers also drive for other rideshare companies, so they sign out of Uber and into another app.

This means some Uber drivers drive for far more than 12 hours per day. In other cases, driving for Uber represents a part-time income for motorists who have other ‘day jobs’ or stay home with small children during the day. Regardless of the exact situation, it’s not uncommon for an Uber driver to put in a long day and not get the sleep they need before transporting riders.

Driver fatigue represents an extreme danger to the public. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) reports that 18 hours without sleep impairs a driver’s abilities as much as a 0.08 breath alcohol level, the legal limit for motorists without commercial licenses. Uber drivers who keep demanding schedules on a long-term basis suffer from fatigue that can result in a dangerous accident if they fall asleep at the wheel or nod off while driving.

Speeding

Uber riders want to get to their destinations as quickly as possible, and Uber drivers have an incentive to hurry because they get paid a fixed amount for each ride they provide. This means the more passengers they give rides to on a shift, the more money they can make. Speeding can mean a driver is going over the posted speed limit or a driver is going too fast for traffic, road, or weather conditions.

In either case, drivers who speed have more difficulty controlling their vehicles and sometimes don’t have adequate time to react to other vehicles or road hazards. Speeding also causes more severe accidents because it increases the force upon the impact of a crash, which results in more severe injuries that are more likely to be deadly.

Inadequate Vehicle Maintenance

Kentucky law requires Uber drivers to get annual vehicle inspections, but that doesn’t eliminate problems that might occur with a driver’s vehicle between inspections. Drivers need to perform regular preventative maintenance such as having their oil changed, checking fluids, and rotating or changing tires. Uber drivers who don’t perform regular maintenance or fix known issues with their vehicles put riders and other motorists at risk for accident and injury. Things like tire blowouts, brake failure, and stalled vehicles create conditions ripe for severe and fatal accidents if they occur at inopportune times during a ride.

Kentucky Passenger Car Collision Statistics


Source: transportation.ky.gov

Steps to Take After an Uber Accident in Kentucky

If you get involved in an Uber accident in Kentucky as a rider, a pedestrian, or the driver or passenger of another motor vehicle, take the following actions to increase the likelihood of a positive outcome in your insurance claim and/or lawsuit.

  • Seek immediate medical attention. You need to prove the Uber accident caused your injuries. You make it more difficult for your lawyer to do this if you don’t let a physician examine you as soon as possible after the accident. Even if the crash isn’t serious and you don’t need to take an ambulance, you still can sustain injuries. Some car accident injuries, such as soft-tissue damage and brain injuries, may not exhibit symptoms for hours or days after the accident. A doctor can examine you for any common accident injuries and document them in your medical record, making it difficult for Uber, the driver, or insurance companies to claim the accident did not cause your injuries.
  • Gather information. Law enforcement typically shows up at the scene of an accident, especially when a severe one. Officers will take down information, but it helps if you record information, too, if you are physically able to do so. Get the name of the Uber driver and any others involved in the accident, as well as contact information, license plate numbers, and insurance information. You should also ask for contact information from any witnesses.
  • Take photos. Accident reports include law enforcement’s narrative about an accident. You may help bolster your case by taking photos at the scene of the accident, too. Take pictures of property damage, road conditions, and hazards that might have led to the accident. You should also take pictures of any visible injuries you suffered as a result of the accident. Photographic evidence gives your lawyer increased leverage for negotiations with relevant parties.
  • Report the accident to Uber. The Uber driver involved in your accident must report the event to Uber, but you should also make sure the company knows what happened. Drivers who have had previous accidents might try to avoid reporting. You can file a report on Uber’s website to document the accident and events which led up to it. However, if possible, we encourage you to consult with an attorney first, before filing a report with Uber.
  • Consult our attorneys. Contact a qualified Uber accident lawyer here at Flora Templeton Stuart who understands how to sort through the still-evolving legal issues that come with getting into an accident involving an Uber driver. The sooner you contact an attorney, the better your chances of protecting your legal rights to compensation.

Recovering Losses From a Kentucky Uber Accident

If you suffer injuries in an Uber accident, Kentucky law permits you to seek compensation for your losses from the at-fault party. Depending on the situation, the Uber driver, and even Uber itself, might have liability for your injuries. Uber provides insurance for its drivers to cover liability to other parties, but the scope of that insurance may vary depending on the Uber driver’s activities at the time of the accident. Your attorney can help sort out exactly who should be partially or fully liable for damages related to the accident.

Damages you may have the right to recover can include:

  • Medical costs including ambulance and emergency room services, hospital stay, diagnostic imaging, surgery, aftercare, followup doctor visits, and prescription medication
  • Future medical treatment costs when an Uber accident causes a catastrophic injury requiring permanent long-term nursing care or accident victims need additional surgeries
  • Lost wages from missing work because of an Uber accident, treatment for injuries, and recovery
  • Future lost wages when accident victims suffer a permanent disability preventing them from returning to their job
  • Physical pain and suffering
  • Emotional pain and suffering
  • Loss in quality of life
  • Loss of consortium with a spouse
  • Other non-economic losses that apply to your case
  • Punitive damages in rare cases of gross negligence

If a loved one has lost their life as a result of an Uber accident, you might also have the right to seek compensation for some of the above losses. Kentucky law permits eligible surviving family members to bring a wrongful death claim against at-fault parties for damages. Costs for a visitation, funeral, memorial service, cremation, and burial can also be included in a wrongful death claim. Your lawyer will answer specific questions about your eligibility for compensation and advise you on the best path for you and your family.

Consult Our Kentucky Uber Accident Attorneys Today

Severe injuries sustained in an Uber accident can inflict harm on a victim and victim’s family. You should not have to cope with the financial burden of an Uber accident on your own. Let the skilled legal team of The Law Firm of Flora Templeton Stuart guide you through the claims and lawsuit process, while you focus on recovery and rehabilitation.

We serve clients in Bowling Green, Greenville, Glasgow, and throughout Kentucky. Contact us online or at (888) 782-9090 for a free case evaluation to discuss your Uber accident, your injuries, and how we can assist you in moving forward.