A tragedy has struck a college town that is making people examine safety methods when it comes to rideshares. Samantha Josephson entered a car she thought was her Uber around 2 a.m. on March 29 in Columbia, South Carolina. The car was a black Chevrolet Impala. The driver was not Josephson’s Uber driver, and the 21 year old student at the University of South Carolina was reported missing by her friends the next day. Josephson’s body was soon found by two turkey hunters 70 miles away in Clarendon County.
Since then, the police have arrested the driver, 24 year old Nathaniel D. Rowland. They’re charging him with murder and kidnapping, as they found traces of Josephson’s blood in his car, activated child safety locks in the back seat, and discovered Josephson’s phone along with bleach and window cleaner.
Events like this are terrifying and tragic. It’s important to remember safety tips to avoid instances like this from ever happening again. When you get an Uber, you get certain information so you can cross check that you’re getting in the right car with the right driver. Uber will send you the driver’s name, the car’s make and model, and license plate.
When asking the driver their name, avoid phrasing like “Is your name X,” because the driver can simply agree. Asking “What’s your name” is open-ended and will be an easy answer for your actual Uber driver, but not so much if someone isn’t. Don’t worry about taking up time double checking these items. You’re prioritizing your safety and that always comes first. There’s also the added safety of numbers. If you arrive to a destination with friends, leave with that same group. Don’t let people leave on their own or splinter off, including yourself. You can protect yourself when using a rideshare app.
While you can take safety precautions, your Uber driver may still make negligent driving errors. If you’ve been injured in a rideshare car, an Uber accident lawyer from the Rideshare Law Group can help you. Contact us today.