New York City taxi drivers and Uber drivers have experienced ongoing turbulence in the recent months due to increasing competition and a significant cut in fares (Uber cut its fairs by 15% in January 2016). To offset losses in wages many drivers are working additional hours. To some, including the Taxi and Limousine Commission, this as a possible safety threat and increases the risk of personal injury to other drivers and pedestrians.
Many fear that the driver’s physical and mental capacity to drive safely are compromised when drivers work prolonged shifts.
According to the Center for Disease Control:
“…Drowsy driving was responsible for 72,000 crashes, 44,000 injuries, and 800 deaths in 2013.4 However, these numbers are underestimated and up to 6,000 fatal crashes each year may be caused by drowsy drivers.”
Current regulations allow NYC taxi drivers to work for up to 12 hours prior to taking a break. The amount of break time required is not specified, theoretically a driver could be on the road for up to 24 hours with only a couple of minutes break time in between.
In coming months the Taxi and Limousine Commission will better define and implement regulations that will help to prevent drowsy taxi/Uber drivers from seriously injuring other drivers and pedestrians in New York City.
If you or a loved one has been injured by a drowsy driver please contact us today. We have convenient locations throughout New York and New Jersey.