The lockdown to contain Covid-19 cintinues across India but states have announced certain relaxations in select business operations. Cab aggregators like Uber are getting back to business gradually with specific restrictions to ensure social distancing. In this regard, Uber India has also brought in new safety measures.
In an online press conference, Sachin Kansal, global senior director - Safety Product, Uber mentioned that, "it is mandatory for both drivers and passengers to wear a face mask throughout the journey." Along with this he also shared a few other safety measures that should be followed by both the driver and rider.
Uber has also introduced innovative and interactive measures like uploading a selfie in the Uber drivers app to verify if drivers are wearing a mask. This photo verification was earlier used to confirm whether the driver is the one registered for driving the vehicle.
Sachin added, “All the drivers need to wear the mask before they go online in India, from today. The driver can cancel a ride if the customer is not wearing a mask and a new option for reasons to cancel has been added. And, customers will not be allowed to sit in the front seat. The rider has to handle his own luggages to maintain social distancing.”
Sachin explained that, “The drivers have to go through a set of safety checklist that includes wearing a mask, heath assessment to make sure drivers don't have any symptoms of Covid-19. They also need to sanitise their vehicle door handles and other places after every ride. The company will be providing the necessary supplies and these are availabe in 90 centres that are set up across 14 cities in India, so far.”
Uber will provide video education to drivers on how to wear a mask, on how to effectively discard or reuse it and more safety videos. Sachin added that if a driver or the passenger does not wear a mask during the ride, it can be reported. “The company can also ban the customer from the app if there are frequent such complaints.“