How SMU Students are staying safe while using Uber

After the recent death of Samantha Josephson, users of ride-share apps like Uber are concerned for their safety. Hannah Jones found out what members of the SMU community do to stay safe while using Uber.

“One time I got in an uber, and he was asking me questions that made me feel really uncomfortable,” SMU junior Camille Van Dorpe said.

When she calls an Uber, she knows safety is a priority.

“A lot of times I will share the ride with my friend so they can track me if I’m going somewhere and I don’t feel safe,” Van Dorpe said.

But University of South Carolina student Samantha Josephson didn’t follow these safety instructions when she mistakenly got into a car she thought was her Uber. Uber has a list of safety tips on its website, reminding riders to check their driver’s name, photo, and license plate before getting into the vehicle. The SMU Police Department agrees with these tips.

“Let people know what you’re doing,” Lieutenant Jimmy Winn of the SMU Police Department said. “If you’re going to a destination let people know ‘I’m taking an uber at this point and at this time.’”

Your phone can also be an important tool.

“Keep your phone handy when you’re inside the car because it’ll tell you the route and if you deviate from that route whatsoever you can start asking questions then,” Winn said.

But Van Dorpe says she plans to keep using Uber.

“I know I’ll continue to use uber even though sort of freak accidents and things like this happen,” Van Dorpe said.

Uber says it’s working with college campuses to keep accidents like this from happening.