One Twitter user warned the public of a driver from a ride-hailing app who supposedly made a passenger feel unsafe during the ride home.
This sparked a discussion online on the safety issue of passengers with these services, specifically Grab Philippines.
A certain @rinanoconn shared screenshots of a Grab driver and the conversation he had with her friend on Twitter. The screenshots have the driver’s name, the plate number of the car he used and the booking identification number.
She cautioned riders about man’s actions, should they meet him in the future. She tagged the official Twitter account of Grab Philippines in a subsequent tweet.
BEWARE OF THIS GRAB DRIVER ‼️ MY FRIEND HAD TO BEG TO BE BROUGHT HOME WTH?? your drivers are so unprofessional 🙃💩 pic.twitter.com/rB9DoXMvnh
— rina (@rinanoconn) October 17, 2018
The rider said the driver intentionally missed her drop-off point, asking her instead to ride farther with him and eat.
“Takot na takot friend ko mag report kasi baka puntahan siya sa bahay. Please do something about this for everyone’s safety,” she said.
The post soon got the attention of Grab, which responded to the thread in a series of comments.
Twitter user @rinanoconn updated that Grab banned the driver mentioned earlier.
“They called my friend (the passenger) last night to let her know that he was banned from Grab because apparently this wasn’t the first time he’s done this to someone,” she said.
Grab Philippines currently sits as the largest ride-sharing company in the Philippines after it merged with Uber, its main competitor.
In May, the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board introduced other TNVS companies for commuters to choose from aside from Grab. These are MiCab, OWTO, GoLag, HirNa and Hype.
How Grab responds to safety concerns
Some users also shared similar stories with Grab drivers to the thread, wherein their safety was also put at risk during their ride home. They tagged Grab’s Twitter account in their comments.
Happened with me too. My driver said sexual things and asked me if I want to go to motel with him. My normal 30 min ride took me 1 and half hour.
— attitude problem (@rachcasimiro) October 18, 2018
@grabph this happened to me too, my driver said sexual things or rather was implicating that he should be the first one to do me. I already reported but i am still scared about taking grab alone again because of what happened. Pls take care of your passengers.
— Florence🌹 (@flxrencex) October 18, 2018
Grab’s social media handler was quick to respond to these posts and apologize for the bad ride experiences with the Grab partner-driver.
Based on the responses, Grab requires the rider concerned to send the management a direct message first and file a report on its official help center. Only then will Grab take action on it.
In the thread, Grab further specified that its management needs the booking ID, mobile number and email address, aside from other details of the event to determine the appropriate measures to address it.
However, such responses did not sit well with some users who suggested that the company should at least file a police report on behalf of the victim.
When you visit Grab’s help center, it caters to the needs of both the passengers and the drivers.
In terms of complaints, it instructs people to provide them the details first via email, call or a form on the page.
Meanwhile, a finance blog called MoneyMax.ph advises passengers to access Grab’s in-app feature called “Share My Ride” for further safety.
With this, you can share the details of your commute, including the name of the driver and the car’s plate number, to someone you trust. This person can then track your whereabouts until you arrived at your destination.
Further security measures
Passenger safety in TNVS rides such as Grab is a similarly concern in many parts of the world, such as in China and in the United States, where this type of business has a large following.
According to a study called “Passenger Safety in Ride-Sharing Services,” the researchers recommended the use of dash cams and a distress alarm on the car to increase security of the passenger and the driver throughout the ride.
Personal security, after all, is the contributing factor in customer’s satisfaction in transportation services, particularly in private transportation.
“While personal security is a rising issue in public transportation, it is becoming a matter of great concern and debate in ride-sharing services. The chance of undergoing assault, violence, harassment or attack has become a critical factor in traveler’s decision making,” the study stated.
This research was part of a scientific journal that was published last April.