Courier delivery and taxi drivers feel “under pressure” to complete journeys and jobs, which has ultimately resulted in collisions and even fatalities.
Research from University College London (UCL), which recently conducted an online survey, revealed that 42% of “gig economy” couriers and taxi drivers have had to report vehicle damage, as a result of a collision caused on the job. This increase in pressure makes courier and taxi delivery drivers one of the most vulnerable types of road users because of the high demands to successfully complete their journey on time.
Interestingly, 63% of those surveyed noted that they had not received adequate safety training during their job, regarding managing risks on the road, as well as training on road safety.
One in 10 people reported an injury caused by a crash during working, a shocking statistic considering these types of drivers are working for large organisations, such as Uber, Deliveroo and JustEat, to name a few.
A main concern, highlighted by the online survey results, was that 40% of drivers who use the app that powers their job became instantly distracted while driving/riding; choosing to neglect safety to complete their job.
A spokesman for Deliveroo contested these findings, noting that the popular food delivery service “…has led the way in putting safety at the heart of how we work with riders.
“Deliveroo has made safety equipment available to riders free of charge and we have worked with road safety campaigners to design hyper-reflective rider kit which maximises riders’ visibility.”
So, what is the future of road safety for courier services as they continually expand and increase food, drink and goods’ delivery services? Chief Executive, Sally Lines, said the recent report emphasised, “…very worrying reading[s] and demonstrates that an enquiry into the gig economy and road safety is needed urgently.”
Therefore, more needs to be done to keep these drivers and riders safe, instead of neglecting safety and other road users’ safety while they travel under immense pressure to finish their job, and without correct safety equipment.