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Now, Uber trips in UAE can be cancelled if riders or drivers are not wearing masks Filed on June 14, 2020
covid-19, coronavirus, UAE, Dubai, Uber, safety measures, face masks, Abdellatif Waked

(Alamy image)

A new object recognition technology will also verify if drivers are wearing masks as part of a new in-app safety checklist.

Booking an Uber ride? Make sure you're wearing a face mask because Uber drivers can now cancel your trip if you don't have one. In the same way, you may refuse the ride if your driver is not wearing a mask.

These new policies were rolled out as part of Uber's enhanced safety measures amid the Covid-19 outbreak, the firm announced on Sunday. 

Smart technologies will be used to ensure compliance with Covid-19 precautions in Uber rides. A new object recognition technology, for an instance, will verify if drivers in the UAE are wearing masks as part of a new in-app safety checklist. 

"Any driver who is not wearing a mask or other face covering will not be able to go online," Uber said in a statement. 

Drivers will also be asked to confirm if  they have taken additional safety measures, such as regularly sanitising their car and making hand sanitiser available for their riders.

Similarly, riders will be asked whether they have taken necessary safety precautions like washing their hands before getting in the car, sitting in the backseat, and opening windows for ventilation.

Only two riders per car will be allowed in line with government regulations, it added. 

The new safety measures will stay in effect until the end of June, when they will be reviewed based on the latest official health guidance.

"Now, as cities begin to reopen, we want to ensure that both riders and drivers recognise that they have a shared responsibility to make travel safer, and enough flexibility to manage this, while prioritising health and safety," said Abdellatif Waked, director and general manager at Uber Mena.

Recently, Uber also announced the launch of Uber Medics in the UAE and Saudi Arabia as part of its global commitment to 'Move What Matters', providing healthcare workers with discounted trips to and from their workplaces. 

Additionally, 'Uber By the Hour' offers riders in the UAE an hourly ride option, without having to re-request a trip at each location - strengthening safety and providing additional flexibility for riders and an additional earnings opportunity for drivers.

The company has also been providing financial assistance for up to 14 days to any driver diagnosed with Covid-19 or asked to self-isolate by a public health authority.

"Governments as well as the private sector across the globe are continually working to assess and adapt a world post the COVID-19 pandemic, and we want to use the scale and influence of our platform to proactively complement the government's efforts to help everyone stay safe and healthy," Waked said. 


Staff Reporter

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