This Week in Rideshare: Hikes, Ukraine and Snoop.

MONDAY 2/21/22

A North Carolina motorcyclist who lost his leg as a result of a collision with an Amazon delivery truck in Virginia Beach is suing the e-commerce giant, alleging that unrealistic expectations on delivery drivers led to negligence behind the wheel.

Justin Hartley was driving his 2007 Harley Davidson motorcycle south on Blackwater Road in Virginia Beach on Oct. 4 when a rented Hertz truck with an Amazon logo turned directly into his lane of travel, the lawsuit said. The truck struck Hartley and he sustained severe injuries, including fractures to his left wrist and left leg. Doctors were unable to save Hartley’s left leg and had to amputate it just below the knee.

TUESDAY 2/22/22

Ald. Roderick Sawyer (6th), who still chairs the Council’s Committee on Health and Human Relations, is proposing a sweeping ordinance to stop ride-hailing companies from making “record profits” while drivers barely make ends meet.

“They need a decent increase. They feel like they’re getting shafted. They say the pay is much too low and they’re not getting the percentage of the surge pricing they feel they’re entitled to,” Sawyer said.

Sawyer acknowledged consumers already squeezed by inflation will pay the price for putting more money in the drivers’ pockets.

WEDNESDAY 2/23/22

…But there was a reason that many restaurants hadn’t focused on delivery before the pandemic: Delivery is a pain. It’s expensive, since restaurants have to hire drivers or outsource to third-party providers like DoorDash (DASH) or Grubhub (GRUB), which charge a fee that cuts into their already razor-thin margins. It’s also stressful for employees, who must balance taking care of in-store customers while filling increasing numbers of to-go orders. And when deliveries go wrong, the restaurants take the blame, whether or not it’s their fault.

For some restaurants, the economics of delivery simply don’t add up. Third-party providers charge fees which can be as high as 30%. Restaurants, particularly independent ones, already have thin margins. For some, delivery fees can mean operating in the red.

Companies have been raising prices on everything from menu items to consumer goods and are saying that so far, customers are sticking around. But that won’t last forever.

THURSDAY 2/24/22

Ride-hailing app provider Lyft Inc (LYFT.O) said on Thursday it is offering its employees in Ukraine financial support for emergency supplies or to temporarily move, along with increased time off, amid a Russian invasion of the country.

Lyft said in December it was on track to have 60 employees in Ukraine, including engineers and scientists, by the end of last year.

FRIDAY 2/25/22

Last month, Snoop Dogg posted complaints about an Uber Eats order he never received on Instagram. The video has more than 4 million views and 12,000 comments.

“There’s my picture there and also there is my first name,” said the driver, Sayd, who didn’t want to his last name on camera.

He believes the rapper may have compromised his safety by posting the video to his millions of followers, because it shows his name, photo and license plate number.

“I contacted the customer many times and I also followed the protocol by the book,” Sayd said.

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