A new study finds more ridesharing trips with services such as Uber or Lyft may result in fewer alcohol-involved crashes.
Researchers studied alcohol-involved crashes in Chicago, where rideshare data, including the location where each trip begins and ends, is publicly available, HealthDay reports. They matched 962 crashes involving alcohol with 962 crashes that did not involve alcohol. They evaluated the density per square mile of rideshare trips in progress when the accidents occurred.
They discovered the density of active rideshare trips near a crash was associated with lower odds that the crash involved alcohol. They didn’t find a similar effect for taxis.
“The suggestion is that ridesharing is cheaper and easier to access than taxis and so it affects drunk driving to a greater extent than taxis do,” said researcher Christopher Morrison, Ph.D., of the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University. “It’s more convenient to access a rideshare. We find effects for ridesharing, but we don’t find any effects for taxis.”