Assessing the Impact of Ridesharing Services on Public Health and Safety Outcomes

Ridesharing companies have emphasized the potential of their services to help reduce drunk driving. Ridesharing services also fill gaps in existing transportation networks by providing cheaper, on-demand alternatives to taxis and public transportation in traditionally underserved neighborhoods.

The findings of this report link a higher intensity of Google Trends in a specific metro area to a reduction in both overall and alcohol-involved traffic fatalities.

Specifically, 1 percent increase in ridership search intensity on Google Trends translates into saving 2.19 lives per month in the average metro area by reducing overall traffic fatalities and 0.3 lives per month in the average metro area by avoiding alcohol-involved traffic fatalities.

The report explains however, that it is difficult to establish a definitive causal mechanism between search trends and the underlying phenomenon of interest. The results of the study therefore remain exploratory in nature.

Op-Ed: Ride-Sharing Can Reduce Holiday-Season Traffic Deaths, San Francisco Chronicle


Published December 26, 2017