Grabbing an Uber? Buckle up and bring your face mask to combat coronavirus

Grabbing an Uber? Buckle up and bring your face mask to combat coronavirus

It's not just airlines requiring masks for passengers. Soon, Uber riders – and drivers – will need to wear face masks or some kind of face covering in post-shutdown America.

The policy, approved by the ride-hailing giant's executives in a meeting last week, is expected to become official in the coming weeks.

Uber confirmed the plan, first reported by CNN Business, to USA TODAY.

“As countries reopen, Uber is focused on safety and proceeding with caution," the company said in a statement. "Today, we continue to ask riders to stay home if they can, while shipping safety supplies to drivers who are providing essential trips."

Coronavirus treatment drug:Remdesivir to arrive in hospitals this week, Gilead CEO says

Amazon Prime:Should you continue paying for subscription service during the coronavirus pandemic?

Uber is still operating in most markets globally. While emphasizing to potential riders to stay at home – with TV ads and reminders in its mobile app – Uber already suggests that all drivers and riders wear masks. But it is not a requirement.

The company has donated rides to healthcare workers and to thousands of women at risk for domestic violence. Competitor Lyft has also donated rides for healthcare workers. Both companies have begun working with medical providers to provide transportation for patients needing to get to appointments.

Uber announced plans to buy and ship tens of millions of masks to its drivers and delivery workers; it has also sought to get drivers disinfectant supplies.

So far Uber has 1.4 million face masks that have either shipped or are in the process of being packed and shipped in the U.S., the company says. Delivery has been prioritized to cities that have asked drivers to wear face covers; those cities include New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington, D.C.

Beyond that, Uber is now planning its strategy for the coming days as cities and states begin lifting some of the stay-at-home and shelter-in-place orders.

As part of the plan, the company is developing detection technology so it knows drivers have face masks on before they begin accepting trips, CNN Business reported. Uber is also investigating methods of confirming riders have face coverings.

"Our teams are preparing for the next phase of recovery, where we will all have a role to play," Uber said in its statement. "We’ll communicate updates directly to users when ready, but in the meantime we continue to urge all riders and drivers to wear masks or face coverings when using Uber.”

Follow USA TODAY reporter Mike Snider on Twitter: @MikeSnider.

Source: https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/business/2020/05/03/coronavirus-uber-face-masks-for-drivers-riders/3074800001/

News Related

ORTHER NEWS

Trump’s ‘mission accomplished’ moment is premature and deadly. We have not defeated COVID.

Desperate for crowds and adoration, Trump has put his most fervent supporters at risk of getting a deadly disease. Future historians will be astonished. Read more »

NFLPA president JC Tretter says NFL is putting season, players at risk with its coronavirus approach

NFL Players Association president JC Tretter said Tuesday the NFL is putting the 2020 season at risk with its coronavirus approach, calling on the league to better “prioritize player safety.” “Like many other... Read more »

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro says he tested positive for the coronavirus

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro says he has tested positive for COVID-19 after months of downplaying the virus’ severity. Bolsonaro confirmed the test results while wearing a mask and... Read more »

Venice Film Festival forges ahead amid COVID-19 pandemic with reduced lineup

The show will go on for the Venice Film Festival in September, but with a few modifications due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Organizers said Tuesday that they are pushing forward with plans for... Read more »

Amtrak offers buy-one, get-one promotion on its sleeper trains amid COVID-19 — with a catch

Amtrak wants you to have sweet dreams the next time you travel — so much so that it’s sweetening the deal on its sleeper “roomettes.” The rail service is offering a buy-one-get-one-free discount... Read more »

Florida teen treated with hydroxychloroquine at home before dying of COVID-19, report says

FORT MEYERS, Fla. – The family of a 17-year-old Florida girl who died last month from COVID-19 treated her symptoms at home for nearly a week before taking her to a hospital, a... Read more »

Mookie Betts worried MLB coronavirus testing woes could prevent him from ever playing for Dodgers

During nearly four months away from the game, Mookie Betts said he “stayed away from baseball to keep myself sane.” It’s not hard to understand why. The 2018 American League Most Valuable Player... Read more »

Tom Hanks doesn’t get ‘how common sense has somehow been put into question’ with coronavirus

Read more »

Can Gov. DeSantis force Florida schools to reopen amid the coronavirus pandemic? Some school leaders seem doubtful.

PALM BEACH, Fla. — As concern about the state order spread online, some school leaders said: Not so fast. As Florida educators puzzle over how to start the new academic year, Gov. Ron... Read more »

Texas surpasses 200,000 coronavirus cases after 4th of July holiday weekend

AUSTIN, Texas – Texas reached 200,000 total COVID-19 cases Monday, just 17 days after crossing the 100,000 threshold, a figure that took the state nearly four months to hit. The grim milestone came... Read more »