National News

It's illegal for children under 18 to ride alone in Uber

Posted August 17

— With school starting soon, parents are trying to save time while shuttling their kids around with apps such as Uber and Lyft.

A couple of Uber drivers in the area said they've given rides to high school students before and didn't realize Uber and Lyft both have policies for minors.

Erika Watson is going on one year giving rides to people with Uber. Watson said her passengers have been under the age of 18 before.

"If the parent is paying for it, you know I think that's sometimes a better thing than them walking across town," Watson said

With Uber and Lyft, you must be 18 to register and use the apps. Minors must be accompanied by an adult.

Watson said most of her riders are young adults.

"I think it should be the parent who should be in control of it but a lot of kids are getting bank cards at a young age so you don't want kids just messing around," Watson said. "If it was a real young kid and I was late at night and no parent in sight I would call the police."

Hartford resident Joyce Bosco uses Uber to get around and thinks additional safety checks for children should be considered.

"If people are going to continue to use it then what are the safety measures they need to put in place in order for that to be OK," Bosco said.

Hartford resident Carlos Marrero said he always feels safe riding an Uber, but has mixed feelings about children riding alone.

"When they send you a picture of your driver it makes it much more easier to understand who is coming and makes you feel safe," Marrero said. "It's kind of nerve-racking to know there's a child underage taking it."

Eyewitness News wanted to see if similar policies are in place with local taxi companies. The Yellow Cab in Connecticut gives rides to those 16 years old and older.

A spokesperson with Uber told Eyewitness News that if they find a minor using their ride-sharing app they will immediately deactivate that account until the user can prove that they're over 18.

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