By this point, everyone is probably familiar with Lyft. The modern era’s equivalent of the yellow taxi, this unique ride sharing service operates off an app from people’s Smartphones. And as they grow in scope and size, Lyft is also growing its devotion to important causes; particularly intoxicated driving. In states across the country, company programs are in place which will offer free rides to people whose drinking or marijuana smoking has put them over the limit.
New England happens to be a region where the most recent headlines were taking place. Over in Massachusetts, Lyft, along with state’s Chief of Police Association, have donated $50,000 to keep intoxicated drivers off the road. One of the unique considerations in this state is its inclusion of marijuana “lifts” as well. This particular movement has the full support of the Cannabis Reform Coalition (who also contributed to the pledge).
Massachusetts, like our home state of California, has legalized pot use, but officials have emphasized the dangers of mixing it with driving. Jennifer Queally, undersecretary of Massachusetts’ Office of Public Safety and Security, said safety on the road is of the utmost importance.
“It’s not uncommon to hear people say, ‘I drive better when I’m high,’” she told local outlet WBUR.com. “[But] if you are high or stoned, you are not a safe driver. And you are a danger to everyone on the road.”
Lyft executives strongly agreed with that sentiment and started their own campaign to promote safe ride sharing. In fact; if you make a pledge to remain clean on the road via their social media sites, they will reward you with up to $4.20 in ride fare credit.
Not surprisingly, Lyft’s main competitor is also hoping to be a player in this program. The famed ride share company Uber is currently in talks with local law officials throughout New England to create similar programs. “We are eager to make impaired driving a thing of the past,” Uber Boston general manager said Persis Elavia told the site.
Both Uber and Lyft did add their names to a series of east coast Public Service Announcements highlighting the dangers of intoxicated driving. In one fo the the 30-second clips, you can see a succession of people whose lives were impacted by a driver under the influence.
The video can be seen by clicking below. Hopefully it will stir up similar movements in states like our own.