Uber driver refused fare, passenger says

Was told trip would be 'too short'

Uber vehichle parked outside a restaurant
An Uber driver is facing criticism after allegedly turning down a passenger. Vatche Ayvazian/ Toronto Observer

An Uber driver is facing criticism for allegedly turning down a passenger for a ride after deeming it “too short.”

Mark Lebsky decided to spend his Saturday night (Feb. 2) with a group of friends at a restaurant on King St. West. Later that night, one of Lebsky’s friends, Arthur Hatch, suggested they go to his house for a game of poker. They left the restaurant and approached an Uber driver for a ride. They were turned down immediately, said Lebsky, who didn’t get the name of the driver.

“I asked the driver to take me and my friends from King Street to College, and he said, ‘I can’t do that, it’s too short.’”

Gary Drimer, the cook at the restaurant, was on his break and witnessed the incident.

“It felt awful,” he said. “It was a really cold night, and they had to wait around 15 minutes until the next driver was able to pick them up.”

According to the Toronto Municipal Code, Uber drivers can refuse someone a ride only if that person:

  • owes such owner or driver for a previous fare;
  • upon being requested by such owner or driver, refuses to disclose his or her final destination before entering the cab;
  • asks to be driven to a remote place in circumstances which such driver reasonably believes to be unsafe;
  • is unduly obnoxious or abusive;
  • smokes in the cab;
  • fails or refuses to make an advance payment when requested by the driver

Short fares are not a legally applicable reason for turning down a fare.

Jackie Holmes, who handles complaints for Uber, declined to comment.

About this article

Posted: Feb 11 2019 12:15 pm
Filed under: News