What should you do when an Uber passenger poops in your car? You might be thinking, “Wow, that sounds pretty ridiculous,” and it’s a little bit hard for me to say it with a straight face. To be clear, this has never happened to me, but we have actually gotten a couple of emails about it lately.
Check out my video to see the answer, then read the video transcript below if you like to read.
Poop-er…What would you do?
When I first read this situation, I was thoughts to myself, “Man, I have no idea what I would do in that situation.” I sent a few emails back and forth with a couple drivers who this happened to and it’s actually sort of a serious situation. Not that it happens very frequently, but there are situations like this.
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This type of damage can go above and beyond the cleaning fee, but there are a few steps that you can take to make sure that you get all the damage covered. A driver told me that he got a passenger who was wearing an adult diaper. About halfway through the ride he started smelling something a little funky.
Related: Will drivers get a cleaning fee for water spills?
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When the passenger got out of the car, he turned around, looked at the seat, and saw a big old poop stain. Someone didn’t actually like pop a deuce right in his car, but the diaper leaked. The worst part about this that it was actually an Uberpool ride, which is not cool for anyone. So you can imagine the other passenger was probably not too happy either. So the driver noticed this as soon as the passenger got out obviously because it smelled terrible and there was a huge poop stain on the back seat.
Always take lots of pictures
When anything like this happens, you want to take dozens of pictures. 10, 20, 30 pictures. In this case, Uber sent him a $150 cleaning fee, which is the max that he could receive, but as you can imagine, it’s pretty tough to get poop out of a seat. It’s extra expensive it’s a biohazard.
A few cleaning places weren’t able to help him. He got a quote for a new seat from Toyota and it was for $965. They had to actually take the seat out. The question is, “Who’s going to pay for it?”
Who pays for damage that is more than the cleaning fee and less than the $1,000 deductible?
Vomit is vomit. It usually comes out. You can sort of puke-proof your vehicle sometimes and maybe some people need to poop-proof their vehicle. Uber’s insurance only has $1,000 deductible so unless the damage is over $1,000, you’re out of luck there. What if the passenger opens the car into traffic and a bicycle hits it and damages the door for $895 of damage. Uber’s not going to cover that because it doesn’t meet the deductible, but who’s responsible?
If you go to Uber after the fact and say, “Hey, I need this passenger’s contact info. They screwed up my car,” just like what happened with this pooping passenger, Uber won’t share that with you because of privacy details. I’ve been emailed many different times about situations like this. I’ve never heard of Uber sharing a passenger’s contact details after the fact due to privacy laws. So in this type of situation, it actually behooves you to get the passenger’s contact info yourself.
Get passenger contact info before they leave. Uber won’t give it to you
If significant damage happens but the damage doesn’t exceed a thousand dollars, you want to make sure that you get that passenger’s contact info so that you can actually work with them to pay for it.
Let’s say you watched this video after you incident and you realize that you should have gotten their contact info, Uber won’t be much help. But there are a couple things you can do. You can always go back to the pickup and/or drop-off addresses and try to find the passenger. If it’s a house or something like that, just knock on the door. That’s one way to get in contact with the passenger.
If you explain the situation to the passenger, most of the time they’ll be reasonable. You can say, “Hey, you leaked in my car and Uber’s not going to cover it. I know they charged you a cleaning fee, but here’s my bill. Here’s the damage. Can we work something out?” I think that most people in that situation are going to be pretty reasonable.
I’m not an attorney or anything, but you might have to go that route. A small claims court would probably be the best situation there. Then at that point it may be worth it to go after the full damages. It is kind of joking matter, but at the same time this is your livelihood. If someone damages your vehicle and you’re out of work and they’re at fault, it’s in your best interest to go after them for everything: Lost wages, damages, etc.
You can’t rely on Uber for help beyond the cleaning fee
It would be great if Uber provided a little more support in these types of one-off situations, and II can tell you that Uber isn’t a lot of help even if you get into a big accident. It really pays to be proactive and, hopefully avoid poopers.
Hopefully you guys don’t experience this, but if you do, feel free to let me know. Maybe you haven’t had someone poop in your car, but maybe you’ve had a similar situation. Let me know how you handled it. Feel free to like, comment, subscribe to the channel. I look forward to hearing from you!
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