WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — While there are a lot of unanswered questions about what happened to Gary Levin, the Palm Beach Gardens Lyft driver who vanished earlier this week, his disappearance has shaken a number of rideshare drivers.
Both Uber and Lyft monitor rides for unusual activity, like long stops or route deviations and will contact drivers if something seems off.
Uber drivers can call 911 directly through the app if they need help, and Lyft offers live emergency help through ADT security, which can directly connect with law enforcement.
Lyft also said it is taking other steps to detect and prevent unsafe rider behavior.
For new and existing rider accounts that the company believes to exhibit fraudulent or unsafe behavior, they can temporarily and permanently deactivate accounts, blocking users from creating new accounts, and requiring riders to submit additional information before requesting a ride.
Click here for Uber's safety procedures and policies.
The company also said its research shows the majority of individuals who used the app to commit crimes used an anonymous payment method like prepaid cards, gift cards, Venmo or PayPal.
Some markets now require an additional form of identification from riders using anonymous payment methods.
For more about Lyft's safety measures, click here.
Uber driver Maria Brown said she takes her safety seriously while driving for the ridesharing app.
"I love driving for Uber," Brown said. "I meet a lot of exciting people and sometimes they just talk to me because I have the gift of gab, so we just go back and forth, and we have a good time."
She considers herself very conservative when deciding which rides to accept, always keeping safety top of mind.
"I feel if I keep them safe and keep them talking, I know where their head is at," Brown said.
She offered her thoughts about the Levin case.
"I really freaked out because my husband told me about it, and I was like, 'There's no way. How did Lyft not know where he was?'" Brown said. "Maybe he turned off his phone or the ride because they were giving him money. I don't know. I don't know what situation he was in, but it's scary."
She said it won't change her desire to get behind the wheel but will make her more aware of her surroundings.