uberxsave
uberX supporters at a previous Seattle City Council hearing. (GeekWire File Photo)

About 900 people currently drive for uberX in Seattle, and the number of active drivers “regularly exceeds” 300 at any given moment, Uber said today — predicting longer wait times and implying that there will be an increase in drunk driving if the Seattle City Council goes through with its plan to put limits on Uber and rival transportation network companies.

That’s twice the planned limit of 150 active drivers that the city plans to impose on each company under its new regulations.

[UPDATE: The scheduled vote has been postponed a week, to March 17, because a councilmember will be out of town and unable to participate.]

Uber also released new details of its insurance policy, which has been a sticking point in the city’s deliberations. The company said its current insurance includes $1 million of liability coverage per incident, $1 million of uninsured motorist coverage per incident, and a commitment to cover collision costs if an Uber driver’s personal collision insurance is found not to apply to a particular incident.

The details were released in advance of a scheduled vote in which the Seattle City Council is poised to impose the new limits on Uber, Lyft and Sidecar, following up on a preliminary 5-4 decision. The companies are making a last-minute effort to head off the new regulations, saying that the City Council is going too far in an effort to appease the traditional taxi industry.

In a news release this afternoon disclosing the numbers, Uber said, “Without a functioning rideshare system operating at market demand, riders will see wait times increase and caps will likely have the unfortunate outcome of more people choosing to get into their own car after a night out on the town.”

Given the 900 total drivers in its system in Seattle, the company also said that about 600 Uber drivers will lose the ability to earn an income under the rules, not counting the likelihood of further growth if not for the planned limits.

Stay tuned to GeekWire for more coverage of this issue leading up to the vote on Monday.

RelatedWashington state rep: ‘Artificially capping rideshares serves absolutely no public interest’

Comments

  • Adam

    Yeah, so I bet they could have shared that information earlier rather than taking a hard stance on sharing any usage data. I’m trying to think of a good Surge pun for this… but can’t.

    • pitbullstew

      try: deny delay litigate?

  • Becky

    Uber sued for wrongful death of 6-year-old girl in San Francisco because their driver was on their App when he ran over the little girl. http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/story?id=9408512

    • Guest

      At the risk of sounding insensitive, please stop referencing this example. The fact of the matter is that taxi drivers cause accidents all the time and the last 4 Uber drivers I’ve had have all been ex-taxi drivers. Enough.

      • ClaimsAdjuster

        That taxi drivers get into accidents is irrelevant. What is important is that the UberX vehicle in this accident, like most of those in Seattle, was not carrying valid insurance. Both Uber and the driver’s insurance are fighting paying anything to the injured family.

      • pitbullstew

        maybe you should rethink your most supple disposition and realize that were it not for the illegal conduct of uuber and its rogue associate the grir would be alive today, and if she had been struck by a fully compliant and insured cab livery or para driver then an insurance polciy would not be in dispute as is the case where uber who denies any liabilty what so ever? This is the what you want to see?
        This issue is fair game paid forward by the blood of an innocent vs corporate greed

        • Slaggggg

          What is a grir ?

        • Guest Guy

          Um, yea right. All of a sudden the taxi industry is all about safety? Who in the world are you trying to kid? Please.

  • pitbullstew

    so what we are findiing out here is that Uber is operating illegaly with a possible 900 defendants to any civil or criminal law suit that may be filed against them including a FTC action for surge (price gouging) pricing then? Is that right?

    • Slaggggg

      Go back to driving your taxi, hater.

  • Slaggggg

    How many of those drivers are active *in the city of Seattle* ? Seattle has no power to regular Uber drivers outside Seattle itself …

    • Ed O

      The city should put explosive ankle bracelets around the left leg of all the Uber drivers. Then have the ankle of the 301st driver within city limits blow up to ensure its ordinances are obeyed.

      Of course, Uber and its drivers will be responsible for carrying additional insurance to cover this eventuality…

  • Marco

    Try Uber, an awesome on demand car service!

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    • Boner

      Another paid troll.

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