8 months ago
Uber, the ride-sharing app, is being criticized for keeping its surge pricing in place as panicked crowds tried to escape Saturday’s terror attack in London.
Users went on social media to bash the app company for charging inflated prices and being too slow to end the surge pricing—even as attackers plowed into people on the London Bridge with a van and then stabbed patrons at nearby bars.
Many detractors accused the company of trying to profit from the attacks that killed seven and wounded 48 more.
— Amber Clemente (@yankeeamber) June 3, 2017
— Idris Bhayat (@IdiiBhaxx) June 4, 2017
Last night, black cab drivers were evacuating people out of the London Bridge area, free of charge, while Uber were apparently surging.
— Bryn Phillips (@Bryn__Phillips) June 4, 2017
According to the New York Post, Tom Elvidge, Uber’s general manager in London, defended the company.
“As soon as we heard about the incident we immediately suspended dynamic pricing all around the area of the attacks – and shortly afterward across the whole of central London – just as we did following the attacks in Manchester and Westminster,” he said.
Uber uses an algorithm that raises prices when demand is high. The program is controversial, but Uber typically suspends it during emergencies and disasters.
According to CNN, the first calls to emergency services were made at 10:08 p.m. Saturday. Uber said it had disabled surge pricing in the immediate attack area by 10:50 p.m. and extended the suspension to include all of central London by 11:40 p.m.