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Rideshare companies face King County officials about passenger safety



(AP)

Company officials from Uber and answered questions Monday afternoon when officials pressed them on recent accounts involving their drivers.

RELATED: Uber responds to potential rideshare tax in Seattle

In the past two months, several allegations of sexual assault were made against their drivers.

King County officials now know how the companies are screening drivers. help answer safety questions, including how background checks for drivers are handled.

"We believe our background checks have been proven to be robust, thorough, and fair," said Uber representative Caleb Weaver during the hearing.

Before Monday's meeting, Council member Pete von Reichbauer says they want to ask what safeguards are in place to protect passengers.

Seen an uptick in reports of misconduct and assault at TNC drivers both in the Seattle area and across the country, "said von Reichbauer, who chairs the GAO committee. “With this hearing, we hope to find out what safeguards Uber and Lift in place to ensure that when passengers engage their services, they will be safe and their travel information will be secure.”

Driving the point home, two rideshare drivers were arraigned on Monday morning

Lift driver Mohammed Hussein was arrested on one count of indecent liberties, accused of sexually assaulting a woman picked up on Capitol Hill, after she fell asleep in his car. His bail was set at $ 1

0,000. Another rideshare driver, Ghassan Shakir, was also arraigned Monday. The 35-year-old not guilty of charges he handcuffed to his car and sexually assaulted while while working as a Lyft driver.

There are also allegations that Shakir may have raped several women he picked up in Bellevue and SeaTac . His bail was set at $ 750,000

And according to police, Israel Ramos-Islas posed as a rideshare driver and sexually assaulted a woman picked up outside of Ballard bar.

Riders should always check their apps and make sure they driver's plates match

MyNorthwest and KIRO Radio Staff contributed to this report


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