I took a Shared Lyft home the other night, rather than waiting for the bus. There were two other passengers in the car when I got in — a woman in the backseat, and a man in the front. The man was dropped off first, about a mile from my own place. And as soon as he got out of the car, the inside filled up with one of the worst-smelling farts I've ever experienced in my life. I looked around the car, but neither the woman, nor the man driving, seemed to respond to this wretched scent.
So I tweeted about it.
To be clear, I wasn't trying to be a narc; I was just a little buzzed, and I thought it was funny. But as the saying goes, "The road to Hell is paved with jokes on Twitter."
To their credit, Lyft responded. And to my surprise, they were surprisingly helpful.
We moved the conversation to DMs, and I shared some details on the ride. Here's how they ultimately responded:
Thank you for sending this over to us. We totally get how uncomfortable this would be. We've gone in and unpaired you from this passenger so that if you have another shared ride with us, you won't see them along your route. If we can help with anything else, just let us know!
Again: I wasn't actually expecting anything to happen because of someone's terrible fart. I suppose — if we're being technical — I can't even be sure that it was that particular passenger.
But I'm still surprised and impressed by this response. I know that sexual harassment in particular has been a huge problem across all ride-sharing services; and I also know that I know anecdotally that Lyft has been a bit more responsive to being a more ethical company (I've also driven for Lyft myself, and felt well-taken care of). While a rancid fart is clearly different than sexual harassment, I hope this is a testament that the company really does take seriously even the slightest concerns of its passengers.
Illustration: Wikimedia Commons