Uber unveils plans to tackle drowsy driving

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  • Uber is rolling out a new policy in the US that requires drivers to take a six-hour break after 12 hours of driving.

    The update is expected to be rolled out over a two-week period.

    Drivers will receive a warning after 10 hours of driving, with a second warning coming after the 11th hour, and a final notification 30 minutes before the limit.

    After 12 hours, the app will automatically go offline, with drivers unable to pick up fares for six hours.

    The company said in a blog post that it's introducing the time limit to "do our part to help prevent drowsy driving."

    Drowsy driving is the cause of up to 6,000 fatal crashes annually, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. 

    Previously the company was against the idea of limiting drivers' hours, saying, "Uber does not set hours or shifts and drivers who partner with us can choose the hours they work."

    Competitor service, Lyft, has required drivers to take a six-hour break for every 14 hours spent driving from January 2014.

    "We want to keep our riders and drivers safe," said Sachin Kansal, Uber's Director of Product Management. "The approach we have taken is irrespective of who's responsible for managing this. We want to help the drivers manage that in the app so they have all the visibility, so they know how much they can drive and when they need to go offline."

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