Uber Criticized for Surge Pricing During London Attack

Jun 05, 2017

Uber drew criticism on Sunday by London users accusing the cab-hailing app of charging surge prices around the London Bridge area during the moments after the horrific terror attack there.

On Saturday night, some 7 people were killed and dozens injured when three terrorists mowed a white van over pedestrians and attacked people in the Borough Market area with knives. Police killed the attackers within eight minutes of the first call reporting the attack.

Furious Twitter users accused the app of profiting from the attack with surge prices. Amber Clemente claimed that the surge price was more than two times the normal amount.

User Idris Bhayat said the company ramped up prices in areas affected by the attack.

Uber responded to the claims the next day, saying they suspended surge pricing as soon as they heard of the attack.

Tom Elvidge, the general manger of Uber in London, told the Guardian that the company suspended surge pricing at around 10:50 p.m.— nearly an hour after the attack started. Elvidge said that the company would refund all fares for riders in the affected areas following the attack.

In a statement seen by the Guardian, Elvidge said: “Our hearts go out to everybody affected by yet another horrific attack on our city. We’d like to thank all the drivers who helped tens of thousands of Londoners get home safely last night. As soon as we heard about the incident we immediately suspended dynamic pricing all around the area of the attacks—and shortly afterwards across the whole of central London—just as we did following the attacks in Manchester and Westminster. We are also ensuring all rides from around the affected area were free of charge. Our team is also working with the Metropolitan police to help them get any footage from drivers who were in the area at the time.”

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