Attacks on Uber drivers, allegedly by members of taxi associations, have prompted the appointment of a security team to protect them.
This comes after an Uber driver was threatened, pulled out of the car and attacked by a group of men in Ballito at the weekend.
The North Coast Courier reported that the driver had picked up a couple from a night spot and had been driving away when he was forced to stop.
The driver was reportedly badly beaten up by the men, who eventually drove away.
Two independent sources within the security industry, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that a “response team” had been appointed by Uber to safeguard their drivers and passengers.
The response team was said to be heavily armed with high-calibre weapons.
Uber South Africa spokeswoman Samantha Allenberg stressed that they were committed to ensuring the safety of all those using Uber, and that they were aware of a few incidents.
“We are aware of a few isolated instances of intimidation, by a small group of taxi drivers, against those choosing to use the Uber platform,” she said.
“Uber is all about choice and people should be free to choose the way in which they travel around their city. We are committed to the safety of everyone who uses Uber. It is why we are constantly developing new technologies to ensure safety before, during and after every ride.”
Partner-drivers had access to a security number they could call if they felt unsafe, Allenberg said.
“We remain committed to engaging in an open and constructive manner with all relevant stakeholders on the future of mobility in South Africa.”