In a few weeks, if you’re planning to catch an Uber, you’ll need to wear a face mask or face covering during the entirety of your trip. That’s according to a report from CNN Business that says Uber will roll out the new requirement in select countries in the coming weeks.
The United States is reportedly one of those countries where all riders and drivers will be required to have face coverings. The new policy was reportedly approved by Uber executives at a meeting last week.
Matter of fact, Uber is said to be working on in-app mask recognition technology that will scan a driver’s face to confirm they are wearing a mask or other covering before they are even able to start accepting trips. It is unknown if Uber will roll out the same in-app authentication for passengers.
CNN Business says Uber’s head of safety communications, Andrew Hasbun, confirmed the new policy, as well as the development of technology that will detect whether a driver is wearing a mask, saying:
As countries reopen, Uber is focused on safety and proceeding with caution. Today, we continue to ask riders to stay home if they can, while shipping safety supplies to drivers who are providing essential trips. At the same time, our teams are preparing for the next phase of recovery, where we will all have a role to play.
What is not known is if an Uber driver will have the power to eject a passenger from their vehicle if that passenger takes off their mask mid-trip, nor whether that driver can refuse to pick up a passenger in the first place if they are not wearing a face covering when they arrive for pickup.
As Hasbun told CNN Business, “We’ll communicate updates directly to users when ready, but in the meantime we continue to urge all riders and drivers to wear masks or face coverings when using Uber.”