The College World Series kicked off on Saturday, June 19 in Omaha, where it’s been held since 1950. This year, however, Uber decided to recruit 80 Texas drivers to help bolster the fleet in Omaha—and it’s rubbing local drivers the wrong way.
It’s not unusual for Uber to encourage drivers from other areas to help drive big events. When the Super Bowl was in Minneapolis, there were several out of town drivers “helping” with the influx of passengers. Granted, not knowing the city and not knowing how to drive in snow made matters worse rather than better in that situation. I imagine it’s much the same in Omaha right now (minus the snow, of course).
Not to mention, local drivers are getting fewer requests because of the increased number of drivers in the area.
According to an article published by KETV, written by Michelle Bandur:
“Uber has recruited 80 Texas drivers to work the CWS and that has some local rideshare drivers and one Nebraska lawmaker trying to put the brakes on the out-of-town business.
‘We know what bars are going to be hopping and where to go, the back roads, alleys access to interstates,’ said Omaha Uber driver, Mark Eaton.
Eaton said some College World Series fans may not get a good experience if they get one of the 80 Texas drivers invited by Uber to score the baseball business.
‘These 80 drivers, that’s 80 less rides I could be making and with out-of-state drivers, it’s more competition,’ he said.
‘Why do we want to take jobs away from Nebraskans?’ asked State Senator Carol Blood. ‘That’s the issue, and is there enough business to go around? There really isn’t.’”
The argument seems to be that this event isn’t bringing in enough extra business to warrant the influx of drivers, and therefore, does not justify taking jobs away from local drivers who bank on this event happening every year.
It’s especially troublesome considering just how many years Omaha has hosted this event. The city and transportation networks in the area likely have a pretty good idea of how to handle the situation without Uber intervening on their behalf.
Unfortunately, there’s nothing stopping these drivers from moving in on the turf of the Omaha workers. The College World Series is scheduled through the end of the month.
Do you drive in Omaha? Have you seen an influx in drivers/lack of pings during the College World Series? Share your experiences below!
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