What if you could make $300 a day, would you work any number of hours to get to that goal? What if you were responsible for a passenger in your car, and that job was driving? That’s exactly what’s happening in Nashville with the Uber and Lyft drivers. We’ve found drivers working over 15 hours in a day behind the wheel.
How would you feel knowing your Uber/Lyft driver was working 15 hours behind the wheel? Would you feel that was safe for them to drive you to your destination? The number of hours that an Uber/Lyft Driver can work in any day or week is not limited by either Uber/Lyft or by any local/state/federal regulations, at least not here in Nashville.
Here in Nashville, there is nothing to stop a driver from driving unlimited hours – and many do. We have examples of drivers working 10, 12, 15 hours a day – and that’s in addition to some of them working a full 8 hours at their full time job. If they were a commercial driver they would be subjected to the DOT regulations, such as 60-hour/7-day limit and 70-hour/8-day limit, and a 14 hour consecutive-hour period, and 11-driving hours during that time, along with mandatory off/rest time of 10 hours – but no such limits currently exist here.
Would you drive 11.5 hours in a day (just one one platform – there may have been additional hours on a second one) to make nearly $300? Many ride-share drivers are doing just that. Here’s last Saturday’s hours just for one driver, Eric Melton:
Here’s a brand new driver, working 15 hours a day behind the wheel:
Montgomery Breda’s $566 earning for one week seems average for 34.5 hours of driving time for one week – until you realize he also works a full-time 40/hr week job in addition to those 34.5 hours of driving time just for Lyft. That’s a minimum of 74.5 hours worked this week, but likely much more actual time when you including waiting, prep, etc.. An additional 34.5 hours means he was either working an extra 7 hours after his 8 hour day-job shift, or working 34.5 hours in a weekend, or a combination of the two. Even working a full 8 hours driving on the weekend days, that leaves an extra 4 hours or driving on every weekday.
Driver Shawn Reed – just last week worked nearly 62 hours behind the wheel for Lyft. He worked additional hours for Uber (since you can’t be actively driving for both, if you average the pay that’s approximately an extra 18 hours of Uber driving in addition to Lyft’s 62 hours) – a potential total of 80 hours a week behind the wheel in 7 days.
Using the same averages, here’s a week in April where he worked an estimated 58 hours just for Uber in one week consisting of 90 trips – this does not account for any Lyft hours driven:
Here, we have drivers admitting that if they work over 8 hours driving they are doing thing like missing exits and making ‘stupid mistakes’. Jernigan below admits to working 40-50 hours, in 3.5 consecutive days.
Robert Stafford, who also drives a commercial truck for his full-time job, drives Uber to make extra money. So he is regulated in the max hours while driving his truck (CDL), but not while working afterwards for Uber.
Here’s another Reed earnings/timecard from May, showing that he worked nearly 70 hours just driving for Lyft, and does not include any Uber driving hours:
During last week’s CMA Fest & other downtown madness, drivers were not only working crazy hours, but making great money. Rhodes-Ogle worked 26 hours in 2.5 days – for a $491 payout; but she also drove only 4 hours sleep after a cross-country trip from Seattle to Nashville.
Another pay report from Reed, driving nearly 12 hours just one one of the ride-share platforms, to make nearly $200.
Here, drivers discuss their hours and Theresa Steward, who goes by ‘Star Williams’ on social media, admits that she’s been driving for hours, is going to take a nap at nearly 5AM so she can be back at it for the day at 9AM – on less than 4 hours of sleep. Chris Patton works past 11 hours to try to make his daily goal:
So how many hours are too many to be driving a passenger for Lyft or Uber? NYC recently got together with Uber, who agreed to ‘attempt’ to limit driver’s hours to 12 consecutive hours:
Without pressure from the city or state, regulations such as this won’t be coming to Tennessee any time soon. Have you experienced a tired or sleepy Uber/Lyft driver? Let us know! firstname.lastname@example.org or Contact Us here.