RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Ride-sharing apps are so popular now, many people get into an Uber or Lyft without a second thought.
A 21-year-old South Carolina college student is dead after she got into a car she mistook for her Uber.
“She called the Uber, had the black car license plate, the name,” said Seymour Josephson, the victim, Samantha Joseph’s father. “She saw another black car pull up so she jumped up into it. She was by herself.”
Student Samantha Josephson was coming home after a night at the bars near her university. Her father wants to remind other students how important it is to travel together.
“Samantha was by herself,” her father said. “She had absolutely no chance. None. The door was locked, her child safety lock was on. She had absolutely no chance. If there’s somebody else in the car, there’s actually a chance.”
CBS 17 spoke with N.C. State students who say they take Uber home after drinking all the time.
“I know a lot of girls that will get into their Uber’s late at night alone and I just feel like you need other people with you at all times,” said Holly Phelps, a junior at NC State.
“It’s just so sad and it’s sad to know it could happen to literally anyone even on this campus,” said Hailey Easthom, a junior.
Before getting into an Uber or Lyft riders need to make sure important details match what was ordered.
All of the apps will give the driver’s name, a photo, the model and make of their car and their license plate.
CBS 17 asked students if they check for all of these things before getting into a car.
“I check the name and then like the car but not really the license plate,” said Easthom.
“Normally, I don’t, actually but with this other stuff happening and all these stories that you’re hearing, I’ll definitely be more aware,” said Phelps.
Uber has not released an official statement on this incident, but they did direct CBS 17 to a blog post they put up in 2017.
Uber says if any of these details — the license plate or driver — don’t match up, do not get into the car.