Sarah Milburn, a 24-year-old woman suffering from quadriplegia, recently filed a lawsuit against the ridesharing service company Uber and the car manufacturer Honda.
Back in November of 2015, Milburn called an Uber after a night of club hopping with some friends.
“I really believed it was safe,” she said. “You call an Uber if you're drinking. That's the safe option.”
Milburn and her five other friends were picked up by a 2011 Honda Odyssey minivan. She climbed into the back row of the vehicle, buckled her seatbelt and set off towards their next destination.
“I never gave any thought to the quality or caliber of individual who was driving that car," she said. "I just put my faith in the company and the belief that it was safe because they kind of market themselves that way.”
Unfortunately, Milburn’s driver chose to drive through a red light at the intersection of Fitzhugh and McKinney in Uptown. He was struck by a pickup truck that had the green light, causing the van to roll over twice before coming to rest upside down.
“I remember being upside down hanging with the seatbelt and looking at the roof," said Milburn. "We were upside down and I couldn't move.”
Milburn, now paralyzed due to the injuries she suffered during the crash, can only move her arms and legs with the assistance of incredibly expensive and advanced technology. According to the lawsuit filed against the ridesharing company, the van that picked her and her friends up was uninsured, and owned by someone other than the driver behind the wheel. On top of that, the driver has been arrested multiple times on drug charges and running a gambling den.
“This is a billion-dollar company, billions and they are making all this money advertising they are the safe drivers," commented Charla Aldous of Aldous \ Walker, Milburn’s attorney. "And yet our children are getting in the car with drivers that have not even been basically screened for criminal backgrounds.”
During an interview with ABC World News Tonight, Aldous expanded on the dangers Milburn and her friends faced.
“They should have not allowed them to drive under Uber’s name because passengers who get in those cars assume they’re safe, and they’re not.”
The lawsuit named both the driver of the Uber as well as the actual owner of the vehicle as defendants, as well as Honda Motor Company, claiming that Milburn was not restrained safely in the crash.