On Wednesday, 04 April 2018, taxi-hailing app Taxify announced the launch of a driver safety feature at the Taxify Driver Summit which took place at Turbine Hall in Johannesburg, South Africa. The in-app driver safety feature which connects drivers to emergency services is in partnership with Namola, an emergency assistance app.
Gareth Taylor, Country Manager for Taxify said, “The safety button will allow Taxify drivers to access rapid deployment of the correct emergency response, should they find themselves in danger.”
Speaking about the partnership with Namola, Taylor said, “Namola are the leaders in community safety, we have a huge sense of relief in rolling out this partnership.”
Taylor addressed some of the safety concerns that drivers have raised, he said, “we’ve heard you and want to encourage you to continue to raise these issues with us.”
“Namola is a leader in this field and is backed by DailDirect. It was important for us to find a technology partner such as Namola which is an app that you download and at a push of a button you request emergency service like South African Police Service (SAPS), that same functionality is what will be embedded in our app for you as drivers”, said Taylor.
Namola allows users to share their GPS coordinates, name and nature of the emergency with a 24/7 response call centre, which can verify incident details and connect to emergency medical services and SAPS. The partnership will enable Taxify drivers to access the Namola functionality from within the Taxify app.
Taylor says that Taxify has been working with the provincial and national government to try end violence. He says the company is also working closely with SAPS.
“Namola exists to help improve safety and security in South Africa. We are a community focused application that aims to get citizens the fastest help possible in any emergency,” says Namola’s CEO Peter Matthaei. “The partnership with Taxify will help alleviate some of the distressing situations that drivers can face. The app is available to all South Africans and has been found to be particularly useful in volatile areas.”
Partnership, app development and education are the three ways that Taxify aims to improve driver safety.
There were a number of training stations set up at the event, which dealt with topics such as anti-hijacking, self-defence and vehicle maintenance safety. Issues of safety, crime hot spots and mitigating risk with cash paying clients formed part of the day’s agenda.
“The welfare of our drivers is our foremost priority, the partnership with Namola is the first very important step towards addressing safety concerns. Taxify has a zero-tolerance approach to violence,” Taylor said. “Beyond providing a platform to speak out on safety concerns and issues, the Taxify Safety Summit has created an opportunity for us to find actionable solutions together with drivers”, concluded Taylor.