A woman thought she was being kidnapped by her Lyft driver in San Francisco late Thursday night, and jumped out of the car at a stoplight and ran away, breaking her ankle in the process. But it turns out it was all just a misunderstanding—the driver is deaf, and didn't hear the woman's instructions to stop when she thought they were going in the wrong direction of her destination, SF Gate reports. Police believe that the driver was in fact, heading in the right direction, but was using a different route from what the woman expected.
The 28-year-old woman was picked up in Diamond Heights by a silver Nissan Quest on Thursday night around 11:20 p.m., said SFPD spokesman Albie Esparza. On Friday afternoon, Esparza said that officers reached the driver via TTY telephone, which is a special telephone for the deaf.
"He never heard her say anything," Esparza told KQED. "There was no criminal maliciousness. There was no criminal intent."
While thankfully, this was just a false alarm, it's not as if these fears about the safety of such ride sharing services are unfounded. As we reported a few weeks ago, our own Eve Batey wrote about her harrowing experience with an Uber driver who threatened to rape and kill her. In August, District Attorney offices in L.A. and San Francisco filed complaints about the sketchy lack of criminal background checks for drivers.