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Transportation

Ride-Hailing Drivers Struggle With Crime and Gas Costs

Amid a spike in carjackings, a new bill in Chicago proposes boosting pay and improving working conditions for Uber and Lyft drivers.

Uber and Lyft drivers have been targeted in a recent surge in carjackings in many US cities.

Uber and Lyft drivers have been targeted in a recent surge in carjackings in many US cities.

Photograph: Lindsey Nicholson/Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

One February morning this year, Uber driver Abiodun Odebunmi picked up three passengers in downtown Chicago. One of the young men pointed a gun at him and demanded his car. “Please, I have three kids,” Odebunmi recalled begging the carjackers, who drove off in his Toyota minivan toward Lakeshore Drive.

For Odebunmi, who immigrated to Chicago from Lagos, Nigeria, in 2010, it was his second carjacking in less than a week.