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Uber reaches deal with NY attorney general to cap surge pricing during snowstorm

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The snowstorm that’s going by the moniker “Winter Storm Jonas” is going strong in the northeast U.S. this morning, which means residents are facing limited travel options. In New York City, where more than a foot of snow could accumulate when all is said and done, Uber is making things slightly easier by capping surge pricing from Saturday 8 a.m. EST until Mayor Bill de Blasio declares the end of the city’s snow emergency.

New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced the agreement between Uber and his office on his Twitter account:

Uber will cap surge pricing for its cheaper UberX service at 3.5 times the normal rate. Surge pricing for the higher-end Uber Black service will be capped at 2.8 times the normal rate, according to the New York Daily News.

Surge pricing kicks in for Uber rates “when demand cannot be met by the number of drivers on the road,” according to the company’s help page.

The state attorney general’s office reached a deal with Uber in 2014 to limit surge pricing during times of emergency, which led to Uber rolling that policy out in all its U.S. markets. The current snow emergency is only for New York City, but Uber agreed to cap surge pricing there anyway.

Last week, Uber won a victory in New York City when the New York City Council announced that the company would not face regulations or limits on its surge pricing. The decision may be galling to riders who paid exceedingly high surge rates on New Year’s Eve.

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Jason Hahn
Jason Hahn is a part-time freelance writer based in New Jersey. He earned his master's degree in journalism at Northwestern…
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