trumpet.jpg
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations

An Uber rider who got stuck in the Virginia traffic jam ended up with a $600 bill

Cars and trucks are stranded on sections of Interstate 95 Tuesday Jan. 4, 2022, near Quantico, Va. Close to 48 miles of the Interstate was closed due to ice and snow.
Steve Helber
/
AP
Cars and trucks are stranded on sections of Interstate 95 Tuesday Jan. 4, 2022, near Quantico, Va. Close to 48 miles of the Interstate was closed due to ice and snow.

A Virginia man has been refunded the $600 he was charged for an Uber ride after he became trapped in a miles-long traffic jam in Virginia that had some drivers stuck on the interstate for more than a day.

Andrew Peters, of Richmond, Va., was traveling from Dulles International Airport on Monday after a recent trip to San Francisco. He told WTOP-FM that he had no clue about what was happening in Virginia and how serious the winter weather was.

Peters' Uber driver also did not realize how terrible the traffic on I-95 was, eventually going on the highway and getting stuck in traffic, according to WTOP. Virginia State Police said several tractor-trailers jackknifed on the slippery interstate, making the road impassable — and causing a massive backup of drivers.

"It was kind of scary," Peters told WTOP. "We didn't have any food or water."

After being stranded on the highway for a total of nine hours, Peters finally made it home — paying a $200 bill for his trip. However, once he got home, Peters said the rideshare company charged him an additional $400, bringing his grand total from Dulles International Airport to Richmond to $600.

Peters said after multiple attempts, he disputed the additional charge with Uber. The rideshare company reached out to him on Wednesday apologizing for the incident.

This image provided by the Virginia department of Transportation shows a closed section of Interstate 95 near Fredericksburg, Va. Monday Jan. 3, 2022. Both northbound and southbound sections of the highway were closed due to snow and ice.
/ AP
/
AP
This image provided by the Virginia department of Transportation shows a closed section of Interstate 95 near Fredericksburg, Va. Monday Jan. 3, 2022. Both northbound and southbound sections of the highway were closed due to snow and ice.

"They were sorry to hear that I had ... so many problems with the app, and with the override, and with the highway and that they would love to issue me a full refund," Peters told WTOP.

In an email to NPR, Uber spokesperson Michelle Blackwell said that Peters was offered a refund following the "terrible ordeal."

"We appreciate his patience through this process and are so glad that he and his Uber driver got home safely," Blackwell said.

According to Uber's website, factors such as heavy traffic or bad weather may cause a passenger's trip to take longer than expected. To compensate a driver for the additional time caused, the company says the passenger's fare may increase.

Drivers were trapped in traffic for hours on the I-95 following the icy conditions and snow-covered roadways on Monday. The National Weather Service reported up to 11 inches of snow fell in the area during Monday's winter storm.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Jonathan Franklin is a digital reporter on the News desk covering general assignment and breaking national news.