Every day, tens of thousands of Dashers complete deliveries that help connect and empower local communities across Australia. Since launching in Melbourne in 2019, DoorDash now operates in all states and territories servicing 30,000 local businesses and reaching over 80 percent of the Australian population.
From the very beginning, safety has been a critical priority for DoorDash in Australia, and we’re constantly working to help keep Dashers even safer before, during and after every dash. All Australian Dashers are covered by personal accident insurance for free and with no opt-in required. Australian Dashers also have access to free and discounted safety equipment, including bicycle-friendly phone cradles to reduce risk of distractions and reflective armbands to increase visibility at night. Our best-practice safety content helps Dashers know what to expect on the road during signup, and we regularly remind them of those best practices before they dash. Dashers also have constant access to safety tips directly in the Dasher app. Additionally, DoorDash regularly runs informational safety events for bike-based Dashers, where they can get even more safety tips and receive free bike safety checks from our e-bike partner Zoomo.
Importantly, we have also strongly advocated for initiatives to raise the bar for safety across all food delivery platforms in Australia. We're a proud signatory of the first-ever National Safety Principles for Food Delivery Platforms, which outlines the safety standards and practices platforms must meet. DoorDash was also the first food delivery platform to sign a joint Statement of Principles with the Transport Workers’ Union, which aims to promote safety and fairness for workers in the evolving on-demand platform economy.
Today, we’re pleased to share an update on our recent efforts to help make dashing in Australia even safer. Since November 2022 alone, we’ve launched more than seven new safety features or measures in Australia.
Real-Time Safety Alerts
We’ve partnered with Samdesk, a global crisis detection platform, to roll out Real-Time Safety Alerts in Australia and help keep Dashers out of harm’s way. In the event of an emergency, we can quickly alert Dashers, customers and merchants about the incident, suspend operations near the impacted area and cancel any active deliveries. Since launching, we’ve responded to hundreds of separate external events including evacuations and fires in Australia.
To give Dashers even greater peace of mind while out on the road, we have introduced in-app Location Sharing. Australian Dashers can now share their location with up to 5 trusted contacts. Those contacts can track their loved ones in real-time: they’ll see if they’re on a dash or if the dash has ended.
We developed and launched SafeChat to help promote a safe and respectful environment on our platform. If SafeChat detects inappropriate or offensive language in a chat on our app, the person who sent the message will receive a warning and the person who received the message will automatically be given the option to report the issue. SafeChat has already proven to be effective at reducing inappropriate and offensive chats.
We have made it faster and easier than ever for Dashers to report a safety incident in the rare event something happens during or after a delivery. If a customer ever makes a Dasher feel unsafe, they can immediately report it via in-app chat or request an investigation. Dashers are also able to block any future deliveries to that customer.
Outside Light Reminders
To make dashing at night even easier and help Dashers feel safer, we rolled out Outside Light Reminders. When a Dasher is approaching the delivery address, we will message the customer asking them to turn on their porch or house lights.
Reducing Notifications While Driving
To help Dashers stay safe and focused while out on the road, we have rolled out changes to reduce the number of in-app notifications Dashers may receive while dashing. Now Dashers will only receive select, time-sensitive notifications such as a change to the delivery address, messages from the customer or if an order has been reassigned after being timed out. Other notifications will be delayed until the Dasher indicates in the app that they’re no longer moving.
Encouraging Customers to Message Safely
We have also made changes to encourage consumers to refrain from contacting their Dasher via in-app chat when the Dasher is driving. When a consumer sends a message to their Dasher while the Dasher is driving, they are notified that the Dasher may be on the road. The notification encourages consumers to reconsider if they need to message and manage expectations that they may not receive an immediate response. reduce customers in-app messaging to Dashers while they are driving.
Importantly, we know there will always be more work to do to make dashing even safer and we look forward to sharing more updates on our progress.