Hsinchu County police were yesterday investigating a brawl in Jhubei City (竹北市), involving two food delivery drivers over a dispute with a security guard.
The incident allegedly started on Wednesday afternoon, when an Uber Eats driver, surnamed Hsu (徐), got into an argument with a security guard, surnamed Liu (劉), while delivering to a residential building, a police official said.
“Initial information indicated that the Uber Eats driver did not have detailed address information for a customer in the building who ordered the meal, so the security guard could not pass on the order. The Uber Eats driver then became angry and threatened to throw the meal at the building’s entrance, and they started to argue, leading to an altercation,” said Hu Tsung-wei (胡淙惟), head of Jhubei’s Lioujia District (六家) police station.
Photo: Tsai Ya-hsuan, Taipei Times
“Hsu then used a messaging app to contact two friends, one of whom is a delivery driver for Foodpanda. When they arrived to help their friend, it further escalated into a brawl,” Hu said.
The three men face assault charges, Hu added.
Video from surveillance cameras showed the two drivers, wearing jackets with the logos of Uber Eats and Foodpanda, grabbing and punching Liu, who fell to the ground.
Liu reportedly was knocked unconscious and suffered head injuries and was treated at a hospital, police said.
Police said that a woman told them that she had ordered the meal, but was not at the building at the time of the incident.
She provided police with a record of her order, which she said included clear information on her address and instructions to leave it at the door, police said.
She said that they had written down the address incorrectly, police said.
“But this is no reason to beat someone up and send them to the hospital with serious injuries. It was bad behavior and the delivery driver needs better training,” the police quoted her as saying.
Jhubei City Councilor Tsai Ya-hsuan (蔡蕥鍹) said she visited Liu in the hospital after learning about the incident.
“There are many people who have recently moved to Jhubei, and food delivery companies are enjoying good business, but we see their delivery drivers making dangerous runs, weaving through traffic, leading to some serious accidents,” Tsai said.
“The police worked swiftly to take the three offenders in for questioning. We hope the food delivery companies can better manage and restrain their workers, so violent incidents, which have scared residents, will not happen again,” she added.
Uber Eats said in a statement that it regretted the incident.
“Violence in any form will result in people losing their right to work with our platform. We are trying to find out details of what happened, and will fully cooperate with the police,” it said. “During this time, we have suspended the driver’s right to work on our platform, along with the business with which he had signed up to work with us.”
Foodpanda also issued a statement.
“Regarding the fighting incident in Hsinchu, if this contractor is determined to have been an offender, we will terminate our agreement with him. We urge all delivery personnel to exercise self-restraint and not engage in violent behavior,” it said.
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