UPDATE: Uber is offering free rides out of the Sydney CBD

UPDATE: Uber are now offering free rides in the Sydney CBD. They released the following statement after the time of this story’s initial publication. 

As the siege in Sydney’s Martin Place continues, and a number of Sydney workers find themselves being sent home for the day, social media has hit out at Uber in protest against the higher prices that the car service is currently charging in the city.
Mashable report that Uber cars are currently charging users in Sydney a minimum of $100 per ride, in line with the practice known as ‘surge pricing’. Per an explanation on their website, Uber use this practice in times of high demand: 
With surge pricing, Uber rates increase to get more cars on the road and ensure reliability during the busiest times. When enough cars are on the road, prices go back down to normal levels. It’s important to know that you’ll always be notified in big, bold print if surge pricing is in effect. When rates are more than double, the surge confirmation screen also requires you to type in the specific surge multiplier to ensure you understand what rates to expect.
Screenshots such as this one have been shared widely on social media, with Uber cars charging four times their normal price as “demand is off the charts!”

Uber Sydney have acknowledged the situation on their official Twitter account:

Their response, though, had angered many, who have slammed the company for its “tasteless” response to Sydney’s current crisis. All this said, it’s also unclear how many Uber drivers would want to be at work or anywhere near the city today.
This about sums the situation up:

Photo: Justin Sullivan via Getty Images