Convenience is very important to US shoppers. Over the past few years, there has been a massive increase in online sales, which means more delivery trucks on the roadways. More delivery trucks lead to more delivery truck accidents. When a large work vehicle hits a smaller personal vehicle, the injuries can be serious – even life-threatening. In today’s blog, we’re discussing the legal complications surrounding delivery truck accidents.
Delivery Truck Statistics
Each year, UPS delivers about 5 billion packages, closely followed by FedEx with 3.4 billion. Amazon averages about 2.5 billion packages a year. Consumers are demanding faster and easier deliveries, which does come at a cost. Delivery truck drivers, who are already in high demand, are under extreme pressure to make thousands of on-time deliveries every day. Their trucks are causing congestion on the road and endangering other drivers.
What Makes Delivery Trucks Unique?
Delivery trucks are different than personal vehicles or other work trucks. They’re larger, heavier, and more difficult to maneuver. The trucks also have large blind spots. Large vehicles cause more force in a collision, leading to serious or even catastrophic injuries. Delivery truck drivers are working under the pressure of tight deadlines and may not be adequately trained to handle the oversized vehicle. Additionally, because delivery trucks are constantly in use, the trucks may not be properly maintained.
What are the Common Causes of Delivery Truck Accidents?
Delivery truck drivers are under pressure to make as many deliveries as possible, as quickly as possible. As such, drivers may be more likely to take risks and drive irresponsibly in traffic. Some of the common causes of delivery truck accidents include:
- Turning Too Quickly
- Ignoring the Right-of-Way
- Distracted Driving
- Drowsy Driving
- Merging without Checking Blind Spots
- Blocking Lanes of Traffic
While a delivery truck driver is driving aggressively, for fear of losing their job, their actions can cause an accident. They may hit a nearby vehicle, leaving that driver to deal with the repercussions of the delivery truck driver’s and the company’s actions.
Injuries Associated with Delivery Truck Accidents
When a delivery truck is loaded with packages, it can weigh as much as 20,000 pounds. That’s compared to a passenger vehicle, which has an average weight of 4,000 pounds. When a collision occurs, it’s common to see injuries such as:
- Broken Bones
- Severe Lacerations
- Internal Bleeding
- Organ Damage
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- Traumatic Brain Injuries
Many delivery truck accident victims face major medical bills and months (or even years) of recovery. They may not be able to work while they recover, causing financial hardship to their family.
Who is Liable in a Delivery Truck Accident?
Filing a personal injury claim after an accident with a delivery truck can be complicated. You have multiple parties involved – the delivery driver, the company that owns the delivery truck, and their insurer. Typically, the company that owns the delivery trucks is responsible for the actions of their drivers. If a delivery driver hits another vehicle while they are on the job, the delivery company will likely be liable for the other driver’s injuries. Companies like Amazon, FedEx, and UPS are legally responsible for their employees’ behavior and negligence during the scope of their employment. These companies all have policies that address how to handle delivery truck accidents. If the company’s actions encouraged driver negligence (ex: the company pushes the drivers to speed or drive aggressively), then the case against the company is even stronger.
With the rise of online delivery apps, there are many new delivery services appearing throughout Metro Atlanta. Many of these drivers are classified as independent contractors and not employees. It can be more difficult to determine who is liable for the accident and whether the delivery company’s insurance will cover the delivery driver. An experienced delivery truck accident attorney can help you determine who is responsible for the accident and what parties to name in a personal injury case.
Dealing with the At-Fault Party’s Insurance
If you or a loved one is injured in an accident involving a delivery truck, you may be entitled to damages, including medical expenses, pain and suffering, mental anguish, lost wages, or property damage. The delivery company’s insurer may try to downplay your injuries or offer you less than your damages are worth. An experienced attorney can help investigate the accident, determine liability, and advocate for the compensation that you deserve. They can communicate and negotiate with the insurance company while you focus on your recovery.
Have Additional Questions? Contact Burrow & Associates
Delivery truck accidents are more complicated than other accidents. The large delivery trucks can potentially cause severe or even fatal injuries. When it comes time to file your case, there can be multiple parties involved. It can be difficult to seek a settlement and receive the compensation you deserve. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident involving a delivery truck, please reach out to our team of experienced personal injury attorneys. We can walk you through the best legal options for you and your family. To schedule a consultation, call (678) 323-2394 or use our online contact form. Burrow & Associates has convenient office locations in Athens, Conyers, Duluth, Gainesville, Kennesaw, and Morrow.