Have you been injured or have you lost a loved one in a delivery truck accident in Ohio involving a FedEx, USPS, UPS, or Amazon Prime vehicle? Victims of delivery truck accidents may be entitled to substantial compensation for their injuries, including:
- Medical care expenses;
- Rehabilitation and physical therapy;
- Lost earnings; and
- Pain and suffering.
Recovering fair compensation after an accident involving a delivery truck may be much more complicated than a car accident with another passenger vehicle. The major transportation companies have experienced legal counsel and virtually unlimited resources to defend personal injury claims. They may even go so far as to blame you for your injuries.
After an accident, a skilled and experienced Ohio delivery truck accident attorney at GBM can help you protect your legal rights and fight for the maximum financial compensation you deserve. Under our contingency fee agreement, if we represent you, we will not charge any legal fees unless we recover money for you.
More Delivery Trucks on the Road than Ever Before
The lockdowns and quarantines arising from the COVID-19 pandemic led to a surge in online shopping in 2020. Amazon reported a nearly 200 percent rise in profits as many people transitioned to online shopping for everyday purchases. With an increase in demand, there has also been a sharp increase in the number of delivery trucks and vehicles on the road.
It is nearly impossible to obtain accurate data on Amazon delivery vehicle accidents. Amazon’s organizational structure of fleet vehicles, flex drivers, delivery service partners (DSPs), and contract vehicles makes it difficult to accurately estimate the number of vehicles on the road, and the number of accidents. However, we do hear about accidents and incidents involving delivery trucks:
- May 2020 — Newport News, Virginia: A 61-year-old woman was riding a bicycle when she was struck and killed by an Amazon truck.
- June 2020 — Cranbury Township, New Jersey: An Amazon Prime tractor trailer struck the rear of a Toyota Camry. Three people were injured, and a 1-year-old boy tragically died of his injuries at a nearby hospital.
- June 2020 — Volusia County, Florida: The driver of a disabled Honda Civic was killed when he was struck from behind by a tractor-trailer carrying Amazon packages.
- November 2020 — Salem, Ohio: The driver of an SUV was injured after being rear-ended by an Amazon van that reportedly failed to stop at a stop sign.
- November 2020 — Greenville, Ohio: Two drivers were injured in a collision when the driver of a Ford Transit Amazon delivery van made a left turn and reportedly failed to yield to oncoming traffic.
- March 2021 — Riverside, CA: An Amazon delivery truck slammed into a sheriff’s patrol vehicle that had responded to another accident. Two people died and two law enforcement personnel were injured.
In 2013, Amazon’s first chief financial officer was riding her bike when she was struck and killed by a vehicle delivering Amazon packages. Eventually, a $6.25 million settlement was reached by insurers for the carrier company, subcontractor, and driver. Sadly, this tragedy was not an isolated occurrence. Many of the settlements reached after delivery truck accidents are confidential, so just like statistics on the number of accidents, it is difficult to know how much logistics companies are paying out.
Amazon Flex Vehicle Accidents
Amazon relies on its own ridesharing service — called Amazon Flex — which hires “partner” drivers to deliver Amazon packages using their own vehicles. Drivers reserve a block of time, like 3 to 6 hours, and pick up packages from an Amazon delivery station and then deliver packages to customers’ homes and businesses in their own vehicles. If drivers do not deliver vehicles in the allotted time period, their relationship with Amazon as a Flex driver may be terminated, and future opportunities will not be available.
The Flex program allows Amazon to meet increased demand when it needs to, such as during peak holiday times or during Prime Day. It also saves them money, allowing them to use contract drivers instead of unionized drivers. If you are involved in an accident involving an Amazon flex vehicle, it may not be immediately obvious. The driver will be in their own vehicle. In Ohio, Amazon Flex operates in Akron, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, and Dayton.
Federal Safety Agency Looking at Delivery Truck Operations
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulates trucks used in interstate commerce (not local delivery trucks). Generally, FMCSA regulations do not apply to trucks that only operate in one state. However, we know the federal agency is taking a closer look at so-called “last mile” delivery trucks – those trucks that deliver to homes and businesses. FMCSA Associate Administrator for Policy Larry Minor acknowledged in 2020 that it was a revelation about how little the agency knew about what was going on. He went on to say, “even though we may not have any regulatory authority over [delivery trucks], there’s a safety conversation to be had.”
Trucking company FMCSA violations can be indicative of negligence which can lead to catastrophic truck accidents which can lead to serious injury or wrongful death. Operators can be cited for vehicle inspections, driver duty violations, and safety violations. Examples of safety violations operators have been cited for include:
- Speeding 6 to 10 miles per hour over the speed limit;
- Speeding 11 to 14 miles per hour over the speed limit;
- Speeding 15 or more miles per hour over the speed limit;
- Speeding work/construction zone;
- Following too close;
- Improper lane change;
- Improper passing;
- Inattentive driving;
- Failure to yield to right of way; and
- Using a hand-held mobile telephone while operating a commercial motor vehicle.
At GBM Law, our attorneys and network of experts are well-versed in FMCSA regulations, as well as state and local regulations. After any trucking accident, we work quickly to determine whether the truck driver, trucking company, or any other parties violated federal, state, or local regulations or vehicle codes.
Causes of Ohio Delivery Truck Accidents
Many delivery vehicle accidents result from the incredible pressure companies put on drivers to meet delivery deadlines. Because drivers’ compensation is based on the number and rates of completed deliveries, some drivers inevitably jeopardize safety in order to get more packages delivered faster. Some of the causes of delivery vehicle accidents include:
- Distraction from smartphone use while driving;
- Driver exhaustion/fatigue;
- Drivers rushed to complete all of their deliveries;
- Driving under the influence of drugs;
- Limited visibility as a result of piled packages in the windshield or mirror area;
- Reckless/unsafe driving and/or speeding; and
- Running stop signs or traffic signals.
In order to meet demand, Amazon has sought to offer solutions for urgent deliveries, offering next-day and same-day options, putting the threat of losing employment on drivers in order to meet deadlines and quotas. Beyond speeding and reckless driving have led to many accidents that have resulted in serious injuries and deaths.
Get a Free Consultation with an Ohio Delivery Truck Accident Lawyer
The Ohio personal injury lawyers at GBM Law have been fighting for the rights of accidents for more than 30 years. We have reached a number of positive outcomes in delivery truck accidents and are here to help you. If you have been injured or are dealing with the aftermath of a loved one’s accident, we are available to provide an immediate case evaluation and review of your legal rights and options. Contact us today to discuss your potential case.