With the enormous increase in e-commerce over the past decade, the number of package deliveries have skyrocketed too. Global parcel delivery exceeded 131 billion pieces in 2020, a 27% increase from the year before. In the United States, parcel volume increased 37% to more than 20 billion pieces. These numbers only increased in 2021.
The average person now receives over 60 packages every year. These packages are delivered by huge package delivery companies, such as Amazon, UPS, Fed Ex, DHL, USPS and other smaller delivery services. FedEx is still the industry leader, but Amazon is gaining fast and is soon set to become the biggest package delivery company in the country.
With the huge increase in shopping from online shopping due to the Covid-19 pandemic, these companies have hired tens of thousands of drivers and added thousands of vehicles to their fleet. Many of these drivers have no previous commercial driving experience and are provided little training. Companies are so desperate for drivers many fail to conduct safety background checks or criminal checks on drivers.
This has led to an increase in the number of accidents involving package delivery vans and trucks. Many of these accidents lead to severe personal injuries caused by the negligence of a distracted or speeding driver.
An experienced truck delivery accident attorney can help you recover the compensation you deserve following a crash with an Amazon van or Fed Ex delivery truck. This includes the payment of outstanding medical bills, future medical expenses, lost wages, as well as pain and suffering.
Who Must Pay for Injuries Caused by a Delivery Person?
There are different defendants an injured person can sue for causing an accident while delivering packages. First, the negligent driver is responsible and is a proper defendant. Under the law, a negligent driver is responsible for the injuries and losses they cause. Second, the company the driver works for can be held responsible. This occurs under a principle known as respondent superior, which holds that an employer or company is responsible for the negligent acts of their employees and agents.
In addition, the owner of the delivery truck or van can be liable for the injuries caused. Under the Michigan Owners’ Liability statute, the owner of a motor vehicle is strictly liable for the injuries caused by the driver.
What are the Main Causes of Delivery Truck Accidents?
Delivery truck drivers are now sometimes dropping off dozens of packages a day to homes and businesses. They have a strict schedule and are expected to make their deliveries within a certain time frame. This can lead to drivers who make bad choices while driving. Common causes of delivery truck accidents include:
- Driving while distracted
- Looking at cell phones or smart phone devices while driving
- Running a red light
- Making an illegal turn
- Disregarding a yield or stop sign
- Improper turns
- Fatigue or driving while tired
- Drinking and driving
- Driving too fast for the road conditions
- Wrong way accidents
Sometimes, the delivery vans and trucks are not maintained properly or loaded in an unsafe manner. Vehicles that are not loaded properly can flip when the cargo is not secured. This can lead to tragic and catastrophic injuries for operator of the delivery trucks as well as innocent drivers and pedestrians.
Amazon Last Mile Delivery
Amazon now makes an incredible number of deliveries from their warehouses all over Michigan. The last part of the logistics chain where a package is delivered to the office or home is called “last mile delivery.”
Amazon uses a technology called Netradyne that includes 4 HD cameras. These cameras record the road and helps activate safety features if the driver does something wrong while driving. This system is called DriverI. The DriverI system will record video but doesn’t record the audio of a driver. It will upload video footage and warn a driver if he or she fails to follow safety rules, like running a red light or speeding.
Amazon and its Delivery Service Partners (DSP) also monitor driver safety through an app called Mentor. Amazon drivers are required to login to the Mentor app each day and calculates a safety score for the driver. The scores are then compared to other drivers. These devices are also known as rabbits.
Having a law firm that knows how Amazon operates is integral in getting the money and compensation you deserve following a truck crash. Let our Amazon truck crash attorneys help you.
What are Common Injuries from Delivery Truck Accidents?
The injuries caused by truck accidents can vary widely. Some impacts are very minor and result in a neck strain or a pulled back muscle that resolves in a few days. However, sometimes the injuries are much more severe and long lasting. These injuries can result in missed time from work, doctor bills, emergency medical bills, physical therapy, rehabilitation and even surgery.
The types of injuries caused by delivery trucks include:
- Low back pain and lumbar radiculopathy
- Neck pain and cervical radiculopathy
- Disc herniation
- Muscle spasms and sciatic nerve pain
- Broken bones, such as a fractured leg, arm or elbow
- Torn ligaments in the knee, shoulder or ankle
- Torn tendons
- Closed head injury
- Traumatic brain injury resulting in memory loss, dizziness and blurred vision
Who Pays for My Medical Bills and Lost Wages After a Delivery Truck Accident?
If an Amazon driver or Fed Ex truck operator causes an accident while making a delivery, the payment of medical bills and lost wages may not be their responsibility. Instead, under the Michigan no-fault law, your own auto insurance must pay all medical bills up to the PIP (personal injury protection) coverage limit. Your own auto insurance will also be responsible for paying lost wages for up 3 years.
If you don’t have auto insurance, then another insurance company will be responsible. However, only when all the PIP coverage is used up is the at-fault vehicle’s insurance company liable for the payment of medical bills and wages.
What are the Attorney Fees or Costs to Hire a Delivery Truck Lawyer?
At the Lee Steinberg Law Firm, we never charge a fee until we settle your case. This means there are no upfront charges and retainer fees. It’s very simple. We don’t get paid until you get paid.
How Much Time Do You Have To File A Lawsuit?
There is a certain amount of time to file a lawsuit against a truck company or delivery package company for negligent driving. This is called the statute of limitations. Under Michigan law, the statute of limitations for pain and suffering is three (3) years from the date of the accident.
However, against certain defendants there are different rules. For examples, cases against the United State Postal Service (USPS) are covered under the Federal Torts Claims Act. The FTCA governs when, how and where a negligence claim against the postal service can proceed. This includes demonstrating that (1) he was injured or his property was damaged by a federal government employee; (2) the employee was acting within the scope of his official duties; (3) the employee was acting negligently or wrongfully; and (4) the negligent or wrongful act proximately caused the injury or damage of which he complains.
As part of the FTCA, an injured person must file a Standard Form 95 with the federal government. The government requires a Form 95 be filed within 2 years of the crash to establish the claim. This Form asks for basic personal information, the basis of the claim including injuries, the name and addresses of witnesses, as well as an exact amount claimed. This “sum certain amount” for the injury is not usually required, but it is required under the FTCA. The federal government then has 6 months to respond.
Michigan Delivery Truck Accident Lawyers
The experienced and knowledgeable Michigan delivery truck accident lawyers at the Lee Steinberg Law Firm specialize in truck accident and delivery crash lawsuits. Our team of dedicated attorneys and legal professionals are ready to help. We can start our investigation immediately and will hold people accountable. Call us at 1-800-LEE-FREE (1-800-533-3733).