From groceries to gifts to furniture and appliances, delivery trucks do the heavy lifting for Olive Branch shoppers, bringing products directly to their doors. This convenience is not without a cost, however, as incidents of delivery truck accidents rise along with delivery demands.
Whether you are in an accident with a delivery van, known as a “light truck,” or with a larger delivery truck, the outcome will probably include severe physical and emotional damage and significant financial loss. To recover these losses, secure representation from an Olive Branch delivery personal injury lawyer from Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu, & Montesi PLC.
More Deliveries Bring More Trucks
For its most recent full year of data collection, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) reported the registered number of large trucks on the road as 12.5 million.
Since then, e-commerce has continued to grow, giving customers more opportunities to have products both large and small delivered to their homes.
Light trucks, such as those operated by Amazon, FedEx, or United Parcel Service (UPS) delivery drivers, have become a common sight in residential areas. Through its Delivery Service Partner (DSP), the number of Amazon drivers has grown to 275,000. FedEx has 87,000 trucks supporting its express (air) service and 100,000 vehicles supporting ground operations.
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Where Delivery Truck Accidents Occur
Delivery truck accidents can, and have, occurred on any roads delivery trucks travel on. These roads include interstates, county roads, residential streets, rural roads, and office parks. A recent investigation by ProPublica reported 60 accidents involving Amazon delivery trucks in recent years. Surviving victims sustained serious injuries, and 10 victims were killed.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) records a nationwide total of 4,965 fatalities and 146,930 injuries from accidents involving large trucks and shows over 439,000 large trucks were involved in accidents for the last full year of data collection.
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Why Delivery Truck Accidents in Olive Branch Happen
Whether driving big rigs or light trucks, delivery drivers share common pressures and practices.
Operate Under Tight Delivery Schedules
Retailers, especially online outfits such as Amazon, are committed to providing speedy product delivery to their customers and to serving as many customers as possible. This commitment, however, puts pressure on drivers, sometimes prompting them to drive too fast, run red lights, or make other unsafe driving decisions.
Drive in Inclement Weather
Drivers must keep to their tight schedules whether conditions are fair or stormy. Ice and rain bring increased risk of accidents even for careful drivers. For those under the gun to get a job done, those conditions become more deadly.
Travel on Highways and Interstates
Semi-trucks with full trailers can weigh up to 80,000 pounds. Even light trucks, with capacities of up to 26,000 pounds, are far heavier than passenger cars. When traveling at moderate or high speeds, these heavy vehicles are more difficult to control and stop, and should they collide with another vehicle, they cause devastating outcomes.
Travel Through Residential Areas
When driving through residential areas, delivery trucks share roads with passenger cars, cyclists, and pedestrians. Even traveling at slower speeds, these weighty vehicles pose serious risks upon impact. Truck drivers also have reduced visibility, especially when backing up, increasing the probability of neighborhood tragedies.
Double-Park Their Vehicles
To make quick deliveries, drivers double-park their vehicles, creating road obstructions for other drivers. Often, these parking decisions are made quickly and may not leave enough time for other drivers to stop before hitting the truck or may prompt the other driver to unsafely swerve out of the lane.
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Injuries Sustained in Olive Branch Truck Accidents
Passenger car occupants are at a loss when in an accident with a delivery truck, and cyclists and pedestrians are completely unprotected. Injuries sustained by victims often include:
- Broken bones
- Severe lacerations or amputations
- Back and neck injuries
- Spinal cord damage
- Head trauma
- Internal bleeding
These injuries do not just bring physical pain – they can bring life-changing consequences, including diminished quality of life, continuing emotional trauma, and substantial financial distress. Victims may no longer be able to maintain employment, care for themselves independently, or carry out their daily lives and activities as they once did. An Olive Branch delivery truck accident attorney from Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu, & Montesi PLC will fight to get victims financial compensation to recover some of these losses.
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A Delivery Truck Accident Lawyer in Olive Branch Will Help Hold At-Fault Parties Accountable
If you have been in a delivery truck-involved accident, you will need an experienced delivery truck accident attorney in Olive Branch to help you determine and file against the appropriate at-fault party.
Delivery trucks may be driven by the delivery company or retailer’s employees. They may also be driven by independent contractors, a situation that complicates your case and requires legal expertise to navigate.
Determining Legal Culpability
Many of Amazon’s drivers are not direct Amazon employees. Rather, Amazon outsources delivery drivers as DSPs. Amazon holds some control over these drivers, but the drivers’ independent contractor status or employment status with a smaller delivery operation allows Amazon to deny culpability should the driver be in an accident while on duty.
The ProPublica report highlights the legal complications arising from accidents involving delivery drivers operating as independent contractors, stating, “The question of where companies draw the line is a contentious one that has spurred litigation and legislation. FedEx has settled lawsuits in recent years brought by drivers who argued that they functioned as employees, not independent contractors.”
Do not try to handle a legal fight against these companies on your own. Trust your delivery truck accident attorney in Olive Branch to make the arguments and hold the right at-fault party accountable.
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Working through the aftermath of a delivery truck accident is hard, but an Olive Branch delivery truck accident lawyer from Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu, & Montesi PLC can make your recovery easier. Call or message us today for a free consultation. Your lawyer will fight hard and protect your interests and will not take any payment until the at-fault party delivers a just settlement.