Delivery trucks, often hired by large online companies, are a common sight in most Texas neighborhoods. With more delivery trucks on the road, there are more accidents.
These large online companies frequently hire independent contractors to do many of its deliveries and try to shield itself from liability when a driver causes a crash. But some believe that their dispatch provides step-by-step instructions to delivery drivers, suggesting that they may have more involvement with independently contracted drivers than they publicly admit. This could call into question the employer's claim of no liability when these drivers crash.
It’s not clear how many accidents are caused by these trucks. According to a recent article in The New York Times, from June 2015 to September 2019, there were at least 60 independent contractors involved in crashes that resulted in serious injuries. Many experts believe that this number is just the tip of the iceberg because lawsuits are not pursued.
Why Delivery Truck Accidents Happen
Delivery truck crashes happen for a variety of reasons, including inclement weather, human error, and mechanical failures. Delivery trucks are bigger and heavier than most passenger vehicles, making them difficult for drivers to maneuver safely. They also create significant blind spots for drivers. When these trucks hit another vehicle, bicycle, or pedestrian, the injuries that result are often severe.
As demand for delivery services surges, many drivers are overworked and under pressure to complete their routes as quickly as possible. Other reasons for accidents include:
- Inexperienced drivers who have not received adequate training
- Distracted driving, particularly among drivers who are in unfamiliar neighborhoods and focused on GPS devices instead of the road
- Driver negligence, such as parking illegally, failing to yield the right of way, running stop signs, or speeding
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Delivery vehicles that are not well maintained
- Poor hiring and training policies on the part of delivery companies
What to Do If You Are in a Crash
As with any vehicle crash, it’s crucial to gather pertinent information. This includes:
- Take photographs or videos of the scene of the accident
- Take photographs of any visible injuries and property damage
- Gather insurance information of all drivers involved in the accident, including the delivery truck driver
- Collect contact information from any eyewitnesses
- Contact the police to file an accident report
- Seek medical attention—even if your injuries seem minor
Because of the situation with a large company hiring independent contractors to avoid liability, it’s more important than ever that you contact an attorney to help you stand up for your rights. A personal injury attorney can also help gather needed evidence to help support your claim.
Types of Compensation You Could Recover
If you were in an accident involving an at-fault delivery truck driver, you could file a lawsuit with the assistance of a personal injury attorney who will fight for your right to recover damages. How much and the type of compensation you could receive will depend on the seriousness of your injuries and the specifics of your claim.
In general, accident victims who are hit and injured by a negligent driver are eligible for compensation that includes:
- Medical treatment expenses
- Property damage
- Lost wages
- Loss of future income if your injuries will impact your ability to work in the future
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium
If a negligent delivery truck driver caused an accident that injured you, you should pursue a personal injury lawsuit against that driver. At The Button Law Firm, we work on a contingency basis, so you do not have to pay an upfront retainer. We don’t get paid until you recover damages. Call today to make an appointment for a free consultation so we can go over the details of your case.
We also invite you to download our book, which explains personal injuries in Texas more in detail: The Essential Guide for Your Texas Injury Case.