It’s more common than ever before to order things online. While getting things delivered right to your door is convenient, it means that there are more trucks on our roadways than ever before. Whether a driver works for Amazon, FedEx, UPS, DHL, or another company, having so many trucks on the road can lead to a significantly higher number of collisions.
Delivery truck accidents are often associated with serious injuries, particularly given the size difference between a passenger vehicle and a truck. If you have been hurt in a collision with a delivery van, truck, or other vehicle, you may be able to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver, the delivery company, and their insurance company. Through this type of personal injury claim, you can recover financial compensation for your property damage, medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.
At the Law Offices of Thomas L. Gallivan, we work hard to help our clients get the money that they deserve for their injuries. Our accident lawyers have significant experience handling all types of injury cases, including those that involve trucking companies, delivery truck drivers, and major insurers. Reach out today to schedule a free initial consultation with an experienced truck accident attorney.
Delivery Truck Accidents in New York
E-commerce is booming across the United States, including right here in New York. The desire to order things online – from meals and groceries to large appliances – has fueled a demand for delivery truck drivers. This includes drivers for large corporations like FedEx and UPS as well as independent contractors who deliver through platforms like LaserShip, Uber, Shipt, and Instacart.
While there is a lot to love about the ability to get whatever we want delivered right to our doors, it can create problems – particularly when it comes to traffic accidents. For example, in August 2023 alone, 574 large trucks, 80 small commercial vehicles, and 91 vans were involved in motor vehicle accidents in New York City.
There are many reasons why there are so many accidents involving delivery trucks in New York. First, many of these deliveries are being sent out on smaller trucks or vans instead of large rigs or semi trucks. Delivery drivers who operate these vehicles are generally not required to have a commercial driver’s license (CDL). This means that these delivery drivers generally have less training and are subject to fewer regulations than truck drivers who are operating commercial motor vehicles.
Second, delivery companies often send their trucks out on local routes, such as from a warehouse to homes and businesses. Instead of getting on a highway or turnpike and driving hundreds of miles in a day, these delivery truck drivers are spending most of their day parking, backing up, and otherwise navigating traffic. They may also rely more on GPS systems to find delivery addresses, which can take their attention away from the road.
Common causes of delivery truck accidents include:
- Distracted driving (including texting while driving or using GPS)
- Improper truck maintenance
- Driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs
- Careless driving
Because many delivery truck drivers are on a tight schedule – required to deliver a certain number of packages in a day and to make deliveries on time – they may be more likely than the average driver to engage in unsafe behaviors like speeding. This can increase the likelihood of a crash.
If you have been hurt in an accident with a FedEx, UPS, Amazon, or another type of delivery truck, you may be entitled to financial compensation for your losses. A semi-truck accident lawyer can work with you to help you understand your rights and get you the compensation that you deserve for your losses.
Can I File a Lawsuit for a Delivery Truck Crash?
After a delivery truck accident, your first priority should be making sure that you are OK. Seek medical attention as soon as possible. This way, you can get a proper diagnosis and the treatment that you need to fully recover from the crash.
Next, you should reach out to a White Plains delivery truck accident attorney for a free consultation. A lawyer will listen to your story and help you understand your legal rights and options for pursuing a legal claim. They can also protect you against underhanded tactics by the delivery company – like offering you a lowball settlement that doesn’t come close to covering your losses.
These cases are usually based on a theory of negligence or carelessness. Essentially, negligence is the failure to use the level of care that a reasonable person would use in a similar situation. A truck driver might be negligent in a number of ways, such as by running a stop sign, backing up without looking, or driving too fast for conditions.
If you can prove that the truck driver was negligent in some way, then you may be able to recover financial compensation for your losses. Under a legal doctrine known as respondeat superior, the truck driver’s employer – such as UPS – could be held liable for the actions of their employee.
Typically, a claim begins by sending a demand letter to the at-fault party’s insurance company. A demand letter sets out the facts of the case, explains why their insured is legally responsible, and then makes a demand for financial compensation (damages). In a personal injury case, damages may include money for:
- Property damages
- Lost wages
- Reduced earning capacity
- Medical expenses
- Future medical treatment
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of enjoyment of life
If the driver or their employer acted intentionally or recklessly, then you may also be entitled to punitive damages. For example, if a trucking company hired a driver without a CDL to operate a commercial vehicle, and that driver caused a crash, then their recklessness could lead to an award of punitive damages.
Typically, insurance companies will respond to demand letters with a counteroffer, and the parties will go back and forth to negotiate an agreement. If the insurance company refuses to offer a fair settlement, it may be necessary to file a lawsuit to get the compensation that you are entitled to under the law.
Hurt in a New York Delivery Truck Accident? Our Law Firm Can Help.
After a crash involving a delivery truck, you may be traumatized and unsure of what to do next. In this situation, you may even feel intimidated at the thought of taking on a major corporation. If you were hurt in a collision with an Amazon truck, FedEx truck, UPS truck, or another delivery truck, our law firm is here for you.
Based in White Plains, the Law Offices of Thomas L. Gallivan advocate for injury victims throughout New York. We have broad experience with all types of New York personal injury claims, including those involving delivery trucks and complex fact patterns. To learn more or to schedule a free initial consultation with a White Plains delivery truck accident lawyer, give us a call at 914-220-1086 or fill out our online contact form.
Who Is Responsible for a Delivery Truck Accident if the Driver Isn’t an Employee?
Many companies rely on independent contractors to make deliveries – such as Uber, Instacart, and LaserShip. If you are hurt in a crash with this type of driver, then you may still be able to file a claim with the delivery company and their insurer. The ability to seek compensation from the company – instead of just the driver – will depend in part on what the driver was doing at the time of the accident.
Our law firm understands these types of complicated accident claims and how to help our clients get the money that they deserve. We will fight for your rights, and work hard to ensure that you get the best outcome. Reach out today to schedule a free consultation with a White Plains delivery truck accident attorney.
Do I Need a Lawyer for a Truck Accident Claim?
Yes. The at-fault driver will – at a minimum – have the backing of their employer and its insurance company. To level the playing field and ensure that you get maximum compensation for your losses, it is vital that you have an attorney of your own.
Delivery companies and their insurers don’t have your best interests at heart. Your lawyer will advocate for you, protect your rights, and help you get the money that you deserve. In New York, call the Law Offices of Thomas L. Gallivan to talk to a White Plains truck accident lawyer.
How Much Is My Delivery Truck Accident Case Worth?
It depends. Several factors contribute to the value of a personal injury claim, such as the seriousness of the injuries, whether you were partially at fault and the size of the at-fault party’s insurance policy. For example, if you suffered a severe injury and the truck driver was 100% to blame for the wreck, then your case will likely have a higher value than someone who only got a few scratches and who was partially at fault.
During a free consultation, your White Plains truck accident lawyer will give you a ballpark estimate of the value of your case. This number may change as the claim proceeds. Contact our law offices today to talk to a member of our legal team about your case.