The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) says delivery trucks can weigh up to 26,000 pounds, which is more than ten times the weight of most passenger cars. When these large, heavy vehicles collide with another vehicle, a bicyclist, or a pedestrian, the resulting injuries are often catastrophic. This can leave accident victims in excruciating pain and dealing with expensive medical bills, all through no fault of their own.
The Chicago delivery truck accident attorneys at Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C. are here to help you get fair compensation for your injuries. We’ve been helping injured people for more than 35 years, and our team has decades of combined legal experience. The local legal community knows about our exceptional results, including the largest personal injury award for an individual in Illinois history.
Get a free initial consultation today by calling our Chicago office or visiting our contact page.
Dangers of On-Demand Delivery Services
Delivery truck accidents have become increasingly common in the e-commerce, retail, and supply chain industries. Especially hazardous is what is often called the “last-mile delivery,” which is a phrase that describes the last leg of the journey between when a package leaves a transportation hub and when it arrives at your front door. In retail e-commerce delivery, last-mile delivery has become an intensely competitive focal point for many businesses, both in terms of increasing speed of delivery while decreasing cost. If that sounds like two conflicting goals, it is.
Because of the logistics involved with getting mass-produced products to the consumer’s door, last-mile delivery is by far the most expensive, dangerous, and logistically challenging aspect of moving a product from the factory floor to the consumer. At this stage of the journey, each product must go to an individual address from the warehouse as quickly as possible, often with special delivery instructions and within a very specific timeframe. The last mile is ripe for delays, package damage, consumer questions, and even especially dangerous accidents (from warehouse forklifts to delivery truck accidents), all adding great time and expense to the retailer.
The market domination of Amazon has meant that other large-volume retailers like Walmart, Abt, Home Depot, and Menards have struggled to catch up with what Amazon now offers: free delivery of consumer products in a very rapid timeframe. The push in every sector of the retail e-commerce business has been to cut costs while decreasing delivery times. To do that, many companies cut corners in a way that endangers members of the public who must share the roads with drivers rushing to get packages delivered on a tight schedule. Drivers are often untrained and tired, and trucks that need to be on the roads 24/7 are not maintained properly.
Another critical flaw in the massive last-mile delivery apparatus of Amazon and many other online retailers is their increasing reliance on small, third-party delivery services. These services often use smaller cargo vans that fall outside of the type of vehicle regulated by the U.S. Department of Transportation. These vehicles and the people who drive them are often outfitted in vehicles and clothing bearing the Amazon logo. While they may function as Amazon employees in multiple aspects of their work, Amazon disclaims any responsibility for the suffering caused when one of these drivers is involved in a serious accident.
In the end, delivery companies’ push for speed comes at the expense of safety, which can put their employees, you, and your family at great risk. If you are injured in an accident caused by a delivery driver, you may need the assistance of an experienced Amazon truck accident attorney who will pursue justice for you.
How Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C. Can Help
Getting help from the right lawyer can make all the difference in a delivery truck accident claim. Delivery truck accidents are often more involved than other types of accident cases because there may be multiple liable parties and the injuries are often more severe. Here are a few areas that our Chicago personal injury lawyers can help you with:
- Gathering evidence and fact-finding – You can’t hold the liable parties accountable without evidence to back up your claim. Our delivery truck accident lawyers have extensive experience with these types of accidents and know how to build a strong case.
- Legal analysis – With our extensive knowledge and experience, we can analyze your claim from every angle. We will then build your case to maximize your potential compensation.
- Filing your insurance claim and settlement negotiations – Insurance companies save money by limiting how much they pay out when someone makes a claim. They will almost certainly try to minimize your compensation or deny your claim if they think they can get away with it. Having a seasoned litigator on your side can help you level the playing field against greedy insurance companies.
- Presentation during the trial – If your case goes to court, how you present the information is just as important as the information itself. After all, you’ll need to convince a judge or jury of your claims if you want to recover any compensation. We use the latest techniques and technology to present your case in a clear, compelling manner.
Evidence to Support Your Personal Injury Claim
One of the most important jobs of a personal injury lawyer is to gather the evidence necessary to prove your case. You might be able to use various forms of evidence in a delivery truck accident case, such as:
- Police crash reports
- Your medical records
- Video and photos from the crash scene
- Logs from the delivery driver
- The vehicle’s maintenance records
- Vehicle inspection reports
- Eyewitness accounts
- Testimony from expert witnesses
A knowledgeable lawyer can help you find the evidence you’ll need to substantiate your claim.
Common Causes of Delivery Truck Accidents
Some of the most common causes of delivery truck accidents are:
- Inadequate training or experience
- Cargo shifting or falling off of a delivery vehicle because it wasn’t loaded properly
- Impairment by drugs or alcohol
- Delivery drivers being overly fatigued
- Distracted driving
- Poor road conditions
- Bad weather
Will I Get Compensation and What Will It Cover?
Every delivery truck accident case is different, so it’s hard to say whether you could receive compensation by making a claim. A lawyer can review your case with you and tell you more about what compensation you could receive. That said, Illinois law allows people to pursue compensation for a wide range of losses after an accident, such as:
- The cost of your past and future medical bills related to the accident
- The value of your lost wages and reduced earning capacity
- The value of any property that was damaged in the accident
- Your physical pain and suffering
- Your mental anguish
The amount of compensation you could receive will depend on the available evidence, the skill of your lawyer, and other factors.
Who Is Liable for My Delivery Truck Accident?
There are several different people or entities who could potentially be liable for a delivery truck accident. They include:
- The delivery driver, if they acted negligently while operating the vehicle.
- The driver’s employer, if they failed to thoroughly evaluate the driver before hiring them or didn’t adequately monitor the driver for signs of poor driving behavior.
- Maintenance workers and cargo loaders, if they didn’t properly load the cargo or maintain the vehicle.
- The vehicle’s manufacturer, if there was a mechanical defect that led to the accident or made it harder for the driver to maintain control.
Contact a Delivery Truck Accident Attorney from Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C.
The Chicago delivery truck accident attorneys at Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C. have the tools, talent, and tenacity to help you pursue the compensation you deserve. We have recovered more than $1.5 billion for our deserving clients. Get a free case review today by calling our Chicago office or filling out our contact form.