Quick Deliveries at the Expense of Increased Truck Accidents
According to a recent report by ProPublica and story by the New York Times, Amazon’s delivery contractors have been involved in more than 60 known crashes and make up at least 10 known deaths since 2015. With more and more Amazon delivery trucks on the road during the holiday season, this study could be an indication for more of these types of truck accidents.
The report argues that Amazon is not taking enough responsibility in terms of liability for these accidents. Amazon argues that they take safety extremely seriously and that they require their delivery “service partners” to have comprehensive insurance so there is coverage for all. What exactly those minimum acceptable insurance limits are unknown.
The number of independent contractors delivering Amazon packages is only continuing to grow, with 2019 numbers at almost 25%. In a recent Buzzfeed News story, one of those independent contractors hit and killed an 84-year-old woman after not seeing her during his pre-Christmas rush. According to Buzzfeed’s investigation, the driver faced pressure to speed up his deliveries from Inpax, the company that Amazon contracted with, and even further down the line from Amazon themselves. The drivers are faced with immense pressure to get as many deliveries out as possible, with as little breaks as possible.
When the victim’s family filed a wrongful death sited, they cited Amazon, Inpax, and Gray as defendants but Amazon refused to accept any responsibility at all. All the while, Amazon still controls these drivers through an app, dictating the order of deliveries and the routes they take; yes, the app tracks the contracted drivers and will be called if they fall behind. However, Amazon’s lawyer stated, “damages, if any, were caused, in whole or in part, by third parties not under the direction or control of Amazon.com.”
With the control in terms of tracking delivery drivers, it doesn’t seem like Amazon’s lawyer’s statement can hold true. Let us know what you think, should Amazon be held somewhat liable for these increasing accidents?
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