Orange County Delivery Accident Attorneys
The rise of e-commerce and delivery apps has allowed us to relax at home while we wait for our food or other packages to arrive. However, this accessibility has led to even more drivers on the road, which means more accidents. Many Orange County residents have first-hand experience dealing with gig-worker for Postmates or Grubhub or have spotted an Amazon Prime delivery truck in their neighborhood. Because of a high demand for fast delivery services, these drivers can easily become involved in catastrophic accidents.
If you suffered an injury at the hands of a delivery driver, then do not hesitate to contact the Orange County car accident attorneys at Allen, Flatt, Ballidis & Leslie. Delivery accidents can be extremely complicated, and you will need the skill and expertise of a personal injury attorney to pursue compensation from an at-fault driver or their parent company. Call us at (949) 752-7474 to schedule a free consultation.
Numerous online services have sprung up in the last few years to allow consumers to quickly order clothing, electronics, groceries, take out, alcohol, and other personal items. Many companies rely on major transportation companies like Fed-Ex, UPS, or USPS, who are responsible for safely transporting items to destinations. However, others have utilized third-party contractors, which is the case with Amazon, and others utilize gig-workers to quickly respond to food orders.
The types of companies who can be involved in general delivery accidents include:
- Other third-party delivery companies
General delivery companies tend to have their own commercial liability policies that cover drivers during an accident. Even if your claim is with a third-party company, they should have a policy in place for you to file a claim against.
But if you were in an accident with a gig worker or same-day delivery service, your claim could be with:
- Uber Eats
- Amazon Fresh
- Grocery delivery services provided by grocery chains, such as Costco
- Food and catering delivery services provided by restaurants, including pizza delivery vehicles
Food delivery companies may have different policies than general delivery. Gig workers may be covered under their own personal auto insurance policy, a commercial auto insurance policy, or their parent company’s policy, depending on when the accident took place. Alternatively, companies like Instacart do not offer liability insurance for drivers, so your claim would likely be with the driver’s own policy.
Both general delivery and food delivery drivers are put under a large amount of stress to complete orders in a timely manner, which can lead to speeding, driver fatigue, negligent vehicle inspections, and distracted driving, all of which contribute to serious accidents.
Depending on the type of vehicle being used, a delivery accident may involve:
- Rear-end collisions: Distracted delivery drivers who are looking at their GPS or for delivery notifications may fail to brake in time and hit the vehicle in front of them.
- Head-on collisions: Drivers who are fatigued may fall asleep at the wheel and cross onto the other side of the road, resulting in a head-on crash with oncoming traffic.
- Side-swipes: While rushing, a driver may fail to check their blind spot and swerve into another vehicle while changing lanes.
- Sudden stops: Depending on where the drop off point is, a driver may suddenly break on a busy street to complete an order.
- Dooring: Drivers rushing to complete an order may open their door without checking for a cyclist or motorcycle rider.
- Mechanical failures: Delivery vehicles are constantly on the road and suffer a large amount of wear and tear. Their brakes, steering systems, tires, and lights may all fail during a delivery, resulting in an accident.
- Lost or lose cargo: If cargo is improperly secured in a delivery truck, it can become loose and shift the weight of the vehicle, causing the driver to lose control. The same can occur for food delivery, if the driver is distracted by trying to keep a food order from spilling. In some cases, the back door of a truck may not be locked in place, causing packages to fall out and strike other vehicles.
Any of these accidents can lead to serious injuries, expensive medical bills, and even tragic deaths. When this occurs, you may be able to file a claim with an insurance company, such as the driver’s personal insurance or the delivery company’s liability policy, depending on who is at fault.
When filing a claim against a negligent delivery driver, you may be able to pursue damages from their parent company. Companies like Uber Eats and DoorDash provide liability insurance to protect other drivers in an accident. However, these policies may vary in terms of when they apply or how much they will cover.
Generally, when the driver is on the way to a restaurant or waiting for orders, they are covered under their own auto insurance policy, either personal or commercial. It is not until they are in the process of completing a delivery that their parent company’s policy kicks in. When it does, you may file a claim against the food delivery service.
For general package deliveries, your claim may follow the same steps and processes as a truck accident claim. These companies, whether a third-party or direct service, are required to cover their drivers with an insurance policy. When the driver is negligent and causes an injury, their parent company is also liable.
However, major companies like Amazon do have some protection against liability. In most cases, they do not directly handle the transportation of packages and utilize third-party contractors to fulfill orders. In these cases, it is more difficult to hold them accountable for accidents, but you can still file a claim against the truck company that handled the order.
Delivery accidents can be confusing, stressful events. Many gig workers may not understand how their insurance policies work or if they are required to have commercial policies. With truck companies, there may be multiple parties involved that contributed to the accident and it can be difficult to determine which insurance policy your claim is with.
At Allen, Flatt, Ballidis & Leslie, our Orange County delivery accident attorneys have the experience, knowledge, and skill to fully investigate your case. We can sort through the evidence, explain the liability policies, and relentlessly pursue compensation on your behalf. If you suffered an injury because of an at-fault delivery driver, contact us at (949) 752-7474 to learn what options are available to you.
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