blog home Car Accidents How Amazon’s Policies Push Drivers to Dangerous Extremes

How Amazon’s Policies Push Drivers to Dangerous Extremes

By Jason Bottlinger on July 30, 2023

Amazon is the leading online retailer worldwide. In the U.S. alone, the website gets two billion visits per month. The company is on track to reach $746.22 billion in sales in 2023.

Quick delivery time is one of the features that makes Amazon so popular. The company offers next-day and two-day delivery options for customers hurrying to receive their products. Unfortunately, Amazon’s policies can pressure their drivers, contributing to accidents.

What Kind of Pressure Is Put on Amazon Drivers?

Amazon has been known to sacrifice safety for speed, according to CNBC. Research shows that nearly one in five Amazon drivers in 2021 suffered injuries. This is reportedly due to steep quotas and pressure to deliver packages as quickly as possible. Amazon relies on a rapidly growing network of third-party delivery companies to pick up packages at its warehouses and deliver them to customers’ doorsteps. The company has faced scrutiny from labor advocates and complaints from drivers that its aggressive delivery quotas increase the risk of accidents and on-the-job injuries.

Of the army of drivers who work for Amazon Delivery Service Partners (D.S.P.s), some have reported working under tremendous pressure to CNBC. Current and former D.S.P. drivers reported running yellow lights and stop signs and buckling their seatbelts behind their backs in an effort to keep up with their delivery schedules. One driver described a 10-hour shift delivering 320 packages in 199 stops, with A.I. enabled cameras recording her actions 100% of the time.

Why Can Amazon Delivery Accidents Happen?

Amazon delivery drivers may be involved in collisions due to the pressure of meeting package delivery quotas that are too high. With long hours behind the wheel and tremendous pressure to deliver packages quickly, accidents may be caused by the following:

  • Speeding
  • Following too closely
  • Running yellow lights and stop signs
  • Distracted driving while navigating delivery routes
  • Improper lane changes
  • Failure to yield the right of way
  • Fatigued driving

What Are Amazon’s Policies on Auto Accidents and Insurance?

Generally, employers may be held liable for damages caused by their employees during their employment. However, Amazon classifies most of its drivers as independent contractors and denies liability for accidents they cause. However, the company dictates policies and performance quotas to which D.S.P.s and drivers must adhere. Amazon’s labor arrangements have been challenged in court by their drivers and by victims of traffic accidents caused by their drivers.

With Amazon Flex, drivers use their personal vehicles to deliver packages for Amazon, similar to rideshare drivers. These drivers must carry their own auto insurance, which applies if an accident occurs when the driver is using the vehicle for personal reasons. If a crash occurs while the driver is on the clock, Amazon’s commercial auto insurance policy provides the following levels of coverage:

  • Up to $1 million in general liability coverage for bodily injury to other persons or property damage to other vehicles
  • Up to $50,000 in damage to the Amazon Flex driver’s vehicle

Amazon also runs an auto insurance program for its D.S.P.s, but those companies are free to purchase auto insurance for their fleets elsewhere if they choose.

How Can a Lawyer Help After an Amazon Delivery Accident?

If you have been injured in a car crash involving an Amazon delivery driver, our experienced Omaha personal injury firm can explain your options under the law and help you pursue every available avenue of compensation.

At Bottlinger Law L.L.C., we are dedicated to providing compassionate and effective legal guidance and have won millions for our clients. Call us at (402) 505-8234 to schedule a free consultation with an Omaha car accident lawyer and find out how we can help.

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