Seeking Justice & Full, Fair Recoveries for Injured Amazon Delivery Drivers
Amazon’s wild success as an online retailer has come with some serious risks and dangers, particularly for some of its most pivotal workers — its delivery drivers. In fact, a recent study reported that Amazon’s delivery drivers face an “astounding” injury rate, with at least one injury for every five workers. Moreover, Amazon delivery driver injuries have skyrocketed recently, surging nearly 40% since 2020.
The risks and accidents causing those Amazon delivery driver injuries can vary widely and result in severe, lasting trauma. Beneath it all, however, are findings that:
- Amazon sets obscene and “unmanageably high quotas for delivery drivers.”
- Amazon classifies delivery drivers as contractors, intentionally structuring the relationship to “maintain extensive control” over its drivers while being able to “dodge responsibility for the human toll of its intense productivity demands.”
If you or a loved one works as an Amazon delivery driver, here is what you need to know about:
- Risky working conditions
- The causes of Amazon driver accidents and injuries
- When and how Amazon may be liable for its delivery drivers’ injuries
- Your rights and legal options for filing a claim if you are hurt while delivering packages for Amazon.
Whenever you are ready for confidential, case-specific information, just reach out to talk to an Amazon delivery driver accident attorney.
What Are Amazon DSPs & What Risks Do DSP Drivers Face?
DSPs or “delivery service partners” are small companies Amazon contracts to fulfill its delivery needs. Handling nearly half of all of Amazon’s orders, DSP drivers transport packages from delivery stations and sortation centers to customers’ homes and businesses.
Amazon classifies DSP drivers as independent contractors, meaning the drivers are still technically employees of the delivery service partners. Nevertheless, DSP drivers are required to:
- Wear Amazon uniforms
- Drive Amazon-branded vehicles
- Use Amazon-provided technology, like “Rabbit” and “Mentor,” to track deliveries, set routes, establish delivery schedules, and monitor their driving behaviors in real time
- Deliveries: There have been reports of some DSPs having to deliver 350 to 400 packages a day. To meet those demands, an Amazon delivery driver would have to work a 10-hour shift, without any breaks, and make a delivery every 1 to 2 minutes. That type of unreasonable delivery quota has contributed to “unsafe working conditions” for Amazon delivery drivers, experts say.
- Routes: Amazon drivers must follow the turn-by-turn directions provided by Rabbit. They cannot change routes, even if traffic, road work, car crashes, or other factors would make it safer and/or faster to take a different route.
What does that all mean for DSP drivers? It means that:
- Amazon is trying to avoid liability by classifying drivers as “independent contractors.”
- Legally, if Amazon retains the “right to control” DSP drivers, those drivers may actually be employees who are due employee benefits under state and federal law.
- Just because Amazon says DSP drivers are “independent contractors” does not make it so under the law. Nor does it let Amazon avoid responsibility for DSP drivers.
Amazon DSP Accidents & Injuries
The demands and working conditions that DSPs are subjected to have been linked to all sorts of Amazon delivery driver accidents, including (but not limited to):
- Slip-trip-and-fall accidents: As the most common type of accident to hurt Amazon DSP drivers, slip-trip-and-fall accidents can occur as drivers hastily exit their vehicles, rush to get packages to front doors, or hurry back to their vehicles to try to stick to extremely tight delivery schedules.
- Struck-by accidents: Getting hit by objects, like fence posts, gates, and vehicle doors, is another common cause of Amazon delivery driver injuries. Generally, the head, knees, and feet are most vulnerable to these accidents and injuries.
- Dog bites and attacks: Amazon does permit its drivers to skip deliveries if there is a vicious-looking dog present. Unfortunately, many delivery drivers don’t see dogs until it’s too late to avoid an attack.
- Motor vehicle accidents: Routinely navigating the roads, Amazon delivery drivers can have elevated risks of being in car crashes, especially if they’re speeding or breaking traffic laws to try to comply with unreasonable quotas and delivery schedules.
That’s why the Amazon DSP driver injury rate is more than two times higher than the average injury rate for the entire courier and delivery industry.
Despite these findings and Amazon’s intense surveillance of its drivers, the company “has shown that it is willing to ignore and deny the continuing and worsening injury crisis among its delivery system workers.”
Adding insult to injury, Amazon does not include injury data for DSP drivers in the company’s reporting to federal authorities at the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
As harrowing as all that may be, it’s crucial for Amazon delivery drivers to know that:
- They have rights.
- They’re status as independent contractors does not give Amazon a pass to put them in danger or subject them to unsafe working conditions. Additionally, that status can face serious questioning when Amazon exerts so much control and oversight over DSP drivers.
- They could have various options for filing claims and recovering compensation for their harm, suffering, and losses caused by their Amazon delivery driver injuries.
Amazon Flex Driver Accidents
Like Uber but for package deliveries, Amazon Flex is a program in which anyone who’s at least 21 and who has a car and a valid driver’s license (and passes a background check) can deliver packages for Amazon as an independent contractor.
Like DSP drivers, Amazon flex drivers are required to use the company’s app for routes and delivery tracking, and they are subjected to quotas and Amazon policies that can give rise to:
- Unsafe working conditions
- Serious accidents and injuries
Some of the most common Amazon Flex driver injuries include:
- Head injuries
- Neck injuries
- Back injuries
- Sprains and strains
- Bone fractures
After suffering an injury while working as an Amazon Flex driver, you may be covered by the Amazon Flex Auto Policy and/or have other claims. No matter how liability shakes out for your potential claim, however, it’s crucial to remember that:
Insurance companies are not looking to make payouts, so the claims process can become challenging and even adversarial in some cases.
Having an Amazon delivery driver accident attorney on your side can make a major difference in the strength of your claim and the success of your overall recovery.
Talk to an Amazon Delivery Driver Accident Lawyer
Get answers about your rights, a potential case, and the next steps by talking to an Amazon delivery driver accident lawyer now. You are under no obligation to retain an attorney after meeting with one, and you do not have to pay any legal fees to secure legal representation if you choose to move forward with a claim. Amazon delivery driver accident lawyers work on a contingency-fee basis.