The closer we get to Christmas, the more delivery trucks you’re going to see on the roads. That means switching lanes to get around a parked truck in the middle of the road, slowing down as a delivery driver looks for the right house number, and being prepared for drivers operating in areas they are unfamiliar with. Delivery driving is already a dangerous job, accounting for a significant number of workplace injuries and deaths every year. This number goes up around the holidays when car crashes increase.
If you or someone close to you has suffered injuries in a crash with a delivery truck, you could be entitled to compensation. Learn more now by calling Bailey Javins & Carter at 800-497-0234.
Increased Delivery Demands
There is an enormous increase in demand for deliveries around this time of year. Some estimates indicate that deliveries increase 30% to 40% in the weeks leading up to Christmas. But what doesn’t increase during that timeframe is the amount of drivers available. It is notoriously difficult to hire delivery drivers; the job is demanding, dangerous, and mentally exhausting. This means that drivers are hitting tough quotas under enormous pressure, lifting heavy items more frequently than at any other point of the year, and making an unbelievable amount of stops in one day.
Long Shifts and Fatigue
Delivery truck drivers are often on forced overtime in the weeks leading up to Christmas. Delivery services have a vested interest in getting packages delivered by December 23, and they will push their drivers to make sure that happens. Drivers could be working upwards of 10 hours per day.
Even in the best circumstances, that is a long time to be in a vehicle. When those hours of driving are interspersed with hauling heavy items to people’s front porches, getting honked at by aggressive drivers, and the shortest breaks possible, you’re certainly not in the best circumstances. It’s common to see fatigued delivery drivers on their routes, and fatigue can ramp up the likelihood of a collision.
You also have to consider the mental strain of driving a delivery truck. Drivers are generally on tight time limits—no one can forget how Amazon delivery drivers allegedly had to urinate in plastic water bottles because their schedule didn’t allow for proper restroom breaks—and they’re often driving in areas they don’t know well. That type of stress leads to fatigue even more quickly and can result in avoidable driving mistakes.
Difficult Driving Weather
Although the winter weather in Charleston tends to be quite mild, we do occasionally have ice, snow flurries, and rain. Even slight weather changes can cause accidents to surge. People get used to driving in good weather, and slick roads can make them panic. Even delivery drivers experience this, and the effect is actually even worse with delivery trucks. Large delivery trucks take significantly longer to come to a complete stop than smaller vehicles, and their stopping distances are even longer in poor weather.
Congested Traffic and Unfamiliar Roads
Traffic can be difficult to navigate during the holiday season. It’s even worse for delivery truck drivers—their vehicles have much larger blind spots than other vehicles. On top of that, drivers frustrated with the truck’s low speed and frequent stops often swerve around them, forcing the delivery driver to take evasive action. This dramatically increases the likelihood of an accident, especially when you consider how distracted many drivers are around the holidays.
Ideally, delivery drivers will be assigned to areas near home or that they know well. Unfortunately, that isn’t always the case. Delivery truck drivers often have a large geographic area they cover, and they can be assigned to any spot within that area depending on the company’s needs. This can affect collision risk. A driver who is stopping frequently to look at road signs or trying to read house numbers on homes that aren’t well-lit is likely to cause a crash.
Injured in a Crash? Call Bailey Javins & Carter Today
Collisions with delivery trucks can cause significant property damage and bodily harm. Don’t let them take away the compensation you deserve—choose Bailey Javins & Carter for your personal injury claim in Charleston. Reach out online or call us at 800-497-0234 to set up a consultation now.