A Philadelphia FedEx truck accident lawyer works in a niche area of personal injury law. However, these kinds of accidents occur more regularly than you might think. According to the annual “Large Truck and Bus Crash Facts” report from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), almost 5,000 buses and large trucks were involved in fatal accidents in the United States in 2020.
Because there are so many FedEx trucks on the road and because drivers are sometimes incentivized to travel quickly to deliver as many orders as possible, crashes involving the company’s vehicles are relatively common. If you’ve been involved in a collision with a FedEx truck, you may be entitled to file a lawsuit against the company or the driver to recover compensation for injuries or other losses you’ve suffered.
How A Philadelphia FedEx Truck Accident Lawyer Can Help You
As FedEx truck accident attorneys, we help clients at all stages of the dispute process following collisions with delivery vehicles.
Firstly, we provide a free initial consultation, giving both attorney and client a chance to develop a proper understanding of the circumstances of the case and decide whether legal action may be appropriate on that basis. You’re welcome to ask as many questions as you want about your situation during this first meeting.
Should you and your FedEx truck accident lawyer decide to file a lawsuit, the case-building process will begin. This will involve a (potentially lengthy) discovery process, during which both legal teams request and exchange records and reports that are relevant to your case.
There will be chances to negotiate a settlement before going to court. With a strong case, it’s possible to persuade opposing counsel that reaching an agreement is in their best interests, thereby saving you time, stress, and legal costs.
However, this may turn out to be impossible. Companies like FedEx have well-staffed, well-funded legal departments and are usually willing to take to the courtroom if they think they have a shot at winning. Don’t worry; our litigators are never afraid to fight cases in front of judges and juries.
How FedEx Truck Accidents Happen
According to the company’s website, the FedEx Corporation has over 210,000 motorized vehicles on the road in more than 220 countries and territories across the globe. So, a certain number of accidents involving the company’s trucks is inevitable.
As well as this, however, there are factors related to FedEx’s business practices that may also be relevant in these cases. These factors include:
- Driver fatigue: FedEx truck drivers often work long hours and face tight delivery schedules, which can lead to fatigue. Tired drivers may have slower reaction times and suffer from impaired judgment and are therefore more likely to cause accidents.
- Inadequate driver training: Proper training is essential for anyone operating large commercial vehicles. Drivers who don’t receive proper instruction before starting work are more likely to make mistakes and less likely to be familiar with important safety regulations and guidelines.
- Vehicle maintenance issues: Large trucks require regular maintenance to ensure they remain safe to operate. Poorly maintained vehicles are more likely to cause accidents due to the elevated risk of mechanical failures, such as tire blowouts or brake malfunctions.
- Improper loading: Overloaded or improperly secured cargo can cause FedEx trucks to become unstable, increasing the risk of rollovers or other types of accidents. Proper loading practices are crucial to lowering the risk of cargo-related accidents; failure to implement these may amount to negligence on FedEx’s part if improper loading leads to an accident.
What to Do Following A FedEx Truck Accident
In the immediate aftermath of a road accident, as well as in the subsequent days and weeks, you should take several actions to protect your health and well-being and prepare for a potential lawsuit.
- Reporting the accident: Report the accident to local law enforcement via 911 as soon as you can, particularly if there have been injuries. The police will file an accident report after visiting the crash scene; this may be useful evidence for you later.
- Seeking medical attention: Even if you feel perfectly healthy after a collision on the road, you should always see a doctor. This is because some injuries or health issues do not become apparent immediately once they occur; however, detecting them early can be vital to ensuring a positive prognosis.
- Documenting the accident: If you haven’t suffered significant injuries, you should take photos of the accident scene, including both vehicles and any other road feature or obstacle that may have been affected. You should also exchange contact details with anyone else who was involved in the accident or who saw what happened.
- Saying as little as possible: When speaking with the FedEx driver, other road users, or witnesses, be careful not to admit fault. In fact, it’s usually best not to discuss the details of the accident at all. Limit your conversation with others at the scene to the exchange of necessary information.
- Notifying your insurance company: Report the accident to your insurance provider as soon as possible. Be honest with them about what happened but elaborate as little as possible about the accident once you’ve shared the essential details.
Who Is The Defendant: FedEx Or The Driver?
In situations like these, it may be possible to sue FedEx, the driver, or both, depending on the case’s individual circumstances. Even in a case where the driver’s negligence was clearly the cause of the accident, FedEx may be liable for damages in its capacity as the driver’s employer. This is known as the doctrine of vicarious liability.
A few considerations are relevant here, namely:
- Whether the driver was a FedEx employee or a contractor for the company
- Whether the driver was acting within the scope of the agreed duties of the job at the time of the collision
- How closely the driver’s manager dictated their approach to work and influenced their conduct while on the road
- Whether the company took the appropriate steps to ensure the driver was properly trained and compliant with relevant safety regulations.
It may be possible to name both FedEx and the driver as defendants in your case if it appears both parties may have been negligent. Every case is different, so you’ll need to consult a Philadelphia FedEx truck accident attorney to learn more about your situation.
Why FedEx Truck Accidents Lead to Challenging Lawsuits
Though FedEx is a massive corporation that invests heavily in insurance for its vehicles, it’s rarely willing to readily accept liability for accidents its drivers get into on the road. Insurance claims lead to increased premiums, a business expense FedEx would prefer to minimize.
So, rather than admitting fault, FedEx requires claimants like you to prove their cases, knowing that a certain percentage will end up taking a lowball settlement offer. Many people do this after becoming frustrated with the legalities involved in pursuing FedEx; that’s why involving an attorney early on in the process gives you an increased chance of success.
A FedEx Truck Accident Attorney Who Will Fight for Your Rights
If you want to pursue compensation following an accident, you need the right attorney to help you fight your case. The FedEx truck accident lawyers at the Cochran Firm in Philadelphia deal with cases like yours every day; we know the company’s strategies to evade liability and how to counteract them.
Contact the Cochran Firm today to request a free initial consultation about your case. You can reach us over the phone at 800-969-4400, via the form on our website, or by email.