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FedEx Delivery Accident Claims – What to do if You Were Hit by a FedEx Delivery Truck

If you have been injured in an accident with a FedEx truck, you have legal options. FedEx delivery trucks fall into the category of commercial vehicles, which are subject to certain regulations by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Because commercial vehicles are often much larger than normal cars, they pose more substantial risks to motorists and others on the road. Additionally, employees are often expected to drive continuously for long hours to make deliveries, increasing the risk of driver error. Aside from the normal traffic laws that all vehicles on the road must obey, the extra regulation that commercial vehicles, including FedEx trucks, are subject to means that there are various ways in which both the driver and FedEx could be liable for an accident.

What Are FedEx’s Responsibilities in an Accident?

FedEx is responsible for ensuring all of their trucks and employees meet the requirements commercial vehicles and their drivers must adhere to. If they do not meet these regulations and an accident occurs as a result, it is possible FedEx will be found liable in some capacity for the accident. Some of these regulations include:

  • Hours of Service regulations: The FMCSA requires all commercial vehicle drivers to comply with Hours of Service regulations, which are meant to limit the amount of hours commercial vehicle drivers can be on the road continuously. For example, a driver carrying property in their vehicle cannot drive longer than 14 consecutive hours. The overall goal is to reduce the risk of accidents by eliminating driver fatigue. Regardless of what state the driver is in, these Hours of Service regulations apply. Unfortunately, drivers do not always comply with these regulations. According to the FMCSA’s Safety Measurement (SMS) system, FedEx Ground drivers had 706 Hours of Service compliance violations in the two-year period between May 2018 and May 2020.
  • Inspection and maintenance requirements: Commercial vehicle drivers and their companies are required by federal law to ensure vehicles are well-maintained and safe to drive at all times. FedEx also requires their drivers to perform a thorough inspection of their truck before driving it. In a civil lawsuit brought against FedEx in 2005, the plaintiff-employee detailed the inspection protocol for all FedEx trucks. He had to conduct vehicle inspections before and after every shift, which included checking for fluid leaks, inspecting the headlights, tires, fluid levels, doors, and seat belts, checking the brakes and steering wheel, and circling the entire vehicle before entering. He was then required, as are all FedEx employees, to report his findings in a Vehicle Inspection Report. If any of this protocol was not followed, and an accident occurred as a result of driving a faulty vehicle, both FedEx and the driver could be found liable for negligence.
  • Mandatory employee background checks: It is the responsibility of the employer to perform background checks on all employees to ensure they have a clean driving record and are fit to drive a company vehicle. The FMCSA has outlined a list of general qualifications that all commercial vehicle operators must have, and that employers must check for. For example, if FedEx knowingly allows a person who has a history of reckless driving to operate one of their delivery trucks, they could be found at fault for negligence if that driver is involved in an accident, since they knew of his record and allowed him to drive anyway.
  • Obligation to train drivers: All companies that employ drivers are required to ensure they are trained in the safe handling of company vehicles. Whether it is a FedEx delivery truck or a tractor trailer, it is the company’s responsibility to ensure all their drivers have a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL), have completed entry-level driver training, and are equipped to operate a large vehicle or truck.
  • Maintaining the proper load requirements: The FMCSA has laid out guidelines for how much weight commercial vehicles are allowed to carry and how it must be secured. Overloading a truck with more weight than it can handle or not properly securing the cargo within can lead to a greater risk of accidents, as trucks that are overloaded can spin out or flip over if they have to make sudden stops.

What to Do If You Are in an Accident With a FedEx Vehicle

Even though FedEx is a large company, they are just as liable for any negligence that may have contributed to an accident as a privately-owned vehicle. FedEx is responsible for maintaining their fleet of delivery vehicles, as well as hiring safe drivers and training them properly. Additionally, FedEx owns all the vehicles that its employees drive. Because of a legal doctrine called “negligent entrustment”, FedEx can be found at fault for an accident caused by one of the employees they trusted to drive the company-owned vehicle.

If you have been hit by a FedEx vehicle, there are steps you can take to ensure you have the best chance of getting the full amount of compensation you deserve:

  • File an accident report and ask for a copy, so the damage done to your vehicle is on record.
  • Get medical attention as soon as possible, even if you don’t feel like you are hurt, so all your injuries are documented.
  • Take photos of the accident scene, if possible.
  • If there were any witnesses to the accident, contact them and see if they would be willing to speak on your behalf.
  • Discuss your case with an auto accident lawyer who will be able to advocate for you while you focus on healing your injuries.

We understand that getting hit by a FedEx vehicle can be a confusing and painful experience. Even though there is a large company on the other side of the accident, it may still be entirely within your rights to bring a lawsuit against them. NTC’s accident attorneys have extensive experience handling cases in which a company was on the other side of the negligence claim. 

To start a claim, get in touch with a vetted car accident lawyer today by filling out the contact form on this page.

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