There was a tremendous increase in home delivery over the last four months as brick and mortar stores were ordered shut and consumers were reluctant to go out shopping. Transporting home delivery merchandise, known as last-mile delivery, involved more small trucks. To consider safety consequences of this delivery, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration will begin a through review of truck accidents involving smaller trucks.

Government has incomplete information

The FMCSA questioned data gathered on crashes on smaller trucks weighing 6,001 to 10,000 pounds that are used in last-mile delivery. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s latest data indicated that there were only five fatal accidents involving these vehicles from 2016 to 2018. The FMCSA questioned how the data was coded, believes that the actual figure is much greater and will further investigate how data is gathered.

Representatives from nine companies, including Amazon, will also appear before the FMCSA. It is anticipated that these companies will present information on their practices for recruiting drivers and safety oversight.

The FMCSA will compile information from nine states. The US Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the National Safety Council, the Transportation Research Board, and the American Association of State Highway Transportation will also brief officials on workplace injuries and smaller truck crashes.

More miles and less oversight

According to a union representative, the shutdowns over the last four months had package delivery operations operating at unprecedented levels for that time of year. Safety concerns will grow as even more operators take to the road.

Unlike large trucks, these vehicles operate with little federal oversight. Existing rules are currently complex and confusing. Nearly all these vehicles operating from 2016 to 2018 had no federal government oversight.

Dealing with high volume and tight deadlines may increase the likelihood of negligent drivers. An attorney can help victims of an accident caused by a last mile operator seek compensation for their injuries.