Amazon Driver Killed in Suspected Dog Attack While Delivering Package

A Missouri sheriff says the driver had a great deal of trauma to his body consistent with dog bites.

Laura Hautala Former Senior Writer
Laura wrote about e-commerce and Amazon, and she occasionally covered cool science topics. Previously, she broke down cybersecurity and privacy issues for CNET readers. Laura is based in Tacoma, Washington, and was into sourdough before the pandemic.
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Laura Hautala
2 min read
A blue Amazon delivery van with the Prime logo on the side is seen in at a crosswalk.
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An Amazon delivery driver died Monday after delivering a package to a home with two dogs that law enforcement described as aggressive. Neighbors to the Excelsior Springs, Missouri, home called the police after noticing an Amazon delivery vehicle idling at the curb for a couple hours.

Ray County Sheriff Scott Childers said that the man's wounds were consistent with dog bites, but that the official cause of death isn't known yet. Childers said he hopes to have the coroner's determination on the cause of death by Wednesday afternoon. Dog bites are a major concern for Amazon delivery drivers, who typically work for small companies that contract with Amazon to make deliveries. 

"We're deeply saddened by tonight's tragic incident involving a member of our Amazon family and will be providing support to the team and the driver's loved ones," said Amazon spokesperson Lisa Levandowski in a statement. "We are assisting law enforcement in their investigation."

Childers told CNET the county hasn't seen a severe dog attack before, but that a dog bit a different Amazon driver on the forearm in a separate incident on Sunday. Excelsior Springs is about 30 miles northeast of Kansas City, Missouri.

The death comes as Amazon faces scrutiny from state and federal workplace safety agencies for conditions in its warehouses. Four Amazon warehouse workers died over the summer in separate incidents. Like warehouse workers, delivery drivers say the pace of work Amazon demands forces them to do their jobs unsafely or risk falling behind. Advocates contend this increases the drivers' risk of injury, with one union-affiliated group saying one in five drivers were injured in 2021.

Drivers say that altercations with customers, and with neighbors near residences where they deliver packages, are also a problem. 

Childers said the dogs, a mastiff and a German shepherd, bared their teeth and moved toward sheriff's deputies responding to the scene. A deputy shot one of the dogs because they feared they'd be attacked, Childers said. Once Childers arrived at the scene, he entered the home and shot both dogs.

The residents of the house were out of town, but both dogs had plenty of food and water and were being checked in on by someone, Childers said.