Amazon’s Response to Mauled Driver? A Paw Print Emoji

Amazon’s Response to Mauled Driver? A Paw Print Emoji

Amazon, a company famously known for its tact and grace when dealing with workplace hardships said this week it would start placing puppy paw print icons on delivery routes days after one of its drivers was allegedly mauled to death while delivering a package.

On Wednesday Vice published a message sent to some drivers titled “Dog Awareness/Engagement” which blithely called on workers to watch out for, “our-four legged customers.” The message said Amazon would add a “paw print icon” in a driver’s delivery notes to inform them they should, “be aware of a dog at this stop.”

“If we know Fido is nearby, we’ll add the paw print to give you a heads up,” the note sent to drivers reads. “As always, contact the customer to help you with the pet, or ‘Driver Support’ in the Delivery App if you can’t reach the customer.”

The deceased Amazon driver was reportedly found dead in an Excelsior Springs, Missouri yard earlier this week, surrounded by two highly aggressive dogs, according to NBC News. Police from the Ray County Sheriff’s office arrived on the scene after neighbours reported seeing an Amazon van parked outside for hours. Deputies shot and killed the two dogs when they arrived on the scene.

Though Ray County Sheriff Scott Childers told Vice he could not definitively say the death was caused by the dogs until an official autopsy report was released, he said the driver experienced a, “tremendous amount of trauma to his body consistent with canine bites.” The sheriff said the driver managed to deliver their package before he died.

“It [the package] was sitting at the front door,” Childers told Vice.

Amazon drivers discussed the attacks and Amazon’s response in several group chats viewed by Gizmodo and, in some cases, spoke out against Amazon for failing to provide adequate safety measures.

“Shit happens and Amazon doesn’t prepare you for matters of circumstance like that,” one driver wrote on a Discord server. “Especially as half the purpose many of these families are getting a dog for is for protection from strangers.”

In other cases, drivers recounted scenarios of running away from attacking dogs or even punching them to avoid being bitten, only to later have customers report the drivers to Amazon support. Several drivers criticised the tone of Amazon’s messaging following the attack.

“Like, they’re making fucking cute jokes after a guy was viciously killed?” another driver wrote. “Anyone have a recommendation for something to defend against a dog?”

Amazon did not respond to Gizmodo’s request for comment.

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