Emergency Vehicle Operators Aren't Always Blameless in an Accident

Posted on: 5 January 2022

When you encounter an emergency vehicle, you are required by law to pull over if the vehicle has its lights on. This includes ambulances and fire trucks. However, because you are required to get out of the way, you might wonder if you are responsible if you are hit by an emergency vehicle. This is not necessarily the case and you will want to consult with an auto accident attorney before making any decisions regarding your accident.

Accidents Involving Emergency Vehicles Can Be Complicated

Your car accident must be analyzed thoroughly to determine what caused it and whether any parties were negligent. Emergency vehicles are allowed to disregard some traffic laws, but there are other traffic laws they must still follow. Also, an emergency vehicle is not allowed to drive in a negligent manner that causes your car accident.

Depending on the state in which you reside, you may not be able to sue the government as long as the first responder was acting in good faith and was responding to an emergency. Therefore, you will want to consult with a lawyer about what your legal options are.

Steps to Take After an Accident

The police must respond to the scene of the accident to issue an accident report. After the accident report has been filed, you will want to make sure to not admit fault for the accident. Instead, you will need to speak with a lawyer after you receive medical attention. Many lawyers offer free consultation and do not expect to be compensated until after the case has been won.

First, your attorney will need to determine if the emergency vehicle was responding to an emergency. If they were not doing so, they are held to the same standards as any other motorist in most states.

When the Driver is Reckless

When there is an emergency, the emergency vehicle is allowed to speed but within reason. If there is evidence that the emergency vehicle is being reckless, such as eyewitness testimony, this can be used to potentially reach a settlement with the employer of the emergency vehicle driver.

The emergency vehicle operator will also need to have the lights on to warn you that they're coming. If you are able to prove that the driver did not have the lights on, this can be used as evidence that the driver was negligent. Then, you can seek compensation for your injuries.

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