Accidents with emergency vehicles
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Many people have the belief that if they are involved in an accident with an emergency vehicle, they would not be able to make a claim and that the law would favour the emergency vehicle. However, this is incorrect and if you have been injured as a result of an accident with an emergency vehicle, you are entitled to make a claim.
Though the emergency services do have certain privileges on the roads when using their flashing blue lights and sirens, they still have a duty of care to ensure the safety of other road users and pedestrians. So when going through red lights or cutting through traffic, they should always check that it is safe for them to do so.
In addition, it is likely that emergency vehicles will be travelling at high speeds to reach the scene of an accident or incident and when doing so, the driver should follow procedure and take precautions to protect other people on the road. When the emergency services do not have their lights and sirens in use, the drivers should follow the normal rules of the road in the same way that all drivers are expected to.
If you are involved in an accident with an emergency vehicle, be it an ambulance, paramedic, police car or fire engine, you are entitled to make a claim for compensation. Even if you are partially at fault for the accident, there is still a chance that you will be entitled to make a claim.
Some people also feel reluctant to make a claim as they feel that it is morally wrong – due to the fact that an emergency vehicle is on the road to attend the need of someone else. Though this is the case and that is what they are on the road for, it does not mean that the driver cannot be at fault. Negligent driving behaviour can cause serious accidents which can have a devastating effect on people’s lives. So if you have been injured as a result of an accident with an emergency vehicle which was not your fault, you are entitled to make a claim.
What is the correct procedure in the event of an accident with an emergency vehicle?
Following a collision with an emergency vehicle, the same procedure applies as with all road traffic accidents. First and foremost, any vehicles involves should stop and call the appropriate emergency services if anyone is injured.
After making sure that any injured person receives the correct care, any drivers involved in the collision should exchange details. This includes name, address, contact number and insurance details.
In addition, further information such as vehicle details (make, model, colour and registration plate) should be noted, as should the date, time and location of the accident. If possible, you should take photographs of the scene as this can be invaluable information.