A bus carrying several passengers was hit by an ambulance when it was crossing an intersection. The bus was on a green light and the driver said he did not hear the siren of the ambulance. This accident happened in a different country. But what if it happened in Florida? Who is liable? The bus driver or the ambulance?
For ambulances responding to emergency, every second counts. As a result, some of them go beyond the speed limit in order to save the life of someone in danger. Getting hit by a vehicle running at a high speed can cause serious injuries or death. According to the National Safety Council, 168 people died in crashes involving emergency vehicles in 2018. Out of 168, 47 people or 27.98% deaths involved ambulances. Out of the 47 deaths, 1 was a bicyclist, 1 was a pedestrian, and 21 were other vehicle occupants.
Emergency vehicles are given a certain amount of freedom on traffic rules. According to Florida Statute 316.072, a driver of an ambulance may do the following:
1. Proceed past a red or stop signal or stop sign, but only after slowing down as may be necessary for safe operation
2. Exceed the maximum speed limits so long as the driver does not endanger life or property
3. Disregard regulations governing direction or movement or turning in specified directions, so long as the driver does not endanger life or property
If the example stated above happened in Florida, the ambulance driver can’t be held liable right away. The attorney must prove that the actions of the driver “endangered life or property”. Darfoor Law can help if you are involved in an accident caused by an ambulance. You may call us at 754-812-8444 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also visit. www.darfoorlaw.com for more information.