There is no doubt about the value of emergency vehicles for those in need. Fire trucks and ambulances have to be made big and heavy to do an adequate job of coming to the rescue of those who've been hurt or impacted by a fire. The people who drive those emergency vehicles can never be adequately rewarded for the job they do. The problem is that these vehicles can be involved in accidents and the results can be catastrophic. Read on to learn more.
Built for Heavy Duty
You may have noticed these vehicles around your town and never really noticed how different they are from regular trucks. These vehicles are not just vans or large trucks that have been outfitted with special equipment. Emergency vehicles are built differently from the beginning with reinforced bodies and rugged frames to take the use and abuse that might be necessary. It's only when you get up close and personal with one of these roadway behemoths that you really realize how big and sturdy they are. Unfortunately, it is these very qualities that can make them so dangerous for others that share the road with them.
Emergency vehicles are not just bigger and heavier; they often must travel at high rates of speed when responding to accidents and fires. When you add high speeds and heavy vehicles together, you get a significant hazard to others sharing the roads. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has studied crashes involving emergency vehicles and found that the severity of injuries and deaths are far greater than with regular vehicles.
Taking Legal Action
Victims of wrecks involving emergency vehicles may be more reluctant to take action due to the circumstances. The drivers of emergency vehicles are charged with a great responsibility – to avoid causing wrecks. They must be well-trained to do their jobs safely. Unfortunately, these drivers do make mistakes, and when you or a loved one is hurt, you are entitled to compensation. You have an expectation of safety and you might expect a greater expectation of safety from drivers of emergency vehicles. It's important that you speak with an attorney about your accident and injury. Your case will be evaluated for issues like:
- Was the driver acting under the scope of their employer at the time of the accident? If so, you may need to take action against the municipality that owns the emergency vehicle.
- Did your actions contribute to the accident? You also have a responsibility to drive in a safe and prudent manner and if the other proves that you could have avoided the accident your damages might be reduced.
Speak to a car accident law firm, such as The Law Offices of Siddons Law, to learn more.