According to local news sources, an on-board ambulance camera shows a paramedic from Leon, Florida speeding toward an intersection, even though the light was red. A moment later, the ambulance slammed into the side of a passenger car in the intersection, injuring three vehicle occupants.
The driver has been suspended for several days without pay, one news article claimed.
One of the passengers, who was in the front seat of the car at the time of the accident, plans to sue the Leon County Emergency Medical Services for the damages that she sustained in the accident. A report from the sheriff's department said that the woman sustained a collapsed lung, bladder rupture, and broken pelvis in the accident. The driver underwent surgery for a back injury and another passenger broke two fingers in the accident.
According to an investigation launched by the Leon County Sheriff's Department, the paramedic should be held liable for the accident.
One report said, "Though Mr. Hunter was operating with his lights and sirens activated, his traffic light was red…In this instance, it is Mr. Hunter's (responsibility) to ensure that he slows to a safe speed in order to make sure that the intersection is safe and clear before proceeding."
The driver will not face criminal charges for the accident but is expected to complete a driving safety course when he returns to work.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), nearly 150 people were killed in emergency vehicle-related accidents in the year 2009. During this time, 90 people died in accidents that involve police vehicles, 35 people died in ambulance-related traffic collisions, and 17 people died in fire truck accidents.
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At Weinstein & Scharf, P.A., we believe that accident victims and their families have the right to pursue compensation for their injuries. If you or a loved one suffered an injury in an avoidable emergency vehicle accident or other traffic collision, speak with our team today to learn about your legal rights and options with a topnotch Coral Springs personal injury law firm.