The drivers of emergency vehicles have a duty to operate those vehicles safely, even when responding to emergency calls, in the pursuit of suspects, or responding to a fire alarm.
Although these emergency responders are immune for liable for acts of ordinary negligence, the owners of the vehicles- typically their employers- may be responsible for the operator's acts of negligence.
"An owner or lessee of an emergency vehicle....is liable .... for any damages caused by a negligent act or omission of an authorized operator while operating the emergency vehicle in the performance of emergency service."1 However, so long as audio and visual alarms are used, the law does provide certain privileges to the operators of those vehicles. Experienced Baltimore personal injury lawyers know these emergency operators may park or stand in areas that other vehicles may not; pass through a red light if safe to do so; speed safely, and disregard directional signals. Nevertheless, they are always charged with the responsibility of using reasonable care and diligence as required by the circumstances of the emergency.2
-This Article was updated by Eric Kirk on 5/1/19.
I've handled cases involving allegations of negligence against the operators of emergency vehicles. Insofar as these claims necessarily involve claims against local governments and municipalities, the legal issues are complex. I offer all my client a no-cost discussion and legal analysis of their claim. If you've been involved in an accident with an emergency vehicle, contact me today.
1 Md. COURTS AND JUDICIAL PROCEEDINGS Code Ann. § 5-639.
2 Md. TRANSPORTATION Code Ann. § 21-106