Every day a lot of people need professional help, whether it’s a home that’s burning down, a crime that has to be attended to by the police, or a medical response. When it comes to emergencies, time is definitely of the essence. Literally a person could die in any moment.
Most of these responders have vehicles that are provided with certain privileges when they have to attend to an emergency. One of these is they can speed up their vehicle and ignore traffic lights (safely) as long as their sirens are on and lights are clear.
Now what happens should a speeding emergency vehicle hit your car or you find yourself in an accident and suffer an injury? Can you file a claim against the emergency vehicle?
Should a Claim Be Made?
More often than not, you’ll find yourself battling over morality about going ahead with making a cliam. It’s normal for a person to rationalise the accident: “It’s understandable as they need to get to an emergency as soon as possible.” “It’s their right to speed up and it’s my duty to be vigilant.”
But here’s the truth: these emergency services vehicles are actually no different from the buses, taxis, and other types of transport that regularly use the roads. Thus, they can also be held liable for negligence and be responsible for paying you justly.
This is based in the assumption that the driver of the vehicle involved has the necessary skills to drive the vehicle at a faster speed with a lot of focus, precision, and, most of all, utmost care. Moreover, he or she should be able to use the tools provided to them such as the flashing lights and the siren to inform anyone in their oncoming path that the vehicle is in the process of responding to an emergency and request for priority when it comes to the use of the road.
If, after careful consideration by a solicitor, should you have chosen to work with one, it’s been found out that the driver of the emergency services vehicle was negligent, they should at the very least can be considered a defendant in your road or traffic accident claim.
What Accident Details Will You Need?
First, you need the full details of the other party involved, such as the name of the driver, the vehicle used, license, and insurance company name and coverage. Since it’s assumed that you’ve suffered an injury, there should also be a police report filed. In fact, the police should be present at the scene where the accident took place.
Of course, it’s the duty of the emergency response vehicle to take you to the nearest health care facility for proper assessment and treatment. Make sure, though, that you have copies of these health records of any treatment received since they will also be needed when you file for a claim. Also, get all the receipts of expenses that can be associated to your accident, such as any hospital bills.
How Much Time Do You Have To File a Claim?
The law provides you with at most 3 years to file for your accident claim, although solicitors will encourage you to do it as soon as you’re able. This way, the claim can be processed more quickly and with less complications and objections.
For more information and what to do about claiming compensation for an accident with an emergency services vehicle you might like to take a look at this useful link.