When emergency vehicles respond to call, they often have to violate normal traffic laws. Of course, they are authorized to do so, as time is always of the essence, whether it is a police call, responding to a fire or an ambulance or EMTs responding to a medical emergency. This creates additional risk, beyond those normally encountered on Georgia's highways.
A recent car accident, involving a Warner Robins police officer and another driver, highlights those risks. The police officer's vehicle was divine east on Russell Parkway. He passed through a green light on Kimberly Road and struck the pickup truck. The pickup truck was making a left turn and apparently did not stop for the police vehicle. The car accident resulted in minor injuries to both drivers.
High-speed accidents can be catastrophic, with both emergency personnel being killed and injured as well as innocent drivers. Police, fire and ambulance drivers spend a great deal of time training to ensure the safe operation of their vehicles, but when moving a high speeds, bad things can happen.
For instance during a hot pursuit, suspects, police officers and innocent third parties are often injured or killed. These police chases have caused controversy, because most result from minor traffic violations or property crimes.
We are happy that this accident only involved minor injuries, but it points out the need for drivers to exercise caution when emergency vehicles are responding to a call. Here the police officer struck the back end of the pickup, a head on collision could have been much worse.
Source: The Telegraph, "Warner Robins police officer not at fault in wreck, deputy says," Becky Purser, June 13, 2013