Los Angeles Woman Injured in Crash with Ambulance
The Harbor Gateway area of Los Angeles was the scene of a serious accident on Saturday, June 29th, 2019. The driver of a totaled sedan had to be extricated from her vehicle by firefighters using heavy equipment. The unidentified woman was taken to a hospital in critical condition, although she was conscious and communicative. There were reportedly no passengers. Also injured in the crash were multiple paramedic firefighters, who were taken to a local hospital in unknown condition. It was unclear exactly how many people were injured in the crash.
Cause of the ambulance-sedan crash still under investigation
The accident happened at around 6:43 p.m. at 223rd Street and Normandie Avenue. According to Los Angeles Police Department Officer Melissa Podany, the Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) ambulance was headed north on Normandie. The driver of the sedan was headed west on 223rd Street. Officer Podany told the press that, “Independent witnesses have stated that the ambulance had the green light,” and the driver of the sedan ran a red light.
At the time of the crash, the ambulance was traveling at a normal speed. It did not have its emergency lights or siren turned on. It’s still unclear exactly what caused the crash, though it’s safe to assume the police investigators are considering whether the driver of the sedan may have been driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or driving while distracted. It’s not known if she lost control of the vehicle prior to the crash.
Not long after the first crash, the same intersection saw another accident involving an emergency vehicle. Shortly after 1 a.m. on Sunday, a driver struck the front of a Los Angeles police patrol vehicle that had been parked at the accident scene. There was an officer inside the vehicle, who was taken to the hospital in stable condition. The driver was taken into custody, suspected of DUI.
Common liability issues involving ambulances
In any vehicular accident case, a personal injury lawyer can assess the facts and the evidence to understand the liability issues involved. In legal terms, liability refers to which party was at fault for the accident. The party who was not at fault for the crash may decide to file a lawsuit to secure compensation if a fair settlement offer is not forthcoming.
In general, an ambulance with its emergency sirens and lights activated has the right of way on a road. Ambulances may exceed the speed limit and go through red lights, although drivers of ambulances are still expected to exercise necessary and reasonable caution to avoid inflicting harm on others. An ambulance driver who engages in needlessly reckless actions behind the wheel might be held liable for a crash. However, if the driver of an ordinary vehicle fails to slow down, pull over, and yield right of way to an ambulance with its emergency lights on, that driver might be found at fault for an accident.
Los Angeles personal injury lawyers protect your legal interests
With a successful track record of securing more than $350 million in settlements for our clients, the personal injury lawyers at Ellis Injury Law are committed to protecting the legal rights and interests of injured victims throughout the greater Los Angeles area. Our legal team handles all types of accident cases, including accidents involving emergency vehicles. Call us today to request your consultation. There’s never a fee unless we secure compensation on your behalf.
- KTLA5, Woman Critically Injured in Collision Between Car and Ambulance in Harbor Gateway, https://ktla.com/2019/06/29/woman-critically-injured-in-collision-with-ambulance-in-harbor-gateway/
- ABC7, Officer, firefighters and woman injured in separate crashes at same Harbor Gateway intersection, https://abc7.com/officer-firefighters-and-woman-injured-in-crashes-in-harbor-gateway/5371960/