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Emergency Vehicle Accidents


Emergency VehicleEmergency vehicles like police cars, fire trucks and ambulances get into car crashes too! Sometimes we forget that these vehicles can get into car crashes but fatalities caused by collisions are 4.8 times higher for emergency responders than the national average. Emergency responders have to travel at high speeds to reach a crisis, which increases the likelihood of being involved in a fatal accident. Unfortunately, 2015 had the largest increase in traffic fatalities since 1966. In this week’s blog, we break down the accident statistics for emergency responders.

Police Car Accident Statistics

  • Police pursuits account for 300 fatalities in the United States each year.
  • People not involved in police pursuits accounted for 30% of these fatalities.
  • Per million vehicles driven, police officers nearly double the rate of motor vehicle crashes than the general public.
  • 50% of all law enforcement officer deaths resulted from vehicle accidents between 1998 and 2008.

Firetruck Accident Statistics

  • Firetruck accidents are the second leading cause of on-the-job deaths for firefighters.
  • From 2000-2009, roughly 31,600 accidents involving fire vehicles occurred.
  • Of those accidents, 49 resulted in at least 1 fatality to a person occupying the firetruck.
  • Roughly 70% of all firetruck accidents happen during emergency use.
  • Incidents involving rollovers made up 66% of all fatal firetruck accidents.

Ambulance Accident Statistics

  • It is estimated that ambulances are involved in 6,500 accidents a year.
  • 35% of ambulance accidents had an injury or fatality to at least 1 person involved in the collision.
  • An average of three unique injuries occurred in accidents with injuries.
  • It is estimated that 29 fatal ambulance accidents produce 33 fatalities each year.
  • Each year, 600 people are injured in 1,500 ambulance accidents.
  • 63% of people killed in an ambulance accident were in a passenger vehicle, 21% were passengers an ambulance, 4% were ambulance drivers, and 12% were non-occupants.
  • About 60% of ambulance accidents happen during emergency use.
  • Emergency medical personnel have a higher risk of crashing compared to other first responders.
  • 58.8% of ambulance accident fatalities happen in the patient compartment.
  • 43% of ambulance crashes happen where two or more roads converge.

The Expense of Emergency Vehicle Accidents

  • In 2011, LAPD paid $24,000,000 for settlements and verdicts related to accidents that involved their police vehicles.
  • In 2007, Chicago paid $7,000,000 for settlements and verdicts related to accidents involving their patrol vehicles
  • It is estimated that emergency vehicle accidents in the United States costs $35 billion annually.
  • It is estimated that the global cost of emergency vehicle accidents is $250 billion annually.

Have you or a loved one been involved in an emergency vehicle accident? We can help. Contact our firm today.