A female patient being transported in an ambulance by members of the Marion County Rescue Squad in West Virginia (WV) lost her life after the emergency vehicle collided with a Jeep on the afternoon of September 22, 2014. The accident occurred on Route 250 near the town of Barrackville. The four EMTs in the ambulance also suffered serious injuries and needed to be taken to hospitals following the wreck.
According to WDTV, the driver of the Jeep failed to hear the ambulance's siren or move out of the emergency vehicle's path. The crash happened when the Jeep slowed to turn off the highway, causing the ambulance to run into the rear of the Jeep. The ambulance then crashed through a guardrail, ran down an embankment and rolled onto its roof. A medical examiner has been asked to determine whether the patient died from accident-related injuries or her existing medical condition.
Beyond that, police must figure out whether the actions of the Jeep driver or ambulance operator contributed more to causing the wreck. While state law requires drivers to yield right of way to fire trucks, police cruisers and rescue vehicles, emergency responders also have legal duties to keep their vehicles under control and avoid collisions. Sorting out the exact chain of events will be necessary in order for the people involved, as well the family members of the deceased woman, to resolve insurance and compensation issues.
Now may be too soon to make such arrangements, but speaking with an experienced West Virginia personal injury lawyer who has also represented families in wrongful death cases could help the victims of this tragic accident protect their rights.