This paper reviews the dangers associated with ambulances in the United States. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) data, vehicle collisions involving ambulances result in twice as many injuries as the national average. Other dangers include: the safety of the vehicle itself; the lack of sufficient occupant protection in the ambulance patient compartment; distractions of the ambulance operator associated with operating lights, sirens, and communication equipment during emergency responses; drowsiness of the ambulance operator associated with extended work hours; and the lack of standardized or tested emergency vehicle operator training. Recommendations for improvement include: safety testing for vehicle crashworthiness, testing of diesel fume exposure among emergency medical services (EMS) personnel, and improved safety procedures for EMS personnel. Every effort must be made to make ambulances the safest vehicles on the roads of the United States.
|Number of pages||4|
|Journal||Journal of Emergency Management|
|Publication status||Published - 2003|