senate Bill S99

2013-2014 Legislative Session

Exempts emergency vehicles from obedience to traffic laws when involved in emergency operations

download bill text pdf

Sponsored By

Archive: Last Bill Status - In Committee


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor

do you support this bill?

Actions

view actions (2)
Assembly Actions - Lowercase
Senate Actions - UPPERCASE
Jan 08, 2014 referred to transportation
Jan 09, 2013 referred to transportation

Co-Sponsors

S99 - Bill Details

Current Committee:
Senate Transportation
Law Section:
Vehicle and Traffic Law
Laws Affected:
Amd §1104, V & T L
Versions Introduced in 2011-2012 Legislative Session:
S7133

S99 - Bill Texts

view summary

Exempts emergency vehicles from obedience to traffic laws when involved in emergency operations.

view sponsor memo
BILL NUMBER:S99

TITLE OF BILL:
An act
to amend the vehicle and traffic law, in relation to exempting
authorized emergency vehicles from obedience to traffic laws when
involved in an emergency operation

PURPOSE:
To exempt authorized emergency vehicles engaged in emergency
operations from traffic laws and to establish a reckless disregard
standard for their civil liability.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section 1. Exemption from most of the rules of the road during
emergency operations and establishment of the reckless disregard
standard for civil liability.

Section 2. Effective date.

JUSTIFICATION:
This bill would exempt emergency vehicle, that are responding to
emergency operations from most of Title 7 of the Vehicle and Traffic
Law (VTL) when responding to an emergency operation. The only
sections that would still apply are the alcohol and drug related
prohibitions,

A reckless disregard standard would apply for civil negligence
proceedings against state and local governments. The Court of
Appeals, in Kabir v. County of Monroe, et al., fundamentally changed
the negligence standard that emergency responders and municipalities
face when responding to emergency operations. It limited the
application of the reckless disregard standard to only four specific
situations in VTL § 1104(b)(1)-(4). A narrow interpretation will only
hinder emergency responders with the fear of potential liability.
This bill seeks to restore the reckless disregard standard for all
traffic related incidents. Qualifying drivers will only be eligible
for this privilege if he or she has activated the lights and sirens
equipped on the vehicle. The sole thing a police officer,
firefighter, or emergency medical technician should have to worry
about is how to respond quickly and effectively to a scene of an
emergency.

A driver of an emergency vehicle is by no means relieved of all duty
to act. At all times, the driver must drive with due regard for the
safety of all persons and cannot exhibit reckless disregard for the
safety of others.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
2011/2012: S.7133 Referred to Transportation

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:
None.

EFFECTIVE DATE:
This act shall take effect immediately.


view full text
download pdf
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                   99

                       2013-2014 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                               (PREFILED)

                             January 9, 2013
                               ___________

Introduced  by Sen. GALLIVAN -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
  printed to be committed to the Committee on Transportation

AN ACT to amend the vehicle and traffic law, in  relation  to  exempting
  authorized  emergency  vehicles  from  obedience  to traffic laws when
  involved in an emergency operation

  THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND  ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section  1.  Section  1104 of the vehicle and traffic law, subdivision
(a) as amended by chapter 197 of the laws of 1970, subdivisions (c)  and
(d)  as  amended  by chapter 606 of the laws of 1994, subdivision (e) as
relettered by chapter 336 of the laws of 1968, and  subdivision  (f)  as
added by chapter 400 of the laws of 1975, is amended to read as follows:
  S 1104. Authorized  emergency  vehicles. (a) [The driver of an author-
ized emergency vehicle, when involved in  an  emergency  operation,  may
exercise  the  privileges  set forth in this section, but subject to the
conditions herein stated.] UNLESS OTHERWISE MADE  SPECIFICALLY  APPLICA-
BLE,  THE  PROVISIONS  OF  THIS TITLE, EXCEPT THE PROVISIONS OF SECTIONS
ELEVEN HUNDRED NINETY-TWO THROUGH ELEVEN HUNDRED NINETY-SIX,  SHALL  NOT
APPLY  TO THE DRIVER OF AN AUTHORIZED EMERGENCY VEHICLE WHEN INVOLVED IN
AN EMERGENCY OPERATION PROVIDED THAT WHEN PROCEEDING PAST A  STEADY  RED
SIGNAL,  A  FLASHING  RED  SIGNAL  OR  A STOP SIGN, THE DRIVER MUST HAVE
SLOWED DOWN AS MAY BE NECESSARY FOR SAFE OPERATION  AND  WHEN  EXCEEDING
MAXIMUM SPEED LIMITS, THE DRIVER DOES NOT ENDANGER LIFE OR PROPERTY. ANY
AUTHORIZED  EMERGENCY  VEHICLE  ACTING PURSUANT TO THIS SUBDIVISION MUST
STILL DRIVE WITH DUE REGARD FOR THE SAFETY OF  ALL  PERSONS,  NOR  SHALL
SUCH PROVISIONS PROTECT THE DRIVER FROM THE CONSEQUENCES OF HIS RECKLESS
DISREGARD FOR THE SAFETY OF OTHERS.
  (b) [The driver of an authorized emergency vehicle may:
  1. Stop, stand or park irrespective of the provisions of this title;

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD01962-01-3

S. 99                               2

  2.  Proceed  past a steady red signal, a flashing red signal or a stop
sign, but only after slowing down as may be necessary  for  safe  opera-
tion;
  3.  Exceed  the  maximum  speed limits so long as he does not endanger
life or property;
  4. Disregard regulations governing directions of movement  or  turning
in specified directions.
  (c)  Except  for  an authorized emergency vehicle operated as a police
vehicle or bicycle, the] THE exemptions herein granted to an  authorized
emergency vehicle shall apply only when audible signals are sounded from
any said vehicle while in motion by bell, horn, siren, electronic device
or  exhaust whistle [as may be reasonably necessary], and when the vehi-
cle is equipped with AND HAS IN USE at least one lighted  lamp  so  that
from  any direction, under normal atmospheric conditions from a distance
of five hundred feet from such vehicle, at least one red light  will  be
displayed and visible.
  [(d)]  (C) An authorized emergency vehicle operated as a police, sher-
iff or deputy sheriff vehicle may exceed the maximum  speed  limits  for
the  purpose  of calibrating such vehicles' speedometer. Notwithstanding
any other law, rule or regulation to the contrary, a police, sheriff  or
deputy sheriff bicycle operated as an authorized emergency vehicle shall
not  be  prohibited  from using any sidewalk, highway, street or roadway
during an emergency operation.
  [(e) The foregoing provisions shall  not  relieve  the  driver  of  an
authorized  emergency vehicle from the duty to drive with due regard for
the safety of all persons, nor shall such provisions protect the  driver
from  the  consequences  of  his  reckless  disregard  for the safety of
others.
  (f)] (D) Notwithstanding any other law,  rule  or  regulation  to  the
contrary,  an ambulance operated in the course of an emergency shall not
be prohibited from using  any  highway,  street  or  roadway;  provided,
however,  that  an  authority having jurisdiction over any such highway,
street or roadway may specifically prohibit travel thereon by ambulances
if such authority shall deem such travel to be extremely  hazardous  and
would endanger patients being transported thereby.
  S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.

Comments

Open Legislation comments facilitate discussion of New York State legislation. All comments are subject to moderation. Comments deemed off-topic, commercial, campaign-related, self-promotional; or that contain profanity or hate speech; or that link to sites outside of the nysenate.gov domain are not permitted, and will not be published. Comment moderation is generally performed Monday through Friday.

By contributing or voting you agree to the Terms of Participation and verify you are over 13.