Emergency Vehicles That Become Accident Statistics: Understanding And Limiting Accidents Involving Emergency Vehicles


Emergency vehicle accidents represent a nationwide problem for those involved in emergency services. These accidents result in tremendous monetary damage to vehicle equipment, as well as being costly in terms of personal injury, morale, and the public image of associated fire departments. As a preliminary investigation, researchers at a medium-sized southeastern university worked in conjunction with a local fire rescue department to explore the factors related to emergency vehicle accidents. The reported effort represents a field study where data were gathered through literature reviews, source documents, interviews, and naturalistic observation. Findings indicate a lack of mandated, standardized training and evaluation procedures, multiple stress factors within the operating environment, and little on-the-job driving experience as possible reasons for this high accident rate. This paper concludes with several recommendations in three major areas: policy changes, training, and public awareness.

Publication Date


Publication Title

Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society

Number of Pages


Document Type

Article; Proceedings Paper

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Socpus ID

0442310962 (Scopus)

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