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-   -   Good samaritans to be punished? Something isn't right here... (http://www.lucasforums.com/showthread.php?t=194654)

Darth Avlectus 12-21-2008 09:07 PM

Good samaritans to be punished? Something isn't right here...
 
Yeah, I'm referring to a ruling as of late that may lead to a new law.

A man wanting to help a crash victim out of her car accidentally injured her and made her a paraplegic. She has sued him. Case was ruled in her favor I heard.

Which, needless to say, is WHY they tell you to leave rescue to the professionals. I suppose if the woman was not in any mortal danger that, yes, the man should have just stayed there with her and not forced the issue. Still, he was only trying to help.

I know there are punishments out there for failing to assist in an emergency but do we need a law telling us we can't help out someone in danger? This is a bit of a dilemma. Contradicting laws. I'd hate for there to be two contrary laws and for it to be decided by an arbitrary (and usually very grim) district attorney.
Damned because you helped.
Damned because you didn't.

I can just picture a DA saying to someone
"I can decide that you'll get sued either way--because I said so. I'm the DA and you have nothing to say in the matter."

I'll admit, I have it in for DAs a little bit. Nothing personal though.

What do you think about this unfortunate turn of events and its implications???

EnderWiggin 12-21-2008 09:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by GTA:SWcity (Post 2569181)
A man wanting to help a crash victim out of her car accidentally injured her and made her a paraplegic. She has sued him. Case was ruled in her favor I heard.

Well, if you're not trained and you make a stupid mistake that cost the woman the use of her legs when there was no imminent danger, you deserve to be sued. Oh, and good source, by the way.

Quote:

Originally Posted by you
Which, needless to say, is WHY they tell you to leave rescue to the professionals. I suppose if the woman was not in any mortal danger that, yes, the man should have just stayed there with her and not forced the issue. Still, he was only trying to help.

If there were any imminent danger that resulted in him saving her life, the case would not have been ruled in her favor. Basically, "the road to hell is paved with good intentions."
Quote:

Originally Posted by you
I know there are punishments out there for failing to assist in an emergency but do we need a law telling us we can't help out someone in danger? This is a bit of a dilemma. Contradicting laws. I'd hate for there to be two contrary laws and for it to be decided by an arbitrary (and usually very grim) district attorney.

Wow, way to stereotype. If you're trained (such as a Lifeguard or First Aid Certification like I have) and you help someone, then the Good Samaritan Law protects you from liability. And I'd also like to see a source where there's a punishment for failing to assist. AFAIK, there's no penalty for not helping someone, unless you have a special case (such as if you are a fireman, or an EMT).
Quote:

Originally Posted by you
What do you think about this unfortunate turn of events and its implications???

I think you should provide an adequate source because the way you presented it seems to have factual inaccuracies.

_EW_

LordOfTheFish 12-21-2008 09:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by GTA:SWcity
but do we need a law telling us we can't help out someone in danger?
No.

EnderWiggin 12-21-2008 09:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LordOfTheFish (Post 2569190)
No.

If you're a stupid person who causes harm, then I'd wager yes.

_EW_

Darth Avlectus 12-21-2008 09:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by EnderWiggin (Post 2569185)
Well, if you're not trained and you make a stupid mistake that cost the woman the use of her legs when there was no imminent danger, you deserve to be sued. Oh, and good source, by the way.

NBC nightly news, and right now (6:30pm pdt 12/21/08) Yahoo news.

I'm not debating that much.

However the implications of this ruling do make me wonder if laws will be enacted and to what degree.


Quote:

Originally Posted by EnderWiggin (Post 2569185)
If there were any imminent danger that resulted in him saving her life, the case would not have been ruled in her favor. Basically, "the road to hell is paved with good intentions."

Yeah, you're telling me.

EDIT: Hmm. Apparently the failure to assist thing is more a reasoning for a case of neglect--and inspired by your acute responses I have found out the officer who told me that was exaggerating based around ambiguously written regional laws regarding neglect. :firemad:

I ought to send him to you to tear him a new one, EW.

Chevron 7 locke 12-21-2008 10:01 PM

She has a right to sue in my opinion. the guy wasn't trained and he should have just left her where she was

jonathan7 12-21-2008 10:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Chevron 7 locke (Post 2569215)
She has a right to sue in my opinion. the guy wasn't trained and he should have just left her where she was

Well your hardly going to be kissing him for leaving you a paraplegic are you.

With regards good Samaritans, just because you are attempting help, doesn't mean you shouldn't get it, if you did something stupid.

Besides first aid is basically common sense, so if you do get it wrong, then you deserve to be sued for being stupid. e.g. if someone has a neck injury and is in pain, and there is no immediate reason to move them, and you can wait for medical staff - why move them?

Admiral Buttercrust 12-21-2008 10:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Chevron 7 locke (Post 2569215)
She has a right to sue in my opinion. the guy wasn't trained and he should have just left her where she was

Now Chevron, I like you, and don't mean any offense by saying this,
But thats like saying you shoudn't get married because they didn't train you to do it in school.

Adavardes 12-21-2008 10:18 PM

Lesson learned: Don't play hero when you aren't qualified to do anything you're attempting to do. You aren't going to get a medal for being stupid.

The Doctor 12-21-2008 10:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by General Shazzle (Post 2569219)
But thats like saying you shoudn't get married because they didn't train you to do it in school.

... wut?

Det. Bart Lasiter 12-21-2008 10:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by General Shazzle (Post 2569219)
Now Chevron, I like you, and don't mean any offense by saying this,
But thats like saying you shoudn't get married because they didn't train you to do it in school.

excellent idea, i don't need to have a medical degree to be a doctor, not when i can feel the medical knowledge flowing through me

Achilles 12-21-2008 11:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by EnderWiggin (Post 2569185)
<snip>

imminent danger

<snip>

imminent danger

<snip>

Seems to be something of a judgment call, no?

Q 12-22-2008 01:14 AM

Tough call, really. If you have no training in how to deal with that kind of situation then the best way to render assistance would be to contact someone who does.

Now if the car is on fire, that's another matter entirely.

Rev7 12-22-2008 01:17 AM

You should probably know what you are doing if you want to help. If you can't do something right, you probably shouldn't do it.

Really depends on the situation though.

SW01 12-22-2008 01:28 AM

The traditional position in our system has been a reluctance to hold a rescuer to account, even in some circumstance where he has been somewhat careless, above and beyond the original wrongdoer. The rescuer's actions have to amount to something which 'breaks the chain of causation' - in other words, a consequence which would not have naturally occurred as a result of the original action (the crash in this instance). But this apparently simple definition has, typically, been bound up by new restrictions and tests and whatnot.

It does appear though that a rescuer has to something more than slightly foolish to be responsible, such as new or greater injury that wouldn't have happened anyway.

If it was tidied up, I think that this position is good. No liability normally, liability if you cause further injury (that would not have happened in any event, or in the course of the most careful and professional rescue) as a result.

It's another example of the dangerous slope towards 'blame and claim' culture, really. At least most reasonable judges now seem to be taking a dim view of claims like that.

And, just a further note - it is not unknown for an injured party to attempt to sue someone for failing to be a 'Good Samaritan', which English law doesn't recognise .

In my opinion, both situations are unacceptable, unless it involves, as said (often), further, forseeable, unreasonable injury.

Darth333 12-22-2008 01:29 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by EW
Well, if you're not trained and you make a stupid mistake that cost the woman the use of her legs when there was no imminent danger, you deserve to be sued. Oh, and good source, by the way.

Easy to say. Mistakes happen and do not always involve negligence. Next time someone needs help, people might think twice...and just do nothing for fear of being sued and loose everything they have in terms of possessions and future possessions (and even potentially ruin their children's and family`s future, monetarily speaking).

Quote:

Originally Posted by Qliveur (Post 2569315)
Tough call, really.

QFE. Especially since we don't have much details on the above mentioned case (since it refers to the DA, I imagine it is criminal prosecution, not just civil but I don't know much about the US system).

Every situation has its particulars. I am glad that in Quebec, not only we have good samaritan laws protecting people from being sued for any further injury or illness that results from the aid given (save gross negligence or intentional fault - more accurate summary here: http://www.educaloi.qc.ca/en/loi/other_infosheets/127/ ) in such as situation but there is also an an obligation to render aid if it can be accomplished without serious risks to the rescuer or a third person.

EnderWiggin 12-22-2008 06:37 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by General Shazzle (Post 2569219)
Now Chevron, I like you, and don't mean any offense by saying this,
But thats like saying you shoudn't get married because they didn't train you to do it in school.

Excuse me? This sentence makes absolutely no sense at all.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Achilles (Post 2569269)
Seems to be something of a judgment call, no?

Of course. Isn't everything? Luckily we have a nice little thing called the legal system in order to determine whether or not it was a good enough call to eliminate liability. If you are an idiot and think that a crashed car is imminent peril, even though the person is conscious and complaining of a neck injury with no fire or blood present, then you're wrong. I'm assuming the court took that into consideration.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Darth333 (Post 2569326)
Easy to say. Mistakes happen and do not always involve negligence. Next time someone needs help, people might think twice...and just do nothing for fear of being sued and loose everything they have in terms of possessions and future possessions (and even potentially ruin their children's and family`s future, monetarily speaking).

I'm assuming the court would not convict a non-negligent rescuer. And if you do more harm then good because of negligence, you should think twice.

_EW_

Darth Avlectus 12-22-2008 07:41 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jonathan7 (Post 2569217)
Well your hardly going to be kissing him for leaving you a paraplegic are you.

With regards good Samaritans, just because you are attempting help, doesn't mean you shouldn't get it, if you did something stupid.

Besides first aid is basically common sense, so if you do get it wrong, then you deserve to be sued for being stupid. e.g. if someone has a neck injury and is in pain, and there is no immediate reason to move them, and you can wait for medical staff - why move them?

That second comment--I'm not completely sure I follow due to your wording. I might implicitly... Clarification please?



Quote:

Originally Posted by Qliveur (Post 2569315)
Tough call, really. If you have no training in how to deal with that kind of situation then the best way to render assistance would be to contact someone who does.

Now if the car is on fire, that's another matter entirely.

That's what I was thinking. Call help and watch over the victim. That's what I'd do. In this case anyway.

If the car was on fire or going over a cliff or something like that, action would be necessary. Yes it is another matter entirely. Yet still relevant. We can go here too. I rather suspect people change their minds in this circumstance.

Quote:

Originally Posted by SW01 (Post 2569324)
The traditional position in our system has been a reluctance to hold a rescuer to account, even in some circumstance where he has been somewhat careless, above and beyond the original wrongdoer. The rescuer's actions have to amount to something which 'breaks the chain of causation' - in other words, a consequence which would not have naturally occurred as a result of the original action (the crash in this instance). But this apparently simple definition has, typically, been bound up by new restrictions and tests and whatnot.

Basically screw things up REALLY bad.

Quote:

Originally Posted by SW01 (Post 2569324)
It does appear though that a rescuer has to something more than slightly foolish to be responsible, such as new or greater injury that wouldn't have happened anyway.

If it was tidied up, I think that this position is good. No liability normally, liability if you cause further injury (that would not have happened in any event, or in the course of the most careful and professional rescue) as a result.

Tidied up perhaps...What about as-is? Could you enlighten us on the particular snafus?
Quote:

Originally Posted by SW01 (Post 2569324)
It's another example of the dangerous slope towards 'blame and claim' culture, really. At least most reasonable judges now seem to be taking a dim view of claims like that.

They didn't before?

Quote:

Originally Posted by SW01 (Post 2569324)
And, just a further note - it is not unknown for an injured party to attempt to sue someone for failing to be a 'Good Samaritan', which English law doesn't recognise .

In my opinion, both situations are unacceptable, unless it involves, as said (often), further, forseeable, unreasonable injury.

Thank you, this is what I was hoping to get into. The ruling has happened. Now it will come up again. Even if things are fine the way they are, it never hurts to attempt to bring it to the forefront.

I find blame and claim culture to be abhorrent, personally. However, I agree in the case of unreasonable handling, negligence, or other such things.
One would hope judges are reasonable.

I would not put it out of the realm of possibility that such laws for failure to assist could be attached to negligence laws preexisting. Perhaps my outrages were at some zealot's decision and it has since been reversed and I wasn't aware.

SW01 12-22-2008 10:09 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by GTA:SWcity (Post 2569417)
Basically screw things up REALLY bad.

Yep, just about!

Quote:

Originally Posted by GTA:SWcity (Post 2569417)
Tidied up perhaps...What about as-is? Could you enlighten us on the particular snafus?

Oh fun...

Now bear in mind that this is English, not US, law. It isn't so much that the law is confused, it is more that it lacks clarity, precision. Liability for rescue centres on proving that the rescuer's actions were not forseeable or 'natural and probable' in the circumstances. Actions of a rescuer are generally treated as foreeable, and courts take into account a 'heat of the moment' mentality on the part of the rescuer. So you can see how a careless action won't always be enough.

The tests that have been offered over the last 60 years are very imprecise, though. They call on the judge's opinion, really. The leading authority over here again uses vague language - forseeability; natural and probable result - which the judge (Lord Justice Stephenson) himself said would be a matter of opinion. That needs to be clarified, perhaps even by the Government by passing a law.

Quote:

Originally Posted by GTA:SWcity (Post 2569417)
They didn't before?

No. In the 1970s we had one of the highest-ranked judges in the land who was quite keen on extending liability in every direction (Lord Wilberforce). His Lordship didn't seem to get near rescuer's liability, though.

On the blaim and claim/compensation culture front, our courts have recently been getting badly bashed - mainly by the media, it must be said - for letting too many absurd claims through. There are a few very notable cases where ridiculous claims nearly got through, but in the most recent rulings, the Lords of Appeal (highest ranking judges) were clear that things would be tightened up, that things had gone to far for their liking. Which is good.

Quote:

Originally Posted by GTA:SWcity (Post 2569417)
Thank you, this is what I was hoping to get into. The ruling has happened. Now it will come up again. Even if things are fine the way they are, it never hurts to attempt to bring it to the forefront.

If that is a ruling in support of rescuer's liability, courts will probably have the chance to elaborate upon it soon enough - maybe impose some limits on it before a mass of overzealous claims come in for people suing the person that rescued them. (It really does sound absurd, no?)

Quote:

Originally Posted by GTA:SWcity (Post 2569417)
I find blame and claim culture to be abhorrent, personally. However, I agree in the case of unreasonable handling, negligence, or other such things.
One would hope judges are reasonable.

I think most judges are reasonable enough - it's when you get a jury in the mix that things can go strange (which, I believe, is how the US civil suit system functions?) Certainly, that's what a government task force here had to say of the US system in comparison to ours. (For anyone interested: BRTF report 2004 - page 16 particularly for US/UK comparison)

Quote:

Originally Posted by GTA:SWcity (Post 2569417)
I would not put it out of the realm of possibility that such laws for failure to assist could be attached to negligence laws preexisting.

I can't really speak for the US position on that, but from EW's link, it seems possible enough. We have a relatively long standing principle that a person cannot be held liable for failure to discharge a moral duty to rescue. (Lord Macaulay's Works)

Jae Onasi 12-22-2008 12:37 PM

Anything that would contribute to driving people away from helping for fear of litigation is BAD. I don't know all the facts in this case (i.e. was the Good Samaritan someone licensed in some medical profession, was there fear the car was on fire, would the lady have been paralyzed anyway due to the accident, etc.). The US is an insane patchwork of state Good Sam laws, some very good, some only adequate, some rather poor. Canada has a much better set of laws on Good Samaritan help.

jonathan7 12-22-2008 12:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by GTA:SWcity (Post 2569417)
That second comment--I'm not completely sure I follow due to your wording. I might implicitly... Clarification please?

That if you are not trained; help and cause someone great harm, you deserve to get sued. i.e. if someone moved me when I didn't need to be moved and left me a paraplegic, I would sue. However if ambulance staff moved me, and I was left so, the assumption would be there was no other option.

JediMaster12 12-22-2008 01:01 PM

I know that it has been mentioned before and I thought to offer my thoughts. Since I don't know the facts of the case, I couldn't tell you if it was right or wrong for the guy to move the lady from the car. As Qliveur said, if the car were on fire or something like that then the right thing to do would be to pull the person away otherwise that would open a can of worms that would be unavoidable.

If the person wasn't in any emminent danger, then the best thing to do would be to call emergency services and wait for rescue. I have heard of the phrase "leave it to the professionals" and in the case of emergencies like that , it would be prudent to obey.

I have mixed feelings regarding suing since I think a lot of it is ridiculous nowadays. I will concede that there are legitimate claims like negligence which could lead to criminal charges but suing for emotional distress to me is nothing more than a get rich quick scheme. Yeah a person could get emotional distress, even I could but I don't go sue happy. It's funny how here in the states we have so many privileges like the right to sue yet we prefer to abuse them with ridiculous claims that more often work. Heck it makes the "Twinkie defense" the lesser of two evils.

jonathan7 12-22-2008 02:16 PM

Edit: Source; http://uk.news.yahoo.com/blog/editor.../article/9758/

Well if there were concerns over the car exploding certainly puts things in a new light.

mimartin 12-22-2008 03:16 PM

I work for an insurance company and I know you can sue for any reason. Just because the court ruled the suit can go forward does not mean anything beyond the fact that both side will be allowed to present their evidence before the court/jury makes a decision.

In an insurance law situation, I’d say the Good Samaritan only has to prove that a “reasonable person” would have reacted in a similar matter.

I’ve been unlucky enough to have stopped at numerous accidents. So many in fact that I’ve went back and taken first aid and CPR training beyond what I received in Health class and the Boy Scouts. The Texas law only states you have to stop and render only the aid you have the ability to administer. Depending on your training, that can be as little as phoning the police and waiting for the emergency personal to arrive.
Even if you only stop, phone the police and talk to the victim it can still make the difference between life and death. The phone call alerts emergency personal, the staying at the scene makes it easier for the emergency personal to find the location (in cases where the vehicle has left the pavement) and the talking to the victim may keep them from going into shock.

On a personal note, even though they are terrible memories, ones that I hope never to repeat, I’m proud of the fact that I’ve stopped at the scene of accidents. Even in the case where all I could do was hold their hand and watch them die, at least they did not die alone.

Jae Onasi 12-22-2008 03:23 PM

Paralysis > dead from car explosion. Hitting a light pole at 45 mph might well have been the proximal cause of the paralysis anyway.

I can't believe the court is letting this go forward. Oh, wait--it's California.

mur'phon 12-22-2008 03:37 PM

Well, it's not like cars usually explode when they crash. That said, if the rescuer believes it's going to blow, they shouldn't be sentenced, as that would be punishing lack of knowledge.

mimartin 12-22-2008 04:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mur'phon (Post 2569580)
Well, it's not like cars usually explode when they crash.

I've been doing insurance for almost 20 years and I've only had three insurance claims were cars burned up, one was later ruled arson and the other two claims were paid, but the insurance company subrogated against GM and Ford.

IMO car explosions are not a regular occurrence. Never had a claim involving a car fire death, I wish I could say the same thing about car accident involved drowning.

Jae Onasi 12-22-2008 04:23 PM

The problem is so many TV shows and even regular media show cars that are burning and/or exploding after crashes that people accept that as the norm rather than the exception.

One thing I probably should bring up before we rag on the paralyzed woman too much for suing someone trying to help her in good faith. She may not want to sue her friend, but the insurance company may be suing her friend for her (whether she wants it or not) to recover the medical costs.

mimartin 12-22-2008 05:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jae Onasi (Post 2569608)
She may not want to sue her friend, but the insurance company may be suing her friend for her (whether she wants it or not) to recover the medical costs.

QFT

It may also be a case where the friend wants to be sued, but his insurance company is fighting the suit. She may have already gone through the car insurance policy limits and her medical insurance. Now the only option for any type of income is the friendís homeowners and/or umbrella policy. Dealing with being paralyzed is not cheap. Most people donít have coverage for disability income and a million dollar major medical policy sounds like a lot of money until you start getting the medical bills.

Darth Avlectus 12-22-2008 06:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SW01 (Post 2569450)
Yep, just about!
Oh fun...

Now bear in mind that this is English, not US, law.

Precisely why I asked! Thank you for indulging me.

Quote:

Originally Posted by SW01 (Post 2569450)
It isn't so much that the law is confused, it is more that it lacks clarity, precision.

Yes, it is rather ambiguous. Frustrating and time consuming...which ought to put grey hairs on your head under normal circumstances forcing your way through boredom...and even more grey hairs under stress, pressed for time and $$$!

Quote:

Originally Posted by SW01 (Post 2569450)
Liability for rescue centres on proving that the rescuer's actions were not forseeable or 'natural and probable' in the circumstances. Actions of a rescuer are generally treated as foreeable, and courts take into account a 'heat of the moment' mentality on the part of the rescuer. So you can see how a careless action won't always be enough.

Indeed. A subtle, yet vital, factor that ought to be considered *every* time.
It also separates, by large part the reasonable from unreasonable.

Quote:

Originally Posted by SW01 (Post 2569450)
The tests that have been offered over the last 60 years are very imprecise, though. They call on the judge's opinion, really. The leading authority over here again uses vague language - forseeability; natural and probable result - which the judge (Lord Justice Stephenson) himself said would be a matter of opinion. That needs to be clarified, perhaps even by the Government by passing a law.

While precariousness can be bad, I would say to take just as much (if not greater) CARE when enacting laws. Make absolutely sure it won't be a double edged sword that comes back to haunt you--or at least reduce the possibility of "getting cut" and dull the proverbial edges. Then again, I think you already know that.

Quote:

Originally Posted by SW01 (Post 2569450)
No. In the 1970s we had one of the highest-ranked judges in the land who was quite keen on extending liability in every direction (Lord Wilberforce). His Lordship didn't seem to get near rescuer's liability, though.

While I'm all about indiscriminantly scathing politicians at every possible point, I see how that sort of mentalitycould be bad--especially here which is why I even brought it up.

Quote:

Originally Posted by SW01 (Post 2569450)
On the blaim and claim/compensation culture front, our courts have recently been getting badly bashed - mainly by the media, it must be said - for letting too many absurd claims through. There are a few very notable cases where ridiculous claims nearly got through, but in the most recent rulings, the Lords of Appeal (highest ranking judges) were clear that things would be tightened up, that things had gone to far for their liking. Which is good.

Well that's good to hear. Unfortunately, I doubt if the mainstream is really on the people's side. It could be on a more local level, but nationally...that's still up in the air.

Quote:

Originally Posted by SW01 (Post 2569450)
If that is a ruling in support of rescuer's liability, courts will probably have the chance to elaborate upon it soon enough - maybe impose some limits on it before a mass of overzealous claims come in for people suing the person that rescued them. (It really does sound absurd, no?)

Absurd indeed.
Yeah, since there are so many everywhere--the type of litigious sharks and ambulance chasers everyone dreads even more than Darth Vader--it would be a good idea.

Quote:

Originally Posted by SW01 (Post 2569450)
I think most judges are reasonable enough - it's when you get a jury in the mix that things can go strange (which, I believe, is how the US civil suit system functions?) Certainly, that's what a government task force here had to say of the US system in comparison to ours. (For anyone interested: BRTF report 2004 - page 16 particularly for US/UK comparison)

We get a mix of judges, so in some cases a jury is actually better.
On another matter entirely, a jury could be a good thing...IE a parent "eliminates" his/her child's "attacker"... Prosecuted. I think any good parent would do it for their child and I do not believe personally that a parent should be found guilty.

Quote:

Originally Posted by SW01 (Post 2569450)
I can't really speak for the US position on that, but from EW's link, it seems possible enough. We have a relatively long standing principle that a person cannot be held liable for failure to discharge a moral duty to rescue. (Lord Macaulay's Works)

In cases of idiocy and causing damage I think we all agree such should be punished. Though it also seems, too, that we all agree upon how bad it might be to have laws discouraging helping out.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jae Onasi (Post 2569491)
Anything that would contribute to driving people away from helping for fear of litigation is BAD.

The general consensus. I'm glad to see you say that. How many Agree? I agree.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jae Onasi (Post 2569491)
I don't know all the facts in this case (i.e. was the Good Samaritan someone licensed in some medical profession, was there fear the car was on fire, would the lady have been paralyzed anyway due to the accident, etc.). The US is an insane patchwork of state Good Sam laws, some very good, some only adequate, some rather poor. Canada has a much better set of laws on Good Samaritan help.

Something needs to change--for better.
Actually, the same news article I referenced spoke also (mainly featured) of a case where a car was in a flood. A (river?) bridge overpass gave only enough clearance for the lower part of the car to go through and wedge in. the pressure of the flowing river continually pushing on the frame of the car against the bridge was crushing the upper part. The man passing by on the bridge pulled the daughter and mother out the car to safety. Just in the nick of time. The upper frame was crushed and would have no doubt killed them had they remained inside. Obviously okay and in fact encouraged good sam. in this case.



Quote:

Originally Posted by jonathan7 (Post 2569493)
That if you are not trained; help and cause someone great harm, you deserve to get sued. i.e. if someone moved me when I didn't need to be moved and left me a paraplegic, I would sue. However if ambulance staff moved me, and I was left so, the assumption would be there was no other option.

Ah. TY!

Quote:

Originally Posted by JediMaster12 (Post 2569497)
I know that it has been mentioned before and I thought to offer my thoughts. Since I don't know the facts of the case, I couldn't tell you if it was right or wrong for the guy to move the lady from the car. As Qliveur said, if the car were on fire or something like that then the right thing to do would be to pull the person away otherwise that would open a can of worms that would be unavoidable.

If the person wasn't in any emminent danger, then the best thing to do would be to call emergency services and wait for rescue. I have heard of the phrase "leave it to the professionals" and in the case of emergencies like that , it would be prudent to obey.

Another one for the record.

Quote:

Originally Posted by JediMaster12 (Post 2569497)
I have mixed feelings regarding suing since I think a lot of it is ridiculous nowadays. I will concede that there are legitimate claims like negligence which could lead to criminal charges but suing for emotional distress to me is nothing more than a get rich quick scheme. Yeah a person could get emotional distress, even I could but I don't go sue happy. It's funny how here in the states we have so many privileges like the right to sue yet we prefer to abuse them with ridiculous claims that more often work. Heck it makes the "Twinkie defense" the lesser of two evils.

Yeah. I hate it too, how we the people are abusing our powers (of court) in an irresponsible manner, and yet I find the most litigious of friends and family are quickest to jump on it when corporations or government abuse their power (in any way minor or major). Ironic how such a double standard exists--like they can do no wrong when they themselves are just as guilty of power abuse.

Oh, I absolutely agree.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jae Onasi (Post 2569577)
Paralysis > dead from car explosion. Hitting a light pole at 45 mph might well have been the proximal cause of the paralysis anyway.

I can't believe the court is letting this go forward. Oh, wait--it's California.

You know, I completely failed to consider that. Thanks Jae.

(sigh) Yeah, welcome to the jungle I live in. Living in a bi-state town it can approach pure lunacy. Even cops often don't want to have anything to do with out of state DUI--they mostly say the same thing..."Spend my whole night filling out paper work? "Flock" that!"

Quote:

Originally Posted by mur'phon (Post 2569580)
Well, it's not like cars usually explode when they crash. That said, if the rescuer believes it's going to blow, they shouldn't be sentenced, as that would be punishing lack of knowledge.

That arguement would be pitted against common sense. However, heat of the moment is a consideration too...as well as numerous other factors...
In most cases, a lack of knowledge is not necessarily gross negligence or stupidity or a lack of common sense. Again depends upon a number of factors.

EnderWiggin 12-22-2008 11:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by GTA:SWcity (Post 2569662)
While precariousness can be bad, I would say to take just as much (if not greater) CARE when enacting laws. Make absolutely sure it won't be a double edged sword that comes back to haunt you--or at least reduce the possibility of "getting cut" and dull the proverbial edges.
.

....since you have no idea how the law would be worded, how can you say that greater care should/could be taken?

Thanks in advance.

_EW_

Tommycat 12-23-2008 12:01 AM

I'm actually trained in how to respond to an accident involving injury. Even still, unless I saw fire, I would never move a person involved in a car wreck by myself. It is too much of a risk of further injury. Cars in movies explode because of special effects. You know like the ones that make them explode when you fire a few shots into them. The reality is that cars are more likely to burn up than to blow up. Unless there is fire, the car isn't going to magically blow up(though this may change with hybrids and the large battery packs...). You have at least enough time to wait for emergency personnel and the sizable amount of rescue equipment they carry. Very few people carry neck braces and back boards with them in their personal vehicles...

However, if you do see fire, the game changes dramatically. Absolutely pull them from the burning vehicle. Preferrably with the assistance of another person, so you can hopefully prevent further injury. Sometimes it is unavoidable.

Unfortunately I have had similar situations to mimartin. The worst was getting there just a few minutes too late.

Darth Avlectus 12-23-2008 03:12 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by EnderWiggin (Post 2569785)
....since you have no idea how the law would be worded, how can you say that greater care should/could be taken?

By being well read and not just voting things in blindly.

Quote:

Originally Posted by EnderWiggin (Post 2569785)
Thanks in advance.

My my, is that a chip on your shoulder? :)


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