The appeal was made by Dr Pumin Silaphan, deputy secretary-general of NIEM, following an incident on Wednesday when a 74 year-old woman suffering from a heart-attack died because the ambulance was held up in a minor road accident with a pick-up truck, whose owner refused to allow the ambulance to leave the scene of accident until the accident was settled by insurance brokers of the two sides.
The ambulance driver asked the pickup driver to let him go to pick up the patient first and settle the insurance issue afterwards at the police station.
However the pickup driver refused saying he didn’t want to ruin his clean insurance record of having no accidents so that he could get discount in insurance premium for next extension of insurance contract.
The sad incident was posted on the Internet and went viral on the social world with viewers strongly condemned the pick-up truck driver of being immoral.
Dr Pumin said that the patient’s death should have been avoided had she been sent to the hospital fast enough.
As a standard practice, he explained that an ambulance must reach its destination as quick as possible within standard practice and, in case an ambulance is involved in an accident, the case must be settled quickly with the motorist, so the officials can perform their duty.
Dr Pumin insisted that ambulances do not have privilege although they are allowed to use siren to ask for passage so the vehicles can move through the traffic.
He asked for cooperation and understanding from the public about the responsibility of ambulances and why they have to travel quickly to pick up patients or to arrive at hospitals.
Source: Thai PBS