If a 501c3 organization owned/operated a fire truck and allowed occupants to ride on top of the truck in unsecured positions, could it be held liable if someone was injured?

Could the operator of the fire truck and the organization be held to any civil or criminal litigation in the event of an accident that resulted in injury to person(s) riding on top of the truck at the time of the accident? Does the signing of a “Waver” have any difference?

Asked on November 10, 2014 under Personal Injury, Texas


S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

The organization will be liable for injuries to people riding on top of the fire truck whether they are secured or unsecured.

Liability will include medical bills, pain and suffering ( an amount in addition to the medical bills based on the medical reports documenting the nature and extent of the injuries) and wage loss.

This would be a civil case (lawsuit).

There may be a separate criminal case if riding unsecured on top of the fire truck violates a law or is construed as criminal negligence or reckless endangerment.

The criminal and civil cases are separate.

A waiver will be ineffective.

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