Law Against Citizen First Responders

@worldwise1 (14888)
United States
September 10, 2007 12:47pm CST
I heard this while listening to the radio last night. I'm not exactly sure, but I think this applies to New York law. It is that a law has been passed which prohibits private citizens from acting as first responders in the event of any disaster. My question is why would there be a need for such a law? It seems to me that in an emergency of some magnitude, any available help would be appreciated. What are your views on this?
1 person likes this
6 responses
@Thoroughrob (11750)
• United States
13 Sep 07
Why would anyone come up with that law? If something happened in front of me, do they think I am going to worry about whether I am allowed to help them or not? I am not going to just stand there and do nothing and let people die because the law says I should. That is one of the stupidist laws I have ever heard of.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14888)
• United States
13 Sep 07
I fully agree with you, Thoroughrob. I think a person would be considered very cold hearted and selfish if they did not come to the aid of someone in danger. It would take someone without a conscience to allow that to happen.
@pyewacket (44037)
• United States
11 Sep 07
I think probably the reason for this is to cut down on the potential lawsuits that could occur if a first responder is other than that in the fire, police or ER profession--in other words a "civilian" or ordinary person...For instance so many people are still slapping lawsuits after the 9/11 incident as many were affected by the toxins released in the air during and after that disaster
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@worldwise1 (14888)
• United States
13 Sep 07
I do understand that, pyewacket, but I would weigh the fact of how many lives they possibly saved against a lawsuit anytime. I don't think a value can be placed on a human life.
@Aurone (4758)
• United States
10 Sep 07
I guess the idea is that its better to keep people away that don't have any emergency training because it is likely they will get hurt instead of being able to help anyone. Firemen, Police and EMTs all get extensive emergency training which helps them deal with those types of situations. I guess I can see the thought behind this law.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14888)
• United States
11 Sep 07
The real truth, Aurone, is that there are numerous people who are trained in CPR and other life-saving techniques unofficially. I have heard of many cases where lives were saved by ordinary citizens who just happened to be in the vicinity where an accident happened. I would not count these people out, and neither would the victims whose lives were saved due to their efforts.
• United States
10 Sep 07
That sounds like a stupid law they would pass in NY. After 9/11/01 they had hundreds if not thousands of citizens (both NYers and nonNYers alike) wanting to help that were not allowed to. So moron probably got hurt helping someone and is suing. It is crazy!! Rather they should have a law like France where you get in trouble for NOT helping!!
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14888)
• United States
11 Sep 07
Yes, maildumpster, it does seem that everything is bassackwards lately. I think that there will be much suffering to come as a result of this law.
@pismeof (855)
• United States
10 Sep 07
So if someone is drowning in a hurricane or a bridge collapses what is a citizen supposed to do just stand around and watch someone die?I don't think so.I'd like to know what jury would convict anyone for helping another citizen in distress. A law like that sure would have been useful down in NEW ORLEANS a few years ago RIGHT?
@worldwise1 (14888)
• United States
10 Sep 07
I think we are moving more and more toward a police state, pismeof. It does not bode well for victims in the event of future disasters. This is really stupid.
• United States
10 Sep 07
I would think more help would be appreciated as long as they knew what they were doing. I don't think they need to just get in there to "look" at the scene. When I was in high school some of the guys were first responders and I know they helped out a lot with situations. That's a crazy law.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14888)
• United States
10 Sep 07
I am in total agreement with what you say, sweetgirl. It would seem that any reasonably knowledgeable responders help would be welcome.