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Ambulance Drivers Warned of Misusing Road Traffic Regulations

Chikumbe Chikumbe - file photo

Ministry of Health has warned ambulance drivers in the country to desist from misusing traffic regulations guiding their operations during emergencies.

Ministry's spokesperson Adrian Chikumbe told Zodiak Online on Monday that they have issued the warning following growing tendency of some ambulance drivers that have been using white line (middle of the road), headlights and sirens even if they have not carried patients or rushing to an emergency.

Chikumbe said ambulance drivers should strictly adhere to the laid down code of conduct guiding the use of their vehicles, saying some have been misusing the privilege.

Chikumbe added that even during emergencies, they should also observe the law of due regard where they consider the safety of other road users.

"We have seen that this kind of behavior is becoming rampant that drivers willy nilly even when they are not rushing to the hospital with a patient or to get a patient drive on the white line of the roads with a siren and even with beacon lamp. This is not the right thing to do," he said.

Malawi Health Equity Network (MHEN) executive director George Jobe, says the warning is timely as some drivers were seen misusing the privilege, for instance, using the headlights or sirens while they had carried non-emergency passengers or goods.

"That statement is very important because sometimes, we have seen ambulance abused," he said.

The country’s traffic regulations mandate emergency vehicles to use the privileges under the civil protection or in execution of their duties.

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