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Reno-area accident involving firetruck raises legal questions

A recent accident in Washoe County left a motorist critically injured. The accident involved a firetruck operated by the Truckee Meadows Fire Department. In the course of the collision, four firefighters also suffered minor injuries. The firefighters were, however, taken to the hospital after the accident.

According to reports, the firefighters were on their way to a reported medical emergency when they collided with a Toyota Prius, a much smaller private passenger vehicle. There were no further details about the accident, although one can assume that further investigation will take place in the upcoming days and weeks.

Although further investigation is likely and probably necessary no matter what the victim decides to do in the wake of this accident, some might wonder what options this victim, or the victim’s family, has since the other vehicle involved was by all indications owned by a legal subdivision of the state.

Fortunately, Nevada law gives individuals who have been hurt by the employees either of the state or, as is the case here, a city or other subdivision of the state, limited rights to sue the government for negligence or some other tort. However, there are additional steps a victim has to take before he or she will be able to pursue a legal claim successfully. In some situations, not taking these steps by a given deadline can mean the person forfeits his or her claim.

Truck accidents and other commercial vehicle accidents involving government agencies can be particularly tricky if the victim winds up suing the state or other government entity. The involvement of a government vehicle is one of many good reasons why a victim of this type of accident should consider seeking out professional guidance.

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