2010 Tennessee Code
Title 55 - Motor and Other Vehicles
Chapter 8 - Operation of VehiclesRules of the Road
55-8-108 - Authorized emergency vehicles.

55-8-108. Authorized emergency vehicles.

(a)  The driver of an authorized emergency vehicle, when responding to an emergency call, or when in the pursuit of an actual or suspected violator of the law, or when responding to but not upon returning from a fire alarm, may exercise the privileges set forth in this section, but subject to the conditions stated in this section.

(b)  (1)  A driver of an authorized emergency vehicle operating the vehicle in accordance with subsection (a) may:

          (A)  Park or stand, notwithstanding other provisions of this chapter that regulate parking or standing;

          (B)  Proceed past a red or stop signal or stop sign, but only after slowing down as may be necessary for safe operation;

          (C)  Exceed the speed limits so long as life or property is not thereby endangered; and

          (D)  Disregard regulations governing direction of movement or turning in specified directions.

     (2)  Subdivision (b)(1) shall not relieve the driver of an authorized emergency vehicle from the duty to drive with due regard for the safety of all persons, nor shall subdivision (b)(1) protect the driver from the consequences of the driver's own reckless disregard for the safety of others.

(c)  (1)  The exemptions granted under subsection (b) to a driver of an authorized emergency vehicle shall only apply when the vehicle is making use of audible and visual signals meeting the requirements of the applicable laws of this state, except that while parked or standing, an authorized emergency vehicle shall only be required to make use of visual signals meeting the requirements of the applicable laws of this state.

     (2)  Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit the driver of an authorized emergency vehicle, while parked or standing, from making use of both audible and visual signals meeting the requirements of the applicable laws of this state, in the discretion of the driver.

(d)  An authorized emergency vehicle operated as a police vehicle may be equipped with or display a red light only in combination with a blue light visible from in front of the vehicle.

(e)  Notwithstanding the requirement of this section that drivers of authorized emergency vehicles exercise due regard for the safety of all persons, no municipality or county nor the state or any of its political subdivisions, nor their officers or employees, shall be liable for any injury proximately or indirectly caused to an actual or suspected violator of a law or ordinance who is fleeing pursuit by law enforcement personnel. The fact that law enforcement personnel pursue an actual or suspected violator of a law or ordinance who flees from pursuit shall not render the law enforcement personnel, or the employers of the law enforcement personnel, liable for injuries to a third party proximately caused by the fleeing party unless the conduct of the law enforcement personnel was negligent and that negligence was a proximate cause of the injuries to the third party.

[Acts 1955, ch. 329, § 7; T.C.A., § 59-808; Acts 1986, ch. 822, § 1; 1989, ch. 173, § 1; 2001, ch. 60, § 1.]  

Disclaimer: These codes may not be the most recent version. Tennessee may have more current or accurate information. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site or the information linked to on the state site. Please check official sources.