Emergency responders – including police officers – are given an enormous responsibility to make it to emergencies quickly. However, there is also an expectation that they will do so as safely as possible.
These government workers are given a great deal of latitude in terms of liability, but only so long as they are acting within the scope of their employment and only as long as they are behaving reasonably under the circumstances.
Still, when the public is placed in jeopardy as a result of these actions, there may be grounds for litigation. The U.S. Department of Transportation estimates there are approximately 250,000 high speed chases annually. Of those, between 6,000 and 8,000 end in crashes, claiming the lives of 500 people and injuring some 5,000.