AT around 3:20 p.m. yesterday (June 29) , my companions and I were aboard a car traversing the United Nations Avenue in Ermita.
Since there was a construction project going on, the road was temporarily made one-way, Roxas Boulevard-bound.
When traffic went on a standstill, the cars before and behind us began honking their horns. We found out there was this huge ambulance blocking the one and only way.
I was not able to get the plate number but on it, I saw markings with the words, ‘Loreto’ and ‘Mandaluyong.’
One by one, the cars snaked through the very tight space that the ambulance had left because it was at a halt while half-turned right into the ‘Park and Swab’ are near the Manila Doctor’s Hospital and inquiring with the security guard.
When the car before us made its way out of the traffic mess caused by the ambulance driver, the ambulance began backing in complete disregard of the fact that we were right behind and our car was about to get hit.
When the ambulance came to a sudden stop after we honked the horn, we knew that indeed, he did not check if he was gonna hit a car while backing.
To avoid any accident, we backed a little and then steered to the left so we can get out through the tight remaining lane that was used by everyone else who got stuck due to the said ambulance.
All of a sudden, the driver swung open the huge door, missing our car by a hairline. Instinctively, we honked our horn. Every right-thinking driver would know that before you open your door to get in and out of a vehicle, you must check and make sure that there is no passing vehicle, even bikes or motorcycle that might get hit by your door.
Countless accidents have been caused by reckless opening of doors, when the one getting in or out of the car does not bother to check first if there is anything the door might hit.
Anyway, the ambulance driver who got surprised by the honking had the gall to get mad and curse.
As motorists, we are fully aware and conscientious enough to give way to any and all ambulances. However, the driver of the ambulance concerned was really abusive.
Since when did being a driver of an ambulance given the right to own the road? The driver concerned did not only cause one hell of a traffic because he stopped in the middle of a one-way street, without giving anyone their rightful space to get through.
Everyone’s time was put on hold just because he got past through the entrance and was inquiring with the security guards there.
He also nearly hit our car not once but twice and instead of making up by at least waving a hand, he had the temerity to get mad and curse, even pointing out that he was driving an ambulance.
Duh. It would be hard not to know that because he caused tremendous traffic and nearly caused an accident.
If we were not alert enough to honk our horn while he was recklessly backing, he would have hit us and the two vehicles would have had to stay there until a traffic enforcer arrives. Imagine the greater traffic such incident would have caused.
Whoever operates or owns this ambulance should make sure that its driver has road courtesy or at least the brain to know that driving an ambulance is not a license to be stupid or abusive.
This is precisely one of the reasons why armored vehicles were stripped of their sirens or ‘wang-wang’ during the time of PNoy. They have abused its use to the detriment of other law-abiding motorists.
If were not in a hurry at that time, it would have been interesting to check if the said ambulance even had a patient needing immediate attention at that time.
Some ambulances are also used to abuse the road, get through traffic in no time and trample upon the rights of other motorists.
Jokjok (from Julianne Sanchez of Pasay City)— Kikay: Eew! Lizard!/Astig: Shit, butiki!/Mataray: Shucks, butiks!/Mayaman:Yuck! Lacoste!/Mahirap: Pare, ulam!!
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