Private Ambulance Company Not Immune from Liability for Negligent Care During Helicopter Transport

A private air ambulance company was not immune from liability for failure to ensure a patient had sufficient oxygen during medical transport on a helicopter, resulting in the patient suffering brain damage.


Maryland’s Good Samaritan Act provides immunity from liability to rescuers and medical providers for any act or omission in giving assistance or medical care provided without fee or other compensation, unless grossly negligent: (1) at the scene of an emergency, (2) in transit to a medical facility, or (3) through communications with personnel providing emergency assistance.


Maryland’s Fire and Rescue Act provides immunity to “a fire company or rescue company, and the personnel of a fire company or rescue company.”


The court held that the Good Samaritan Act applies only to individuals or volunteer fire and rescue squads, and the Fire and Rescue Act does not provide immunity to a private commercial ambulance company that is neither a fire nor rescue company. The defendant ambulance company met neither definition. Murray v. TransCare Maryland, Inc., 2012 WL 400441 (Md.App.  Feb 09, 2012) (not designated for publication).