Should you pay for emergency services after a wreck? - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Should you pay for emergency services after a wreck?

By Karen Cohilas - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) – If you're involved in a car crash in one Georgia county, you may have to pay for emergency services.

DeKalb County will charge $250 if they have to cut anyone out of a vehicle after a crash. The fee should generate an extra $750,000 a year.

Leaders say they need the money to pay for upkeep on the "Jaws of Life" and other equipment. The Albany fire department used to charge insurance companies for the at-fault driver when responding to wrecks. They had to stop when a state law went into effect last year prohibiting them from charging insurance.

Albany Fire Chief James Carswell said, "The state law specifically prohibits insurance companies only. If we wanted to charge individuals the city commission wanted to do so, then we could charge individuals. The city commission decided they would opt not to charge anybody instead of penalizing individuals."

The Albany Fire department does not charge for using the Jaws of life or any other extrication equipment.

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