Ambulance bosses apologise for cutting up Lotus

Ambulance bosses launch probe after dashcam footage shows one of its drivers pulling into the path of an overtaking car

  • Nic Foxton was driving his Lotus Elise when he was stuck behind an ambulance 
  • He attempted to overtake the slower ambulance on the A835 in Wester Ross 
  • At the last second, the ambulance pulled out in front of him forcing him to brake 
  • The Scottish Ambulance Service has launched an investigation into the incident 

An ambulance service has apologised after dashcam footage showed one of their drivers cutting up a holidaymaker driving his Lotus in the Scottish Highlands.

The Scottish Ambulance Service today announced they have launched an investigation into the August 19 incident on the A835 road near Leckmelm in Wester Ross.

Nic Foxton, from Skipton, North Yorkshire, captured the footage as he attempted to overtake the ambulance.

Footage from Mr Foxton’s car shows how the ambulance pulled out with minimal warning forcing him to brake heavily to avoid a collision.

Nic Foxton came up behind the ambulance in his Lotus Elise on the A835 near Leckmelm in Wester Ross, in the Scottish Highlands, on August 19 

He moved into the opposite lane and, with no oncoming traffic, planned to overtake the ambulance

Footage from Mr Foxton’s car shows how the ambulance pulled out with minimal warning forcing him to brake heavily to avoid a collision. 

A spokesperson for the Scottish Ambulance Service today said: ‘Our staff are trained to a high standard of professional driving and we expect due application at all times.

‘We are investigating this incident and apologise for the distress caused.’ 

The ambulance was not responding to an emergency at the time of the incident.  

Mr Foxton responded: ‘That’s very kind of them.

‘People stress and make mistakes, I only hope the driver is reminded he is sharing the road with other people and needs to be appropriately observant and considerate towards them.’ 

Mr Foxton shared the footage online, sparking a debate over who was at fault. 

Footage shows Mr Foxton, who says he knows the area well, hang back before accelerating and pulling out to overtake the ambulance, which he said was travelling at 40mph along the 60mph road.

With just a few feet between the two vehicles, the ambulance indicated and a moment later pulled out and blocked the Lotus’s path – forcing Mr Foxton to brake heavily

After Mr Foxton pulls onto the opposite side of the road, the ambulance indicates and pulls out in front of his Lotus Elise – forcing him to brake heavily and abandon his own overtaking attempt. 

He shared the footage to Facebook on Tuesday captioned: ‘Mirror, signal, manoeuvre *unless you’re a Scottish ambulance driver.’ 

But social media users were divided over which driver was at fault. 

One suggested Mr Foxton was driving like he ‘wanted to see the inside of an ambulance’, while another suggested the ambulance driver should have used his mirrors.

Yesterday, Mr Foxton said: ‘I was on holiday, I’m a regular visitor to the area normally at least once a year.

‘I was going out for the day intending to visit Gairloch. I started from Ullapool where I was staying and found myself joining the back of traffic soon after leaving Ullapool.

‘I’m familiar with the road but found this was the first opportunity to pass traffic.

Nic Foxton said he had waited for a clear view of the road ahead with no traffic coming the opposite way before pulling out into the offside lane

Mr Foxton was driving a Lotus Elise, pictured, during his break to the Scottish Highlands 

‘I’m patient and waited till there was a clear view of the road ahead with no traffic coming the opposite way.

‘Checked behind, indicated, checked again and pulled out to overtake while accelerating.

‘I had plenty of opportunity to be observed while overtaking and kept the indicator on while out in the offside lane.

‘As I drew up to the offside rear of the ambulance it put on its right indicator and pulled straight out into my path.

‘I was forced to brake and the car slid a little but was controlled very quickly.

‘I sounded the horn and decided to pull back into the safe side of the road.’  

Mr Foxton believes the ambulance should not have pulled out in front of him while he was trying to overtake it

Mr Foxton said the ambulance and the other car were travelling at 40mph on a 60mph road

One Facebook viewer said: ‘Why are you overtaking like that unless you want to see the inside of a private ambulance.

‘Yes it’s clear ahead but you still can’t see far enough to be sure it’s safe.’

Another disagreed: ‘He waited for a safe overtake and went for it, the ambulance driver was wrong obviously he did not use his mirrors.’

Another viewer said: ‘The guy was probably going for the overtake anyway but obviously he didn’t accelerate as quickly as you and probably didn’t expect to be overtaken either, that said a final check is always a good thing.’

And one member of the Facebook group added: ‘The sports car driver isn’t actually in the wrong, as much as I hate to say it.

‘If he had the right indicator on and overtook then the ambulance should have waited for him to pass then overtake.’   

Police Scotland confirmed they have no record of the incident.  

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