Grand Theft Auto Has Nothing On Hungarian Ambulance Drivers

You know the feeling when you got a really nice car in GTA, you try not to wreck it but it’s impossible not to in heavy traffic? For ambulance drivers in Budapest, speeding is a must, but crashing isn’t an option.

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5.21 miles in roughly under six minutes in a busy capital on a sunny day.

In Hungary, those responding Code 3 can drive through red lights, but careless drivers and heavy traffic jams still make it extremely challenging for emergency units to reach those in need as quickly (and safely) as possible, come rain or shine.

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But these guys are good. Very good.

For ambulance drivers, the route back to the hospital is even more difficult as they have to take into account that their patient’s condition can turn for the worst if the ride is too rough in the back.

What you see above looks like this on Google Maps:

Illustration for article titled iGrand Theft Auto/i Has Nothing On Hungarian Ambulance Drivers
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Instead of the estimated fifteen minutes, they did it in under six. Sirens or not, that’s amazing.

Hat tip to Cink!

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Contact the author at mate@jalopnik.com.

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DISCUSSION

matepetrany
Máté Petrány

Our Hungarian site, Cink made an interview with the driver. He is called Tibor Csordás, he’s been doing this for ten years, says 10-12 minutes can be the max response time, but there’s more:

I’m the only one allowed to shoot and share onboard videos at OMSZ (Hungarian Ambulance Service). These are used for training purposes.

Budapest has 15 stations, each have 1-2 emergency units, and if one is out there, we have to send a car from further. Sometimes, we also send out a less equipped unit to take care of the patient until the full on emergency car arrives.

Modern cars are so well isolated that drivers often don’t hear the sirens. The problem is when they get terrified by it and make a sudden move. They should stay put and simply indicate so I know that the other side is free for overtaking.

I used to be a cab driver for 13 years, plus I live here, so I know where the bus lanes end, that’s why I avoid them sometimes. The tram lane isn’t an option either because it is too bumpy, plus sometimes it’s impossible to pass a tram. That’s why it’s usually a no go for ambulances and firefighters.

High five Tibor!