Plaintiffs appeal as of right from a Wayne Circuit Court order granting defendants' motion for summary disposition. MCR 2.116(C)(8). We affirm.
On November 3, 1986, Lance McGhee, an on-duty Detroit police officer, was injured as the result of a head-on collision with a car driven by Tuwain Jackson. At the time of the collision, Jackson was speeding in an attempt to elude pursuit by a Michigan State Police vehicle driven by defendant Audrey Gunter. Gunter and her partner, David Liggons, initiated the high-speed chase after Jackson failed to pull over upon request. McGhee and his partner were in the vicinity and heard a general broadcast that the Michigan State Police were involved in a chase. McGhee, driving a fully marked police car, proceeded in the general area of the chase to provide additional support. McGhee proceeded towards Jackson's vehicle with his lights and sirens activated. Jackson crossed the center line and crashed headon into McGhee's vehicle.
Plaintiffs brought suit against defendants, the Department of State Police and the two individual troopers, claiming that the defendant troopers negligently began and continued a vehicle chase that resulted in injury to Officer McGhee. The circuit court held that plaintiffs were banned from bringing suit by the "fireman's rule" adopted by the Michigan Supreme Court in Kreski v Modern Wholesale Electric Supply Co, 429 Mich. 347; 415 N.W.2d 178 (1987).
In granting defendants' motion for summary
On appeal, plaintiffs claim that the trial court erred in finding that the fireman's rule precluded liability. We disagree.
In Kreski, 372, our Supreme Court defined the rule as follows:
We find that a police officer's injury resulting from a high-speed chase constitutes a foreseeable occurrence stemming from the performance of the
We are not persuaded by plaintiffs' argument that the rule does not apply because Officer McGhee was injured on a public street. We acknowledge that one of the Supreme Court's primary policy reasons for adopting the rule was that it would be an unreasonable burden on landowners to require them to prepare for the unanticipated arrival of police and fire fighters. Kreski, 368-369. However, the Court also held that the rule should not be limited to the landowner/occupier context and that it extended to negligence which caused the need for the presence of the police officers or fire fighters. Kreski, 374-377. See also Rozenboom v Proper, 177 Mich.App. 49, 55; 441 N.W.2d 11 (1989). Accordingly, we hold that plaintiffs are barred by the fireman's rule from maintaining an action against defendants and affirm the summary disposition.