Saturday night while heading back home on El Camino, we heard a squad car coming up behind us so I pulled over and it zipped past swiftly. I commented on how fast it was going because normally they don’t seem to be going terribly fast when I’ve had to pull over in the past. A couple of blocks up ahead it became clearer why. At the intersection of El Camino and Escuela we noticed a situation that was clearly recent. There were already a couple police cars there, but there was also still a man lying on the road next to a car and no ambulance yet in sight.
After arriving home we decided to walk down the street to see what had happened. By the time we got there, there were two firetrucks, an ambulance, and many more squad cars. The man was situated in the ambulance and they took off with the sirens blaring not long after we arrived. We never found out what happened, but we had a couple of theories including the man being struck while crossing the street against the light or feeling ill (perhaps having a heart attack) while driving, stopping the car in the road, opening the door and collapsing. The police were interviewing two people on the median near where the man was, but it was not clear if they were just witnesses or if the car belonged to them.
On the way to the scene we were debating whether it was ethical to take pictures. I feel pretty strongly that it is not unethical to take pictures of the scene as a whole, but what about the person who has been injured? Since he was already in the ambulance I didn’t have to make the decision, but if he weren’t, what would I have done? Do you think it’s ok to take photos of someone who has been injured without their consent? If so, why? What if you plan to post them on the internet? Please respond if you have an opinion, I’m interested in diverse opinions and rationale. I’d like to know reasons, for or against it, that I likely haven’t considered.