We're not sure how widespread the practice is, but the option is apparently out there: Russian police have discovered companies on the Internet offering rides in "ambulance-taxis" through notoriously bad Moscow traffic. For roughly 6,000 rubles per hour – about $193 US, which doesn't sound like much for a wealthy Russian – the 'customer' will get to cut through gridlock in an ambulance with flashing lights and the proper paint scheme outside but a refitted, leather-lined interior.

Police say they've already stopped one ambulance with a "strange" driver that was found to have a bunch of people in civilian clothing in the back. The National Post reports that police have been told to keep an eye on the emergency-looking vehicles and to make sure they're actually being used for emergencies, which would appear to mean they're going to be tailing and perhaps stopping ambulances that are actually in the middle of emergency services. And that can't be good for anyone.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 2 Years Ago
      Ha, America's not perfect, but damn, the Russians don't even give a F about hiding their corruption.
        • 1 Month Ago

        They've got nothing on Americans  Remember the stories about rich people hiring people in wheel chairs to travel with them to Disney World so they could jump to the front of every line?

      • 2 Years Ago
      Jalopnik actually got it wrong calling the customer "mega-rich" as I recall. Really wealthy Russians legally outfit their luxury sedans and SUVs with emergency lights and siren. They also drive on sidewalks whenever they feel like doing it. Money can truly put one above the law in teh second and third world compared to somewhat limited (still nice) 1199 Foundation in California. Of course Russia and the rest of ex-Soviet countries have had similar "friends of police" clubs for decades.
      • 2 Years Ago
      In Jakarta rich folks can hire motorcycle police escort to do the same. It made but a little bit of difference through the city's notorious traffic jam, as people would give way (if they could) only after much insistent siren honking by the motorcycle police, and so they move just a little faster than the basically stopped traffic, basically slip past one car at a time, after many seconds persuading that car to give way. Ambulances? No one give way to those, which I often feel sad if I know they were carrying a real injured or sick person.
      • 2 Years Ago
      An ambulance in Moscow just sits in traffic like everyone else.
      • 2 Years Ago
      Just follow them, and if they stop... then inspect the vehicle.
      • 2 Years Ago
      What a dick move
      • 2 Years Ago
      Wealthy Russian don't need that. That just roll over pedestrians. No joke.
      • 1 Month Ago

      New money russians = worst people on earth

      • 2 Years Ago
      In Russia ambulance chases you!
      • 2 Years Ago
      rotten society they have over there.
        • 2 Years Ago
        not any better in the **** hole USA government owes you...Russians are free to do what ever they want!!!
      • 2 Years Ago
      Well i live here in Russia and yes we do have problems with our society but its only thanks to Freedom from USA that happened to my country @ 1993 ... oh yes you all will be like "What the f is he talking about? we made a world better without USSR!!" no you didn't .. you stupid country makes wars and world economic crisis nothing else... When i was born in USSR i had FREE health insurance, a place in a kindergarten( no waiting lines that stretch sometimes to about 5 years) schools that gave good if not best education, sports sections that could lead me to Olympic games, Country that had minimum poverty and minimum class difference because all where equal ( try that in USA ) no racism !!! Now alot of you will say i know that in USSR where Gulag and Siberian penal servitude ... what can i say as soon as USSR has gone take a guess who came to power from there? Yes .. its like opening a Pandora box ... so Please Americans and Europeans ( that probably forgot who saved them many times from their wars ) don't bother explaining me why Wealthy thieves are taking ambulances for a fast ride threw Moscow traffic.. P.S. - No hard feelings to all of you who had any negative ... you can minus me to death if you want. I lived in USA and i know that you all don't know jack about Russia... so Shush.
        • 2 Years Ago
        All bling and no class.
        • 1 Month Ago

        Respectfully, I think you miss the parts of freedom that are good. Choice, opportunity, equality, freedom of religion, the opportunity to choose your career, the right to have a voice and be heard without persecution and most of all, the rewards of your life's work going to you and your own family instead of a pre chosen dictatorship that absorbs it all to push their own agenda. 

        In the USA the agenda is chosen by the people, well, the ones that don't ignore their freedom and choose to have a voice.

        Even in the USA, it took time to be one and to have a common goal and yes even today there are differences but those differences don't prohibit prsonal opportunity to make change and don't mean you have to fight, if it comes to that, for ideals and ideas that you don't believe in.

        The USA, for those of us that choose to be part of the process, means we will protect each other, fight for the protection and freedom of others, give to those less fortunate and even cause a global ripple or two if it means that in the long run, peace will and freedom prevail.

        Honestly, and I say this respectfully, your comments remind me of those a battered spouse whom defends their spouse's abuse because he or she fears the change and the unknown road that will ultimately mean a happier and better existence. 

        Always remember friend, to break the chains of bondage, you might have to bleed a little. Even if you don't feel free afterward breaking the chains away, the next generation will.

        Peace, love, freedom and opportunity. - USA

          • 1 Month Ago

          Yes, the USA is peace, freedom, opportunity, and the right of local governments to take your house/property anytime without compensation.  Just keep watching dumbed down TV and saluting the flag; it will make you feel good until your property is gone.

        • 2 Years Ago
        STFU you commie bastid....under Communist Russia you wouldnt have the right to type that useless crap you just did. Every country has growing pains, where they work out the kinks. Your just a clown who enjoys being a sheep.
          • 2 Years Ago
          What a terrible lack of humility, unfortunately an all-too American trait. Don't you have any respect for someone who has more EXPERIENCE than you? Or did you live in the Soviet Union in the 40s-80s, too? Or maybe you were just spoon-fed a bunch of nonsense.
        • 2 Years Ago
        I understand your feelings toward America, and why you were fond of the USSR. The ONLY reason I will disagree is because I believe freedom of expression is more important than anything else in the world put together. The USSR and other socialist societies have always stifled it. The most tragic part is that they don't necessarily have to. There's no reason a nation can be both fiscally regulated and socially deregulated. America has a lot of problems--as an immigrant, I can see them in ways that are difficult for a native. But in spite of a society in which you can OPENLY let someone die of a chronic disease simply because they can't pay and OPENLY buy your way out of a crime by hiring an excellent but expensive legal firm and OPENLY accept millions of dollars from corporations and other special interests as a politician and OPENLY evade justice as a corrupt police officer for violations that would land anyone else in prison...America is worth it because it creates and cultivates a culture of free expression and communication that, by its very nature, is of the people. As for the ambulance issue, I think the police should offer to escort suspicious ambulances to the nearest hospital. This way, they will be assisting in actual emergencies and very easily catching the false ambulances...either they get to the ER and get caught or the ambulance doesn't follow the officer and gets pulled over.
      • 2 Years Ago
      Wouldn't the police already know if there was an emergency?
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