What is the process to register a vehicle for medical response purposes?



“I am a medical practitioner and do emergency medical calls and sometimes am called between hospitals depending on the situation and the patient. Of late I’ve been caught by speed prosecution cameras exceeding a speed limit which has prompted my question.

As we are not informed of the do’s and don’ts with regard to providing emergency care services, Is there a permit or licence which I may apply for to be able to exceed the speed limit under these circumstances where I need to go to another emergency medical unit? I.E. From the Union hospital to Milpark Hospital. If so, who do I contact and what documentation do I need to provide?”


Unfortunately I am not 100% aware of how the system would operate with private individuals using non-registered (emergency) vehicles. I can however provide you with an overview of what is happening in a private emergency service setting.

1. All of our vehicles have to be registered as rescue vehicles / emergency vehicles or ambulances with the department of transport

a. A vehicle can be registered as a specialised vehicle after it has obtained its normal roadworthy and license.

b. Once a vehicle is on the system, the vehicle will be fitted with an emergency warning system, etc. (An ambulance with a specialised conversion needs to have the SABS certificate of conversion ready as well.)

c. The vehicle will then be going through another roadworthy and listed as an emergency vehicle before it can be registered as such.

2. An emergency vehicle responding to a life threatening emergency will still be fined as per normal road users.

3. The fine will then be sent to the proxy of the company and support documentation must then be sourced to accompany the fine to the prosecutor or licensing department for consideration.

a. Vehicle tracking sheet – with evidence that the vehicle had the necessary emergency warning systems activated at the time

b. Emergency Contact Centre log – evidence that the vehicle was indeed dispatched to an emergency call

c. Vehicle Analysis Sheet or Electronic MDT report – evidence that the call was accepted by the vehicle in question with details of the crew on the vehicle during that time

d. A written report from the crew on the vehicle that they have attended an emergency

e. Other support documentation if requested

4. All of the support documentation will then be sent through and considered.

5. Should the prosecutor or traffic department uphold the infringement the staff will then be liable for the fine.

a. This happens quite often that the company needs to pay the fine or the staff member driving.

b. More often our staff need to go to court to appear for a magistrate, etc. to state why they have exceeded the speed limit, especially Bloemfontein.

c. The fine can be transferred from the company name into the staff member’s personal capacity.

i. This will happen if the speed limit was exceeded in the following conditions:

1. Speed exceeded 20km/h the speed limit in an urban area

2. Speed exceeded 40km/h the speed limit on a highway or rural area

I basically provide you with all this details as we as emergency services sometimes struggle to get fines retracted, even in emergency cases.

My suggestion would be to register your vehicle as an emergency vehicle and/or obtain a written document from the hospital/employer that you are a medical practitioner on standby for that facility. This document and other documents as proof of call out should always accompany your statement to the traffic department. The sad thing is it is not always guaranteed that the fine will be retracted.

I do hope this answers some of your questions.


Werner Vermaak
Communications Manager

Also view:

Emergency Medical Response and Road Safety

Info on Registration from Tshwane

According to my knowledge before a vehicle description can be changed on the eNatis system we will need the following to rest assure yourself that the vehicle has indeed been adapted as such :

  1. Letter of approval from the Board of Healthcare funders of South Africa

Lower Ground Floor , South Towers ,

160 Jan Smith Avenue

Office hours are from : Monday to –Friday (08h00-16h30)

0861 302010/011537 0200 /clientservices@bhfglobal.com


  1. Roadworthy certificate should be conducted
  2. Acceptable means of identification of the applicant /Business
  3. Photos of the vehicle after it has been  adapted vehicle .
  4. Weight bridge certificate , since the vehicle has been adapted we need to know what is . its weight in order to determine the license fees of the vehicle .
  5. Certificate copy of the Original vehicle certificate .
  6. CNV application form and a RIM form
  7. Proof of residence of company /applicant

These are what is required supporting documentation , when the application is done at the city of Tshwane office .I think the requirements might differ from town to town , I would advise the applicant to consult his registration authority for more information regarding the authorities requirements.

please note the application can take three to twenty one days to be processed .


6 thoughts on “What is the process to register a vehicle for medical response purposes?

  • March 19, 2012 at 10:03 am

    In terms of the road traffic act regulation 176(5) as a medical practitioner responding to medical emergency as a part of their bona fide work, may fit their vehicle with a single flashing red light – no siren!


    There is another method of obtaining permission, and that is to write to the MEC of transport requesting an exemption from the road traffic act in terms of section 81 (MEC may grant a road user an exemption from certain road traffic act regulations) such that they may then comply with sections 58 and 60 of the act.

    I have that exemption in my private vehicle used for medical rescue responses, where the MEC has granted our unit permission to be exempt in terms of section 81 and fit lights and sirens to our personal vehicles – However, the conditions are extremely strict.

    And in terms of the fining story – the best we ever manage is to get them reduced by 50%
    As far as i am aware, having spent many months trying to obtain the necessary permission, you may only register a personal vehicle as an emergency vehicle if you can register that emergency section to an organisation or company.

  • December 12, 2012 at 7:02 am


    wil net weet wat is die prosedure om ‘n “emergency vehicle” te registreer en waar in Middelburg of omliggende dorpe kan dit gedoen word

    Baie dankie

    Ina Claassen

  • October 2, 2013 at 6:30 am

    Ek is ‘n lid van die Hercules Gemeenskap Polisie Forum in Pretoria.Kan u my van besonderhede voorsien hoe my voetuig as ‘n Accident Responce Vehile (ARU) te registreer en wat is die kreteria waaraan voldoen moet word asb.Die doel is om ongeluks tonele by te woon en te beveilig.
    baie dankie.

  • November 23, 2014 at 3:41 pm

    Good day. Would like to know where or who could assist me with a permit for red lights and sirens . I am a basic life support technician and international fire figter 1. I would like to assist the community, ambulance service and the local RTI with fast response on fires and acidents. I have registered my business but all I need is a pirmit for the red lights and sirens that be able to respond to the emergencies. I am based between ladysmith and 35km from escourt .I feel that in my community its a need for quick fire and medic response but at the moment colenso is depending on ladysmith for that and in most cause the response is late. I know that sirens are not for playing thats why I want you to considered this as serious. Getting a permit letter for the lights and sirens would benefit ke in so many ways. Red lights are a hazard warning for people to know that there is a acident a head and should slow down. Perviously I responded on acidents for prewarnings ans almost ended up in a acident because I did not have the right lights. It’s the festive season and people arel travelling and ther will be a lot of acidents so I won’t be able to respond because I don’t have a pirmit for the red lights and sirens. Would u please tel me what steps I should take to get the pirmit. Reply with feedback on my email address (vrpjohannes@gmail.com) thank you.

Comments are closed.

Pin It on Pinterest