Valley Fire Departments Allow Advertising On Their Trucks and Ambulances

Valley Fire Departments Allow Advertising

If you live in Apache Junction or around the Daisy Mountain/Anthem area you may have noticed that fired departments allow advertising  on their trucks and ambulances.  Local fire districts and departments, especially those in the outlining part of the valley, are in need of funding.  Thus they have turned to advertising.   However, unlike city buses and other municipal vehicles, the fire departments will only allow “appropriate” advertising for first responders.

So the obvious question is how long until valley residents see their local fire department’s truck with a law firm advertisement on it?   For personal injury law firms, it would seem an ideal advertising possibility.    Two issues come to mind.  First, would the State Bar of Arizona consider such advertising ethically permissible?  Likely there is no ethical prohibition.  The Bar regulates Lawyer advertising by content and in some cases the manner in which a lawyer can advertise.  However, as it stands the ethical rules and the Bar do not prohibit advertising on public buses.  Regarding the second, if the government entity decided not to allow say a personal injury law firm to advertise on a truck or ambulance, that prohibition arguably violates the First Amendment.  While State or Federal Government can legislate the time, place and manner of speech, they cannot regulate the message.  So while a Fire Department may not find such advertising as suitable, I do no think the First Amendment allows that department to refuse to advertise a personal injury law firm.