One of the most important parts of approaching an intersection is the view. It is important for the driver of an emergency vehicle to take the time to clearly see the intersection and the immediate hazards. The driver should ask for the right of way rather than demanding it because an emergency vehicle is not always as noticeable as it might seem. Studies show that while 96% of pedestrians hear sirens well enough to identify the direction of travel, only 24% of motorists can do the same.
Drivers of emergency vehicles should make sure they are seen. Having an approach and intersection system is key to safety. This video illustrates the On Q system for intersection safety. Drivers should be aware of their surroundings all the time and not be distracted.
Drivers should be aware of their surroundings all the time and not be distracted, but when approaching the intersection this is even more important and in an urban environment it becomes a continuous situation. Part 1 of a 5-part series that provides useful information on negotiating intersections for emergency responders. Part 3 of a 5-part series that provides useful information on negotiating intersections for emergency responders. The driver of the emergency vehicle and his officer are responsible for its safe operation at all times.
The use of sirens and warning lights does not automatically give way to the emergency vehicle. Emergency vehicle drivers and company officers should make every effort to make their presence and planned actions known to other drivers, and should drive defensively to be prepared for the unexpected or inappropriate actions of others. The following video provides examples of drivers disobeying traffic laws and putting emergency equipment safety at risk. While this may reduce the response time of an emergency personnel, the benefit of increased security is worth the increased response time.
Preparing for pedestrian and driver ignorance will help you stay safe and on track to provide assistance in the emergencies you are targeting. When it comes to emergency responses, intersections can be considered the most dangerous area on roads. The correct position of an emergency vehicle is vital for the driver to be able to see and be seen at an intersection. Do not move your emergency vehicle until you and all passengers are safely seated and wearing a seat belt.
The emergency response does not exempt the driver or the company official from any responsibility to drive with due caution.