May 12, 2021

A Public Service Message from Heard Co. Fire and EMS (08/22/16)

img0037What to do when an Emergency Vehicle approaches

Drivers should always be on the lookout for emergency vehicles. In modern cars with air conditioning and stereos, drivers may not hear an approaching emergency vehicle.

Often, police agencies, not wanting to warn a prowler of their approach, will respond with lights only and no siren.

  • In your lane — If an emergency vehicle is approaching in your lane, pull over to the right edge of the roadway and clear an opening. Seconds count in an emergency situation and any delay could be deadly to the persons requiring aid.

  • In the opposite lane — If an emergency vehicle is approaching in the opposite lane, be prepared to slow or stop if the vehicle needs to turn into your lane.

Following Emergency Vehicles

Most states have laws prohibiting any vehicle from following within 500 feet of an emergency vehicle. Some states also have laws prohibiting entering a city block where emergency vehicles are stopped with their lights flashing to prevent interference with the work being done.

Move Over Law

Between 1999 and 2009, more than one emergency worker per month was killed while aiding a motorist by the side of the road. As a result, 47 states have enacted some form of a “Move Over Law.”

These laws require motorists who are approaching an emergency vehicle on the side of the road with its emergency lights flashing to move over into the opposite lane.

If you are unable to move over you should slow down, in some cases to 20 mph below the posted speed limit. Studies show that most drivers are unaware of these laws but police agencies are enforcing them by issuing tickets to anyone who does not move over or slow down.

Treat any vehicle with flashing red, blue, or amber lights as an emergency vehicle and give them room to do their job.

Thank you for your support,

Heard Fire and EMS


  1. Robert Montgomery says

    Give your a savior a chance to save! You might be the reason the people live! Dang sure don’t want to hurt the savior!

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