Yield Right of Way to Emergency Vehicles

There are quite a few things you need to take care of while driving along the roads. In addition to respecting the traffic rules and observing the speed limits, you need to yield the right of way to emergency vehicles as well. The laws pertaining to this particular case may differ slightly across different states but the bottom line is more or less the same – you need to acknowledge their presence and drive around them carefully in order to avoid hindering their progress.

The emergency vehicles may use lights – red, blue and/or white – in addition to sirens in order to attract the attention of nearby drivers. It is important to keep in mind that while the emergency vehicles and their drivers may be exempt from certain traffic rules, you most certainly are not. You should therefore drive reasonably and responsibly even while giving way.
Check in with the local rules and regulations to find out which vehicles are considered as an “emergency vehicle” in your state. Universally, police vehicles and ambulances are unarguably given this status!

What are Emergency Vehicles?

Emergency vehicles are those that are allowed by the law to break a few traffic rules in order to reach their destination quickly. These include police cars, SWAT vehicles, bomb disposal squad vehicles, fire trucks, ambulances and other similar vehicles. The nature of these jobs explains why reaching their destination in a timely fashion is of such importance. This is why you need to yield right of way around these vehicles so that other lives can be safeguarded.

What is the “Right of Way”?

The “Right of Way” is a Driving Code to be followed by drivers all across the country. It states that if there is an emergency vehicle following your car – and you can establish it to be an authentic and qualified emergency vehicle – you need to give it space by shifting lanes to the right most. Once the vehicle has passed and is a significant distance ahead of you, you can resume your position of the fast lane if required.

In case you see a stationary emergency vehicle standing ahead on your lane, analyze the situation. Is there another lane on the road you can shift to in order to pass the obstruction? If yes, do so but make sure you reduce your speed while passing by the vehicle. If not, you need to reduce your speed significantly in order to prepare for braking. Generally, the emergency vehicle lights can be seen flashing from a distance of over 400 feet. If there is an alternative road you can take towards your destination, it is your best option.

Every Second Counts!

It is important for you to realize the importance of every passing second – especially in the case when an ambulance is driving behind you. A moment can decide whether the patient will make it or not. At the same time, it is equally important for you not to panic! Stay calm and act responsibly – it is all that is required of you!