Why you should pull over for emergency vehicles - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Why you should pull over for emergency vehicles

CAPE GIRARDEAU COUNTY, MO (KFVS) -

It's not a scenario that's new for drivers: You're traveling down the road when an ambulance pulls up behind you with lights and sirens on.

But you may be surprised by how most drivers react.

Or rather, as first responders said, most drivers don't react.

Around 8 out of 10 drivers won't give that ambulance room to move around; and it's a complaint that resonates with police officers and fire fighters as well.

Think about it this way: That's 80 percent of drivers who don't obey one of the most basic rules of the road.

Cape County Private Ambulance Operations Manager Sam Herndon said it happens everywhere.

Herndon also said an ambulance will only use lights and sirens if it's a serious patient.

There are a few cases, however, when drivers may not have an option to move.

"And the recommendation is always, if you can get out of the way safely by making a right hand turn that's great, but if you can't you can always just wait," Herndon said. "You don't want to cause a secondary accident at an intersection by blowing through a red light just because there's lights and sirens behind you."

Here's what drivers should do if they see an emergency vehicle coming.

Slow down and pull over into the right lane.

If you're at an intersection, try to get out of the way as much as possible to let them pass.

Herndon added some of the problem may be distracted driving, people who are too consumed with their cell phones to notice an emergency vehicle approaching.

Copyright 2015 KFVS. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly