Don’t panic at the sound of sirens

How often, when chatting amongst your friends, can you say you’re a cautious driver?

Cautious driving is about more than just having control over your vehicle – you have to be aware of your surroundings. This means you shouldn’t apply mascara while your car is stationary at the robot because you think its ‘safe’. It means that you should be alert and ready to move away from danger and out of any oncoming emergency vehicles’ way that might be trying to find their way past you. Be aware that accidents can take place when one might swerve out of the way to avoid an accident scene that’s already on the road or when way for an emergency vehicle that’s rushing to an accident scene.

Sirens of emergency vehicles send shivers down many people’s spines and can cause panic. Panicking is not a good option. It is important to remember that emergency vehicles need to make it to the scene as soon as possible – within the “Golden Hour” which could mean the difference between life and death for crash victims. This scenario leaves rescuers with only about 12 minutes to extricate the wounded and get them comprehensive medical care

So next time you hear emergency sirens, don’t panic or hog the road – make way and help them save the lives of those injured.

Here are five safe driving tips to help you deal with emergency vehicles on the road:

1.Do not panic! Identify where the emergency vehicle is coming from, and plan your next move.

2.Do not slam on your brakes. Stopping abruptly threatens the safety of not only the emergency vehicle, but also other road users. Maintain your speed and move out of the way as soon as you can safely do so.

3.Give way. If the vehicle is behind you, move to the left (where safe) and when the emergency vehicle starts to overtake slow down to let them pass. You are obliged by law to give way, so don’t hog the lane in defiance.

4.Keep focused. Many road users, when approaching the scene of an accident are distracted, causing rubbernecking and dangerous traffic situations.

5.Avoid making sudden movements. Once the emergency vehicle has passed, keep an eye on your rear and side view mirrors – there may be more response vehicles heading your way.

In some cases, when you are involved in an accident, you may not always be able to call for help due to injury or having lost your phone. Today’s road safety statistics mean that you simply cannot afford to go without car insurance or  MiWay’s Emergency Alert service! It can mean life or death if you have an emergency or a loved one was in peril, and need emergency services to reach the scene as quickly as possible.

 

  AUTHOR
Tameem Cajee
Journalist

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