Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Ambo warning: Get out of the way

An ambulance driving with lights and sirens was held up in Deniliquin last week by a driver hogging the road.

January 10, 2013 4:50am

Deniliquin NSW Ambulance Service has issued an important reminder to motorists to move out of the way of emergency vehicles.

It comes after an ambulance with lights on and sirens sounding was seen trying to negotiate around two cars towing boats on Davidson St late last week.

Deniliquin NSW Ambulance Service station manager Bob Crampton said whether it’s an ambulance or another emergency services vehicle, motorists should make every effort to get out of the way.

‘‘It’s important that when we activate our lights and sirens, that you make way,’’ Mr Crampton said.

‘‘The best thing to do is to slow down and then pull over.

‘‘Oncoming traffic should also pull over as early as possible, which also alerts drivers in front of the ambulance.

‘‘We know that with sound proofing and radios, if people don’t look in their rear vision mirrors they don’t see us coming up behind them.’’

Legal penalties do apply for failing to let an emergency vehicle pass or failing to give way to an emergency vehicle.

Deniliquin Police Highway Patrol Sergeant Peter Kirk said it can attract fines of $397 and a loss of three points from your licence.

‘‘At this time of the year, airconditioners are on, windows are up and radios are on, which make cars virtually sound proof,’’ Sgt Kirk said.

‘‘But it is a requirement under the act that drivers be aware of the environment around them. They need to be checking their mirrors constantly.

‘‘So having the radio on will not be accepted as an excuse.’’

Mr Crampton stressed that ambulance lights and sirens were only used in emergency situations, and said someone not giving way to an emergency vehicle could be putting lives at risk.

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