• Handpicked Harrogate

Giving way to emergency service vehicles

With North Yorkshire Police

Precious time lost getting there could mean the difference between life and death and one of the biggest problems we face when reaching incident scenes are the motorists who panic at the sound or sight of the sirens and blue tone horns.


Stay alert to approaching emergency vehicles and when you hear the sirens or see flashing lights, try to locate the vehicle and consider the route that it may take. Once you have assessed the situation, take any appropriate action to let the vehicle pass but be careful to still follow any traffic signs or rules of the road.

If you notice an emergency vehicle approaching you, it is important to stay calm and to not brake suddenly. This could slow the progress of the emergency vehicle, and put yourself and other road users in danger.

If your circumstances allow you to pull over to the side of the road, indicate beforehand and keep an eye out for pedestrians and cyclists. Do not pull over on or near to a hill, bend or narrow section of the road and do not mount the kerb unless necessary.

If you are about to emerge from a side road or are approaching a roundabout, stay where you are until the emergency vehicle has passed.

If you are travelling on a dual-carriageway or motorway, move over to a nearside lane by signalling your intention and merging with vehicles already there.

If you are on a road which has double white lines, and the line nearest you is solid, maintain a safe speed and do not exceed the limit until you can safely pull off the road or wait until the white lines change priority, or end, then find a place to pullover.

Emergency vehicle drivers are specially trained and have exemptions to the law that you don’t have, so you must not go through red lights or speed to allow them to pass.