trafficticketteam jason diamondI just hate it. This is not a blog about many clients who received traffic tickets for this, but it’s about common sense. Almost every day I see somebody do the following and it almost always causes an accident. When they are driving on a road with four lanes divided by a medium, and an emergency vehicle is coming the opposite way (on the other side of the road), people pull over to the right or slow down to a crawl. Let me be clear, the ambulance is coming the opposite way. There is a medium between the lanes, thus there is no way for the ambulance to come over to our side. Nor would it since we would have a head on collision, yet people slow down to a crawl or cross over three lanes to get all the way to the right. It just does not make sense. It’s just people not knowing what to do when they see an emergency vehicle. Their hearts are in the right place since they think they are being helpful. But their heads are in their rears since they almost always cause an accident. The same thing happens when they see a cop car with its lights on the opposite side of the road. Again, there is a medium between you and the cop, but for some reason, people decide to start driving 30 MPH under the limit when they see those lights. It is not what is required under the law and it is down right dangerous.

I am not talking about what you see in the picture above. I am talking a 6 or 8 lane road with a medium between the lanes of traffic. There is no logical way the cop or abulance on the opposite road can be affected by your driving, yet you stop. Or you move over. People just panic when the see those red or blue lights. Here is the law.

316.126 Operation of vehicles and actions of pedestrians on approach of authorized emergency vehicle.

(1)(a) Upon the immediate approach of an authorized emergency vehicle, while en route to meet an existing emergency, the driver of every other vehicle shall, when such emergency vehicle is giving audible signals by siren, exhaust whistle, or other adequate device, or visible signals by the use of displayed blue or red lights, yield the right-of-way to the emergency vehicle and shall immediately proceed to a position parallel to, and as close as reasonable to the closest edge of the curb of the roadway, clear of any intersection and shall stop and remain in position until the authorized emergency vehicle has passed, unless otherwise directed by any law enforcement officer.

Lets be clear, this does not apply to a cop giving someone a traffic ticket on the other side of the road 8 lanes away. This does apply to cops or fire trucks or ambulances who are trying to get to a scene. If you are in the way, or might be in the way, it applies to you. If you are not affecting the emergency vehicles, and can not conceivably effect them, don’t change lanes. I have been cut off so many times and every time it makes me crazy. In fact, if a cop sees you cross over 4 lanes of traffic in a dangerous manner and your excuse is that you say an ambulance on the other side of I95, he is going to give you a traffic ticket for reckless driving. So remember the following. First, don’t panic. Every red or blue light you see should not throw you into “OMG, what should I do mode”. First ask yourself if you can SAFELY move over. Second, do I need to move over. If the answer is no to either of these questions, don’t move over.

If you have any questions about this blog, please feel free to contact me, Jason Diamond, anytime. I offer a free consultation and can almost always respond to you immediately.

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