They waste precious time and put firefighters' lives in danger. Drivers who simply stop for a fire truck may think they're doing the right thing, but could actually be making matters worse for rescuers.
You hear the sirens, and you see them coming. But if you just stop in your tracks, that could really make things dangerous. When they stop, they usually got a lane to the left or the right and you don't know which way they're gonna go or if they're gonna stop dead, said Fire Engine driver Jim Bain. You either have to go left or right to go around 'em.
We caught up with one driver who did not get out of Bain's way. "I mean I just stopped until he went around, but was I supposed to do something else?" asked a driver we'll call Katie. When you see flashing fire engine lights in your rear view mirror, you don't just want to stop, you want to pull over to the right and stop. If we can flow with the traffic and the correct traffic patterns, it's alot safer for us than to have to go in oncoming traffic lanes, said Bain.
But to get around Katie and another driver, Bain did have to face oncoming traffic, something he considers a last resort. Going into oncoming traffic is dangerous, and we do it as slowly as we can and as few times as we can, said Bain. He notes the pullover rule stands.. no matter what side of the road you're on. Pull to the right at all times, he says. Following that rule makes Bain's life-saving job easier... and safer.