Recently, we were honored to host a series of training courses for local First Responders in the area. Throughout the week, 134 individuals gathered to receive advanced training in topics such as mass casualty, hazardous materials, new technology, and more. It was a small way for us to say “thank you” for the hard work and sacrifice our local heroes put forth to keep us safe and secure.
Another way that we as a community can show our appreciation is to observe basic safety guidelines when we encounter emergency personnel.
Change Lanes. When you see an accident, a traffic stop, or another situation on the side of the road, it is important to move over safely before you arrive at that point. Use your signal, of course, and slow down. One of the most dangerous parts of the job is moving traffic, especially if drivers are rushed or distracted.
Be Aware. Loud music, cell phones, and passengers can all be distracting. It is important to be in a position where you are able to hear approaching sirens and see the lights that warn you of emergency vehicles. Limit distractions as much as possible in your every day driving, so that you’re ready for the unexpected.
Get Out of the Way. It is not only the safe thing to do, it is the law. When an emergency vehicle is approaching, it is vital that you slow down and pull over to the side of the road. Remain at a stop until it is safe to get back on the road. Remember that emergency responders usually follow one another, so keep an eye out for the next vehicle. We also recommend being courteous to other drivers who have yielded. Maintain a safe speed and let other drivers back in as it is possible. Whipping it back onto the road and zooming away won’t save that much time, and it may just cause another accident.
Follow instructions. When there is an accident or other emergency event, the first responders need bystanders and passersby to do exactly what they are told. It’s tempting to stop and ask questions, try to find out what’s happening, or rush around the scene. However, that could increase the danger of the situation and delay the aid offered to those involved in the accident.
We are so thankful to all of the first responders in our area and beyond. It was such a pleasure to host these fine professionals for training. We encourage you to express your thanks as well!