Riggs Ambulance Service offered advice on what drivers and others should do when they hear a siren or see emergency lights.
Remember, the R-I-G-H-T thing to do:
React: Respond quickly but calmly. Scan all directions for more than one emergency vehicle. Plan your next move.
Initiate: Begin your move to the right. Use your turn signal. Try not to slam on your brakes or pull over suddenly and never run a red light to move to the right.
Gauge: Remember to safely gauge the distance between your car and the cars around you, and pull over as far right as possible. Never stop at a place that doesn't have enough room for you to pull over safely.
Halt: Stay completely stopped to the right of the road until the emergency vehicle has safely passed. Remember there may be more than one vehicle responding, so scan around before you merge back into traffic.
Tolerate: Emergency personnel only use their lights and sirens when they are needed to offer critical care and assistance. So please, pull over. It only takes a few seconds of your time. Someday you may be the one calling for help -- for you, a loved one, friend, or neighbor.
Other reminders from Riggs:
Crosswalks and roadsides: Be alert for pedestrians who may be in the crosswalk, or the edge of the road. They may be looking for the emergency vehicles, too.
Highways: Gradually brake to avoid losing control in loose gravel on the shoulder.
Pedestrians: Never cross in front of an emergency vehicle that may be stopped at a busy intersection waiting for another vehicle to pass.
Bicyclists: Pull as far to the right as possible to allow emergency vehicles to pass.
Founded in 1948, Riggs Ambulance Service is locally owned and operated and is the exclusive paramedic provider for all of Merced County.