The Highway Code states that you should move out of the way but not endanger other road users


Drivers are being warned about moving out of the way of emergency service vehicles, as doing so could land you in trouble with the law and a huge fine of up to £1,000.

Motorists are told to give way to emergency service vehicles such as ambulances, fire engines, police cars and emergency doctor cars, so how can it be that a fine can be issued for doing what drivers believe is the right thing to do?

Drivers could get into trouble for ending up in a bus lane, stopping in a yellow box junction or running a red light to allow an emergency vehicle to pass by when their lights are flashing – these are still classed as driving offences that are punishable even if you’ve moved out of the way for such a vehicle.

The Highway Code states that you should move out of the way but not endanger other road users

Driver Warning: Pulling over for an ambulance could land you with a hefty fine! © Copyright David Hawgood and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.


If you get caught running a red light you could be issued with a fine of up to £1,000 despite the fact that you’ve been moving out of the way of an emergency service vehicle to let it pass.

According to the Highway Code, motorists should be aware of such vehicles on the road but must never endanger other road users:

“You should look and listen for ambulances, fire engines, police, doctors or other emergency vehicles using flashing blue, red or green lights and sirens or flashing headlights, or Highways Agency Traffic Officer and Incident Support vehicles using flashing amber lights. When one approaches do not panic.

“Consider the route of such a vehicle and take appropriate action to let it pass, while complying with all traffic signs.

“If necessary, pull to the side of the road and stop, but try to avoid stopping before the brow of a hill, a bend or narrow section of road.

“Do not endanger yourself, other road users or pedestrians and avoid mounting the kerb.

“Do not brake harshly on approach to a junction or roundabout, as a following vehicle may not have the same view as you.”

To ensure motorists safely move out of the way for emergency service vehicles, GEM Motoring Assist came up with the Blue Light Aware campaign.

And whilst most emergency service vehicles flash blue lights when they need other road users to be aware of their presence, doctor’s vehicles flash a green light, however motorists must still try and assist them by moving out of the way safely.

Occasionally there will be times when an emergency service vehicle comes to a set of traffic lights on red with other vehicles in front of them but the driver knows that these motorists are not able to ‘jump’ the red light so will not activate their lights and sirens until it it safe enough for the vehicle in front to drive over the solid while line at the junction.

Sometimes, a uniformed police officer may be brought in to direct a motorist through a set of traffic lights on red.


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