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Split off from "strobe lights in personnel vehicle " in Ask a Cop

I am starting by answering some questions raised in the other post.

1. " Is the training in emergency vehicle operations part of a legitimate curriculum?"

yes, in the case of EMT's the curriculum is specified by the Mass OEMS based on national standards by the NTSB
in the case of firefighters curriculum specified by the Mass Firefighting Training Committee base on standards by the NFPA

In both cases the training is in regards to emergency apparatus (not POVs) but does provide exposure to rules of the road, defensive driving concepts , etc.

This assumes that the instructors follow the curriculum.

Now having said all that I agree with others that some sort of addittional training should be mandated prior to issuance of a "red light" permit.

2. "Right of Way"

Yes, chap89 sec 7 gives the right of way to members of a fire dept responding to an alarm in their POVs with red light flashing. Yesterday, I skipped over that and went directly into how I address this topic when I teach which I will try to clearify:

While the law grants the ff right of way, in practice right of way can not be taken it must be given! The driver of a emergency vehicle(or POV) must be alert to the other vehicles on the road and confirm that the operators are aware of the emergency vehicle and are in fact yielding. If the driver of the emerg veh. does not do that, then regardless of the law there are going to be two vehicles trying to occuppy the same space and "that ain't going to work"

3. " rules of the road"

Chap 89 sec 7B has be "legitimately" interpeted NOT to include POVs. I say legitmately, as in citations being issued and upheld in court, as opposed to some ff's who think they just got a license to drive at Indy.

I think the problem here is that the police do in fact look the other way in the name of "good relations" with their local FD.

In the community I live in, the Police Chief laid down the Law to the Fire Chief of the call dept. a number of years ago. Guess what happened?

a. There was NO measurable change in response time.(The ff's who were driving like maniacs to get to the staion were in fact just having to wait for the the others to arrive in order to roll anyway)
b. there have been NO accidents during response
c. Th firefighters and EMT's still have good relations with the Police officers.

Training should be in rules of the road and defensive driving, NOT high speed operation which shouldn't be happening anyway.
 
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