Emergency services have released a compilation video of bad behaviour highlighting the number of drivers in Auckland who fail to give way to emergency vehicles travelling with their lights and sirens on, especially on the city's motorways.
Police Inspector Scott Webb said ambulances, fire engines and police cars need to get to emergency situations fast so it’s crucial motorists move out of the way as soon as possible.
However, he added, while most people know what to do and let emergency vehicles pass, some people aren't getting the message.
"We see it every day where people don’t give way, take far too long to do so, or stop in the middle lane or the fast lane.
"Sometimes, drivers aren't checking their mirrors or have their music up too loud so are completely oblivious to the fact we’re behind them trying to get through traffic.
"When it comes to responding to emergencies, every second counts, lives are often on the line, so we’re urging people play their part and pull over for our vehicles."
Fire and Emergency New Zealand's Assistant Area Manager Stephan Sosich and St John Assistant Director of Operations - Field Operations Tony Devanney mirrored the concern saying "those extra seconds can make all the difference".
What you should do to make way for an emergency service vehicle:
- More as far left as you can as fast as possible.
- Check your mirrors regularly, every 15 seconds which means you’ll have plenty of time seeing the approaching vehicle to move.
- If you’re listening to music in your vehicle, it pays to have it at a volume where you can still hear sirens.
- If you can hear sirens but can’t tell where they’re coming from, pull over to the left in a safe place and wait at the side of the road.
- If it’s not safe to stop, slow down and keep as far left as you can.
- Once the emergency vehicle has passed, check the road is clear before you pull back out into traffic.