Back Print

Ask Mr. Answer Person: Can you remind readers of the rules of the road regarding emergency vehicles?

Posted: Thu, Apr 6, 2017 3:49 PM

(Ron e-mails: "I met an oncoming ambulance recently and pulled to the shoulder, but the cars behind me did not. How about a service reminder about the rules of the road when meeting emergency vehicles?")
Mr. Answer Person says: "We'd be happy to remind people of Iowa's traffic rules!  Here--directly from the Iowa Department of Transportation--are the rules which apply: You must yield the right-of-way to a police vehicle, fire engine, ambulance or other emergency vehicle using a siren or air horn, and a red or blue flashing light. Pull over to the right edge of the road, or as near to the right as possible, when you see or hear an emergency vehicle approaching from any direction. Follow any instructions given over the emergency vehicle's loudspeaker.

If you are in an intersection, drive through the intersection before you pull over. However, if you are on a street or highway separated by a median strip and the emergency vehicle is on the other side, you do not have to stop. You must stay at least 500 feet behind any emergency vehicle using lights and sirens on its way to an emergency."