We often see emergency vehicles on the road blazing through traffic such as ambulances, fire trucks and police cars. They have their sirens on and their lights. They even use hand signals to direct traffic and some of them even have police motorcycle escorts. But what if you have your own real emergency? Let’s say you need to go to a hospital or if you need to save someone or something. You’ll most likely drive very quickly to your destination.
I’ve had my fair share of emergency situations wherein I had to drive quickly. I drove while I was having a severe asthma attack. I rallied towards the emergency room that day. I had my mom with me and we arrived safely since it was still early in the morning and there were only very few cars on the road. There was no time to waste so I took it upon myself to drive. In situations where there’s no choice and time is of the essence, here are some driving tips that could help you lessen the risk of having an accident and at the same time drive quickly.
Make sure you make others aware that you are in an emergency. Turns your lights on especially the hazard signal since you’ll most likely drive faster than usual so that people will know that you are in a hurry. Use your horn and use it in advance. Do not blow your horn as soon as you’re about to enter an intersection. Do it a few meters earlier. This will notify the vehicles that you’re about to enter the intersection so that they can give way. Use hand signals in addition to your signal lights. This will show how urgent you are and it will assist in telling other cars where you are going.
Be aware of pedestrians. Based on my experience and from the people that I know, to those who do not own cars or haven’t even driven one, they usually don’t know what the lights mean. A lot of pedestrians are hard-headed and would not let you through especially if you’re in a private vehicle.
Take advantage of straight roads. If it’s clear and there are no cars on either side, go speed up but do not lower your guard. Slow down if there are incoming vehicles. Also, stay on the center lane. Staying on the outer lane is more likely to be risky since there may be people, parked cars and debris on the side of the road. You have more room to maneuver if you’re on the center lane.
Focus on driving safely but offensively while on the road and not on the situation. It’s quite hard to think about an emergency situation but you can’t do anything while you’re in the car. Think about it later when you get to your destination safely.
Being late at an appointment or to work or school is not an emergency. You should not act like you are in a real emergency if you’re just trying to beat the clock so you can show up and log in early. Accept the fact that you are late. Don’t risk yourself getting into an accident as well as involve everyone else along your way. But if you’re in a real emergency, drive offensively but safely and if possible, just seek help from emergency personnel for transport. Let the pros handle it for you.
Wikipedia – Emergency Vehicle