Motorists can be fined under provisions of The Highway Traffic Act for failing to use caution when passing emergency or designated vehicles working at roadside. You must slow down to the following reduced maximum speeds, passing only when it’s safe to do so:
- 40 km/h on highways with posted maximum speed limits under 80 km/h
- 60 km/h on highways with posted maximum speed limits of 80 km/h or higher
If you are caught driving faster than the reduced speed limits, you could face a significant fine and move down the Driver Safety Rating scale.
An emergency vehicle, when responding to an emergency call, will sound an alarm and use flashing lights. The alarm may be a horn, gong, bell or siren. The lights may consist of any of the following: a flashing red light, flashing red and blue lights or alternating flashing headlights.
When an emergency vehicle (ambulance, fire or police), sounding an alarm and flashing lights, is approaching from any direction you must yield right-of-way by:
- immediately moving clear of an intersection if you are stopped for a red light or stop sign (If blocking the path of an emergency vehicle, you must proceed through a red light or stop sign with caution, to clear the way.)
- driving as closely as possible to the right curb or edge of roadway
- remaining stopped at the edge of the road until the emergency vehicles have passed
Note: On one-way streets, pull right or left to the nearest curb so as not to block the emergency vehicle.
Pull over and stop for emergency vehicles.
When passing a stopped emergency vehicle or other designated vehicle (tow truck or other roadside assistance vehicle, or vehicle used by government enforcement officers) that has its warning lights activated, slow down and proceed with caution, passing only if it’s safe to do so. When two or more lanes of traffic in the same direction are available, you must move to the lane farthest from the emergency or designated vehicle, provided it’s safe to do so. This applies to drivers on either side of an undivided highway.