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Fire engines can legally run red lights and make unauthorised U-turns from Jun 1

Fire engines can legally run red lights and make unauthorised U-turns from Jun 1

File photo of SCDF vehicles and equipment.

SINGAPORE: Fire engines, red rhinos and fire-medical vehicles responding to emergencies will be allowed to legally run red lights and make U-turns at non-designated junctions from Saturday.

The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) said in a news release on Friday (May 31) that this is an extension of its move in December 2017 to provide the same exemptions for ambulances responding to emergencies.

"In a medical emergency, every minute saved can improve health outcomes for the patient," said SCDF.

Motorists are to give way to emergency vehicles even if the lights are in their favour. (Illustration: SCDF)

Officers operating emergency vehicles under the exemption order are bound by SCDF's operating procedures.

"For example, a driver of an SCDF emergency vehicle who intends to proceed past a red light or make a U-turn at a non-designated junction is required to sound the siren and activate the blinker lights to alert road users," the news release said.

"When approaching a traffic junction, the driver must slow down and come to a complete stop so that an assessment of the traffic situation can be made before proceeding further," it added.

SCDF said other road users must give way to emergency vehicles.

"This can make a real difference in saving lives," it added.

Motorists should do the following upon hearing the siren or seeing the flashing blinker lights of approaching SCDF emergency vehicles:

  • Remain calm and check the direction of the oncoming emergency vehicle.
  • Give way by signalling early and filtering towards the left if it is safe to do so.
  • If unable to filter to the left safely, slow down to let the emergency vehicle overtake you from the left.
  • Do not obstruct, outrun or tailgate an emergency vehicle as this can endanger yourself and other road users.
  • At a traffic light junction or intersection, slow down and give way even if the lights are in your favour, if it is safe to do so.
  • Do not break traffic rules (eg drive through a red traffic light) in order to give way to an emergency vehicle.
Source: CNA/jt(aj)

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