Slow down and move over for emergency responders

Every day, our paramedics are on the road responding to calls. They respond to over 50,000 calls each year and they do an outstanding job with their dedication and hard work.

During Paramedic Week (May 19-25) and beyond, don’t forget to slow down, signal, move to the right and pull over when you see the flashing lights of an ambulance or any other emergency vehicle. Moving over and slowing down is so simple and it can play such a big factor in someone’s life.

Paramedics are in important and valued part of our health care system and community. They are part of the reason why Halton Region is a great place to live, work, raise a family and retire.

The following sections of the Ontario Highway Traffic Act apply to all emergency services.

1. When you see an emergency vehicle approaching with its lights on, slow down and move to the right as soon as it’s safe.

In an emergency situation, seconds could mean the difference between life and death so a clear, unblocked lane to the patient’s location is important.

2. When you approach an accident with emergency responders on scene, slow down and safely move away from the accident.

By moving away from an accident scene, we are ensuring paramedic and other emergency responders’ road-side safety and allowing them to focus on the medical needs of the patients.

Failure to comply with either of these laws could cost you significant fines and demerit points. Worse than that, failure to comply could have a negative effect on someone’s life.

The theme of this year’s Paramedic Week is “Health Care in Motion”. Let’s keep them safely in motion!

For more information about Halton Region Paramedic Services, dial 311 or visit If it’s an emergency, always dial 911.

If you have any Regional concerns or comments you would like to share, please feel free to email me at You can also find me on Twitter @garycarrhalton or on Facebook. To receive further updates on Regional issues, please subscribe to my quarterly e-newsletter, “The Carr Report.”