Blue Light Traffic Safety - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Blue Light Traffic Safety

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Fire calls have doubled in the past three years, according to Minot Rural Fire.

In order for volunteers to respond to those emergencies, they first have to navigate through traffic to get to the fire station.

But as Kelli Volk reports, getting them where they need to be takes extra attention from everyone on the road.

When volunteer firefighters turn on their blue lights it means they're on the go.

But as one Minot Rural firefighter points out...that's easier said than done.

(Mike Hyndman, Firefighter)"I've done it for long enough to where I can try not to get frustrate, you know. You just got to pick your times when you're going down Broadway and you have to take some backstreets in order to get to the station."

The blue lights are used to send a signal to other drivers on the road, that the firefighters are on their way to the fire station where they will then suit up, board the fire truck, and head out to the emergency.

But as Minot Rural Fire Chief Rex Weitikol explains, the blue flashing lights can often be misinterpreted by drivers.

(Rex Weltikol, Fire Chief)"A lot of people don't understand what the blue light is. Some of them think they're just a construction worker. Usually, those are amber lights. We run blue lights.

However, the blue lights do not grant special privileges to the firefighters.

They still need to obey the rules of the road while racing against time.

(Rex Weltikol, Fire Chief)"They still need to abide by the laws. We don't want them speeding. If they don't get here, they do us no good. We want them to get here safe. We would appreciate the people who pull over and let them by."

Pulling over to let them pass will help them help others.

(Mike Hyndman, Firefighter)"We're not going to get right up on you. We're just waiting for you to move out of traffic so we can get to...get to the scene."

In Minot, Kelli Volk, KX News."

Once again, when you see a vehicle with blue flashing lights, Weltikol says you should pull over.

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