Traffic is Slowing Down Emergency Vehicles

JONESBORO (KAIT) With the growth of the city comes more traffic and more traffic congestion. This congestion and people doing more in their car besides driving is causing problems for emergency vehicles.

Battalion Chief Brett Winstead JFD, "It's not so much being ignored is that your attention is elsewhere. You got people texting on their cell phones. Talking on their cell phones. Listening to the radio reading newspapers all kinds of stuff."

It's becoming such a problem that the city is running a message on the local cable access channel.

Another problem could be the increased sound deadening in new cars.

One of the biggest dangers with emergency vehicles is at intersections. The NTSB calls it wake effect. What it is is that you focus on the emergency vehicle and may not see the cars following behind it or even another emergency vehicle such as a second fire truck following close behind.

Shawn Perrin with Medic One Ambulance says "For every accident that occurs with an ambulance at an intersection  there may be 5 wake affect collisions that occur after the ambulance has gone through that intersection."

By not yielding to an emergency vehicle it could cost you up to 5 hundred dollars and 90 days in jail.

It's not worth the fine nor the time and you could delay emergency help to someone you love.