Sault Ste. Marie Paramedics are now driving their first ambulance with the new red and blue flashing lights rather than the familiar red and white.
The change is due to a July 1 amendment to the Highway Traffic Act, which allows ambulances and fire trucks to use flashing red or blue lights. Previously, only police were allowed to use the blue lights.
Research evidence supports the change to blue and red as more noticeable and potentially safer flash pattern then previous designs. Though similar to police vehicle lighting the flash pattern and light, the wavelength has been designed to be less distracting and quicker to catch a driver’s attention.
One noted advantage is when driving in rain or snow conditions the ‘flash back’ to the paramedic driving is less.
What remains the same is the requirement for drivers to pull over to the nearest curb and stop when approached from any direction by an ambulance with its emergency lights activated