HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) — Do you know what Texas law requires you to do if an emergency vehicle is behind you with lights and sirens blaring?
All in all, Houston police want to make sure you’re making the right move.
ABC13 asked the Houston Police Department about what drivers should do if they are caught in the middle of a police chase. HPD would not talk specifically about chases, but officers broke down what drivers should do when any type of emergency vehicle is rushing behind you.
“The first thing that you need to do is yield to that emergency vehicle, pull over to the right, come to a complete stop, and let that passing emergency vehicle continue on its way,” Senior Officer Bullock said.
Officer Bullock stressed that it is important to make sure it’s safe to move to the next lane. If you’re on the freeway, make sure it is safe to slow down enough to move over and come to a complete stop.
He also strongly discouraged drivers from tailgating behind emergency vehicles after they have passed.
“Don’t do that because you don’t know when or where that emergency vehicle is going to stop. Obviously, you want to give a great deal of distance behind those emergency vehicles,” Bullock said.
ABC13 asked what drivers should do if they are at a red light and are sitting at a crowded intersection.
“That officer or the fire truck at that point is instructing you to proceed with caution so you can, if you have to, make a right turn,” Bullock said.
Officer Bullock also wanted to remind drivers about the Move Over or Slow Down Law. It applies to emergency vehicles but also the Texas Department of Transportation’s vehicles, tow trucks, and utility service vehicles.
If they are stopped on the side of the roadway with their lights flashing, you must drop your speed to 20 mph below the posted speed limit. If you can’t get over otherwise, drivers need to move out of the lane closest to the emergency vehicle on the side of the road.
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