Listen up on the road, you may need to move over for emergency crews


HEMSI, the city’s ambulance service. (Photo: Claire Aiello/WHNT News 19)

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – We rely on emergency vehicles to help us when we need it, but sometimes maneuvering through the traffic to get to us can be difficult.

Huntsville Emergency Medical Services Inc., or HEMSI uses dual siren heads and a really loud horn on their vehicles.

Spokesperson Don Webster said the goal of the sirens is to give people a heads up so they can move over.

HEMSI uses a digital system that transmits a low hum. “We have always had the high pitch with the whelps, now you have that low base type of situation and it really gets the attention,” Webster explained.

Webster said first responders encounter people on the road not paying attention, which makes it difficult for them to do their job. “Let’s face it distracted driving is a problem. People are going to have their cell phones and talking on them. Cars are built quieter, too. They have more insulation and the doors are sealed better. People can’t hear.”

He said they train drivers to be on the lookout.