To make safe decisions about the speed, the route and the location to attend, drivers should be provided with accurate and timely information about the incident or event. Personnel should understand how their fire and rescue service classifies emergency incidents versus non-emergency events, and respond appropriately.
If travel to the incident is delayed or aborted, or if there any safety concerns about the routes being taken by fire and rescue service vehicles, the fire control room should be notified. They can take appropriate action to send alternative resources to the incident, or ensure that resources use alternative routes.
Incident commanders should determine the safest routes for attending vehicles and the availability of holding areas. This information should be communicated to the fire control room so that attending resources are able to make a safe approach.
The incident may impact on making a safe and controlled approach to the incident, for example smoke may obscure the driver's vision. Therefore, the potential for incident spread, changes in cordons or a change of wind direction, should be taken into account when identifying suitable approach routes and holding areas.
Use of blue lights and audible warning devices
In addition to standard vehicle lighting, blue lights and audible warning devices should be used appropriately to improve road safety when driving to an incident. Fire and rescue services should determine the appropriate use of blue lights and audible warning devices for emergency incidents and non-emergency events, and drivers should comply with their service’s guidelines policies or procedures.
It may be necessary for all emergency responders to avoid the use of flashing lights and audible warning devices when attending certain types of incidents or events, for example if there are animals present.