just wondering what people would recommend for warning lights. I drive a 2006 Baja, I have a dash light but think that I would need more, I need to cross one or two 'major' roads and the town i'm a volley in doesnt allow sirens. and suggestions?
As a volunteer EMT in NJ for the past 17 years, I've learned a few things that I did not give much thought to when I got into EMS. One of the biggest is that driving to calls can be really dangerous, particularly in a POV, and particularly to a true emergency, when your concentration may not be totally on driving the car.
I've seen a volunteer EMT in an adjoining town strike and kill a child on the way to a call, in broad daylight. I've seen members of my own agency crash on the way to EMS calls. I've read about an provider in south Jersey responding to a call in a POV. I am also familiar with the 'blue light culture' (for the lack of a better term). It seems pervasive in younger providers, particularly male.
While blue-lights have their place in POV's in emergency services, I would advise against crossing any 'major' road and would use caution when crossing any minor road. When you come to a major road, shut it off and wait for the light to change in your favor, then proceed cautiously. Even if it's a true medical emergency call, you won't do a bit of good by causing a wreck on the highway. Not only will your crew not be able to respond to the initial emergency, but who's going to come out and scrape you or the people you injure off the highway?? Something to think about....
i'd have to agree with this. ive been a volunteer in nj for the past 5 years. ive seen members of my own town wreck and and up paralyzed cause of using emergency lights in a pov. i personally would recommend using something 360 so every1 can see you at intersections.
Whatever you choose make sure you are seen for 180 degrees in front of your vehicle. Ask others what they have
and then put it to the test. Park the vehicle in a driveway and light it up. Then go drive past the driveway in another
vehicle. If you cannot see the light it is WORTHLESS. Do this in different lights, the worst case being bright sunlight.
Does your state allow flashing headlights? These wake up people who seem to not notice the courtesy light.
REMEMBER, the lights do NOT grant you a license to violate laws. The light is a courtesy so people will
allow you to pass to get to the firehouse, incident or ambulance. Some departments have strong reprimands
for abusers and will not allow members to use lights in certain ways. Find out the history of your dept. as well!
I personally like the old teardrop light. It is inexpensive, can be seen very well and has lasted me 10 years so far!
If you have nothing but money(and it is allowed), consider the pancake lightbar for the roof. Low wind drag and
high visibility are a big plus in some rural areas!
Good luck in finding a light that will fit your needs and budget!
Dolph, I currently have an Whelen Slim-Miser LED Dash Light on my front dash. I'm trying to figure out whether or not I should get a strobe pack in my head/tail lights or should I go for something else. below is a link to see what my car looks like.
Let's see, I've got 4 amber lights on each corner that either flash one side at a time or all four at a time. I've got a set of rear facing red lights that are controlled by a pedal and a switch as well as a set of rear facing white lights that's controlled by the gear shift. In the front of my car I have 2 sets of forward facing white lights that are controlled by a switch both in terms of intensity and on/off. What other lights does one need on their POV?
In the great state of Minnesota, technically the only flashing lights you can use on a POV are yellow and white towards the front. The headlights can not flash and you can not have a flashing red light unless your vehicle is registered with the state as an emergency response vehicle. You can have 1 3" round non-flashing red light facing forward below the dash level on your vehicle. Personally, I know of a few responders in my area that use yellow/white visor led strobes but I don't see the need for one. I have a yellow strobe ($10.00) on top of my truck which I use for responding with, but I also use it for snow-plowing! :)
Sirens are also not allowed unless it is a state-registered ERV.
I seem to be agreeing with most of the others here - emergency lights (and siren) are for emergency response vehicles, not POV's. Bear in mind, also, that most states do NOT allow the use of lights without a siren. On top of that, what would your insurance company say about using your POV as an emergency response vehicle? You may be able to affod a light from Galls, but can you afford the (certain-to-be-increased) insurance premiums?
I would recommend getting a set of strobe lights one for each of your front & rear lights this gives you almost 360 degree coverage and can be seen day and night. It made a big difference after I put mine in with the existing red warning lights.
My personal experience, sometimes no lights at all are just as effective. mainly because with or without them you are probably going over the legal speed limit. And with that, just turning on your hazards can work just as well. The company I work for has a very strict no Red Light policy, meaning under no circumstances will they condone you to exceed the speed limit in your personal vehicle with red or blue lights operating. They will allow amber, but you must be stationary and not moving will they are lit. Also in the State of Wisconsin, the law in regards to lights and sirens is very clear, cut, and dry.......Irregardless of whether you are a police car, ambulance, fire truck, or authorized pov. If you are moving and your lights are flashing, you must also have your siren on.
When I used to be in a volunteer department my biggest concern was if the lights I had on my vehicle made me adequately visible when I was parked by the side of the road at an incident. Like a lot of the folks here have pointed out, flashing lights on a POV, particularly without a siren is a bad idea going down the highway. It doesn't effectively get you to the scene/station that much faster and it gives you a false sense of security trying to pass other vehicles and clear intersections.
One of the catch phrases I use for my new folks that applies here is "it doesn't do any good to get halfway there really fast"
Just wondering what state you live in. Indiana allows a green light for EMS but you must have a permit issued by the state. I wonder how your insurance company feels about the light you have and the fact that you are using your POV as an emergency response vehicle. Why not try responding by following the traffic signals and traffic laws in your state?