Firefighters need your help
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Indiana House Bill 1208 and signed into law on March 27, 2002 by Governor Frank O'Bannon, also known as the Indiana Blue Light Law allows volunteer firefighters to use blue emergency lights on our vehicles when responding to an emergency call but we are prevented from operating a siren or exceeding posted speed limits. When these lights are in operation we are simply asking other motorists to move over for us although they have no legal obligation to do so. This current law is common among many states however there are states out there that allow for red lights and sirens and have had great success. The current law is antiquated and provides no safety for first responders or the citizens that need us to arrival quickly, 69% of firefighters nationwide are volunteer and the only difference between paid and volunteer is a salary and paid firefighters are always at the fire station working shifts, the training is exactly the same as required by the state and the National Fire Protection Association. Volunteer Firefighters do not get paid and when the calls come in we are likely to be home, grocery shopping, at work or any other normal activity in life, but when the pager goes off we have to stop what we are doing, drive to the station and get in our gear and get in the fire trucks, naturally this takes more time to get to the scene of the call. With advances in fire protection systems and design less than 10% off our calls are fire related while the majority are medical and accident related in which seconds matter with lives in the balance. The majority of citizens do not even know what the blue lights mean and many just don't pull over because they know they do not have to and lives have been lost because of it. We ask that lawmakers help us do our jobs by making sure we can get where people need us in a timely manner, modify the law to include sirens and exceeding posted speed limits with due regard, after all we are the very same people driving the fire trucks with sirens once we get to the station, you can afford us the respect and compassion to make sure we get to the station in time.
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