Delphi Police Department Encourages Drivers To Yield For Volunteer Firefighters

The Delphi Police Department released information regarding the Indiana laws surrounding traffic safety in the presence of volunteer firefighters responding to an emergency.

According to the Delphi Police Department, volunteer firefighters responding to an emergency in their personal vehicles may display flashing blue lights, but Indiana law does not require drivers to yield the right of way for the flashing blue lights. However, the Delphi Police Department posed a question for drivers in the community.

“Would you want other motorists to yield the right of way to flashing blue lights if your house was on fire or your family member was having a medical emergency,” the department released. “Thank you to the Delphi Fire Department for your selfless service to our community.”

According to the Indiana Code regarding the lights utilized by volunteer firefighters, the lights must be placed on the top of the vehicle, on the dashboard of the vehicle with a shield to prevent distracting the driver or on the front of the vehicle on the bumper or at bumper level, but no more than four blue light assembles may be displayed on one vehicle. As well, the blue light may not be part of the regular head lamps displayed on the vehicle, and the volunteer firefighter must obtain a written permit from the Chief of the volunteer fire department to use the blue light and must carry the permit at all times.

Beyond the specifications of the blue lighting and what drivers may look for to follow the Delphi Police Department’s statements, the code reads “this section does not grant a vehicle displaying blue lights the right-of-way under IC 9-21-8-35 or exemption from traffic rules under IC 9-21-1-8. A driver of a vehicle displaying a blue light shall obey all traffic rules.”

The code further clarifies that the section may not be construed to include the vehicle as an official emergency vehicle.

The Delphi Police Department commented that yielding the right-of-way for the volunteer firefighters is a sign of respect for the service, but the department further emphasized the requirements for the installation of blue lights for drivers to be aware of those falsely displaying the lights and deter those seeking to utilize the lights without following the guidelines of Indiana Code.