The Michigan State Police Alpena Post, and the City Fire Department is explaining the use for unmarked cars after a number of concerns and questions.
According to MSP Trooper, Ashley Simpson, and Fire Chief, Forbush if you see an unmarked vehicle, in most cases it is a volunteer fire fighter, first responder, or EMS, leaving another place of work or responding from home to help with a scene.
Using the Michigan Vehicle Code, first responders, and volunteer fire fighters are allowed to use unmarked vehicles.
“Here in Alpena County, majority of our local township fire departments are volunteer only so they’re responding from home or their place of work or from a family event. So they’re allowed to have those emergency lights on their personal vehicles to allow them to get to the scene and be able to help in whatever situation they’re dealing with,” Simpson said.
When you see an unmarked car with their emergency lights on you must slow down, move over to the right and stop. However if the volunteer firefighter, first responder, or EMS team member does not have visible emergency lights and are using their 4 way hazard lights on the car then they have to follow the same rules just as anyone else on the roads.
“The correct action to take is to pull to the right and stop, and make way. Emergency vehicles are trained to go left, because the public is by law to go right. So we shouldn’t be passing you on the right therefore you shouldn’t be moving left. Don’t turn in front of them; don’t pull in front of them. Pull as far to the right as possible and assume they are going to pass you on the left.
That’s what we’re trained to do and working together we can all be a lot safer and it will work great,” Chief Bill Forbush said. Chief Bill Forbush stresses the pull over rule to make sure more accidents don’t happen.
If you have additional questions about the unmarked rescue and fire vehicle rules don’t hesitate to contact the city of Alpena Fire Department or the Michigan State Police Alpena Post.