“Just slow down”: Driver-behaviour frustrates at grass fire

The Kangaroo Flat Fire Brigade is calling on motorists to slow down when passing emergency vehicles with lights on.

Firefighters were called to a roadside grassfire in Crusoe Road about 5pm yesterday, but despite flashing lights and a “slow” sign, motorists continued to travel above 40km/h.

Fourth lieutenant James O'Brien said the brigade positioned its forward command vehicle and a member with the sign ahead of the crews working to warn drivers to slow down.

But he said, despite this, motorists continued to travel through at more than the regular signed speed limit, putting members at risk.

“I would safely say 70 per cent were not going 40km/h,” he said.

The controversial rule that requires motorists to slow to 40km/h when passing a stationary or slow-moving emergency vehicle with its lights on was introduced in July.

It was met with mixed reactions but also raised questions about the short notice given to drivers before it became law. It was announced by VicRoads on June 19 and came into effect less than two weeks later.

Mr O'Brien said the goal at every call out was for members to return home safe and unharmed to their families, their jobs, or whatever they were doing prior to answering the emergency call.

“Regardless of whether you agree with the law, it’s still the law – there for the safety of our members,” he said.

“Just slow down.”