June 25, 2020

Bedford Hills Fire Department is Now Alerting Through Safety Cloud®

(Originally released by Bedford Hills Fire Department)

Drivers in Bedford and Westchester County can now receive real-time digital alerts when fire engines are active nearby through a new service equipped on Bedford Hills Fire Department apparatus. Safety Cloud by HAAS Alert protects firefighters and improves driver compliance with Move Over laws by sending real-time notifications to drivers approaching active fire apparatus en-route or on-scene. The service, which was installed on all five BHFD apparatus last month by Hudson Valley Fire Equipment, reduces the risk of drivers colliding with fire crews in the field and improves awareness for all drivers by adding a digital component to lights and sirens.

Drivers can receive the alerts through the Waze navigation app, available on mobile devices and in the dashboard of many newer-model vehicles. HAAS Alert is working to expand the alerts to other services and vehicles so that all drivers can receive these critical road safety alerts. Statistics show that vehicle collisions and struck-by incidents are the second leading cause of line-of-duty death for firefighters. A surge in collisions, injuries, and deaths even led the International Association of Fire Chiefs to announce a safety and survival alert last year urging action on this issue.

Bedford Hills Fire Department protects nearly fifty miles of local roads including Interstate 684 and the Saw Mill River Parkway. Fire crews routinely respond to incidents on and alongside roadways, sometimes working just inches away from traffic traveling at a high rate of speed. Even though New York Move Over laws require drivers to slow down and move one lane over when approaching active emergency vehicles, many drivers still react slowly or fail to move over. Safety Cloud alerts give drivers up to 30 seconds of advance warning to help solve this problem.

"We’re proud to be the first department in New York to equip this service on our vehicles," said Bedford Hills Fire Assistant Chief Alexander Dennett. "This service connects and protects our crews in the field and the drivers around them by giving motorists extra time to see us, slow down, and move over safely. Waze is a free-to-use app, so this is a great way for drivers to get advanced warning of our presence when we’re actively responding.”

For more details on our Safety Cloud installation, read our announcement last month. For more information on HAAS Alert, visit www.haasalert.com.

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