A lot of people are fascinated with emergency vehicles. As children we often dream of being firefighters and driving the big, loud fire truck. That’s not just a dream though. Many children grow up to be firefighters, ambulance drivers, and more. Learning to drive an emergency vehicle is a skill all to itself, and if you’ve thought about wanting to become an emergency driver, we’ve got a few tips to point you in the right direction.
Just like normal driving tests, your ability to operate an emergency vehicle will be determined by your physical condition. You need to be able to see, understand, and react to obstacles on the road without endangering your passengers or other drivers on the road. In order to meet these qualifications, you will need to pass physical tests to ensure you are not in any way physically impaired.
Physical impairment could fall under bad vision, weak muscle control, inability to focus, slow response times, and more. This is not an exhaustive list, but it should give you an idea of the physical condition you need to be in to operate an emergency vehicle. If you feel that you don’t meet some of these conditions or might have difficulty operating an emergency vehicle, consider consulting a qualified trainer for the best next step.
Just like all fields of emergency medical service, you need training to operate an emergency vehicle. For most emergency service jobs learning to drive an emergency vehicle is part of the complete course training, but for those who are strictly interested in being an emergency vehicle driver there are specific courses.
These courses cover topics like emergency driving requirements, emergency vehicle characteristics, emergency vehicle driving dynamics, and more. Depending on where you take the course, they might be shorter or longer, or have different requirements. The goal of these courses is to teach all emergency drivers how to meet different state and federal guidelines while operating a motor vehicle, and how to respond in different situations while driving the vehicle.
As mentioned, emergency vehicle training will be a part of other emergency services field training, so if you’re interested in driving an emergency vehicle but also want to be an emergency services worker, speak to a supervisor or course instructor.
Surprisingly, your age is not as important as you might think. There are benefits to both younger and older drivers operating emergency motor vehicles. Younger drivers will be able to react and adapt to new situations faster, while older drivers will have more experience and knowledge of how to act before a situation occurs. This means there is no roadblock for you becoming an emergency vehicle driver if you’re younger, but consult your course supervisor or trainer.
Motivation and Desire
While they might seem inconsequential, your desire and motivation to drive an emergency vehicle will influence your ability to do so. As an emergency vehicle driver you are responsible for your passengers, patients, and other drivers on the road. How you handle your responsibility will impact everyone around you, so trainers will evaluate your ability and desire to perform these functions.
If you’re truly interested in driving an emergency vehicle, seek out some courses or give us a call. We can direct to the right resources and MedStar might be a great fit after you graduate from your coursework.