What must you do when you see blue and red flashing lights behind you? What must you do when you see blue and red flashing lights behind you?

  • A. Speed up so you're not holding the emergency vehicle up

  • B. Slow down and move to the left

  • C. Slow down

  • D. Pull over and stop

    The correct answer is D
    If, as you are stopping, the police car overtakes you and continues on its way then you don't need to come to a stop.

What to do when a vehicle with blue and red flashing lights is behind you

If a police car is following you with its lights flashing it may be that it is on the way to an emergency, so you should pull over as soon as possible.

If it is following you specifically then you may have committed a traffic offence such as speeding or using a cellphone, or you have performed a dangerous or inconsiderate manoeuvre such as not indicating, pulling out in front of someone, or deliberately losing traction, or the number plate of your vehicle has come up as stolen or wanted in relation to a crime.

While police vehicles have red and blue lights, ambulances and fire engines only have red lights. 

This lighting is called emergency vehicle lighting. It can also be used to make other drivers aware of a hazard when stationary. 

Emergency vehicles often have flashing headlights to augment the emergency lights.

On police vehicles a small arrow board is often included between the lights to direct vehicles.

LED-based lighting is the most popular type of lighting as it allows the light bar to be much narrower than with the old style of lights (and hence more aerodynamic). The lights can also be included in the vehicle's windscreen, which you'll see in unmarked police vehicles.

Blue lights are only used by vehicles that have the authority to pull you over. These include police, customs officers, fisheries officers and marine reserve officers.

Select language

Suggested for you

    All languages