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City fire department gets traffic control system

Grande Prairie firefighters now have the ability to control traffic on their way to an emergency. Fire vehicles now have the hardware to pre-empt traffic signals, essentially giving them a green light until they clear an intersection.

Most will be automatically triggered as a fire truck approaches, but Transit Manager Robert Carroll explains some of the older traffic lights will only have the technology once they get replaced. Drivers shouldn’t notice the different as signals will still shuffle through green, yellow and red in the same amount of time.

Fire Chief Dan Lemieux says city hall wants their response time to emergencies in residential areas to be five minutes, so the system will help them get there in time and safely. The goal is to also get public transit buses on the system for when they’re behind schedule.

Below find a time lapse video of the 100 Street corridor between 132nd Avenue and 84th Ave in Grande Prairie using the pre-emption system.

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