Operators of Motorsport Rescue Units and Stage Safety Units have today been advised that they must now display additional signage to comply with recent changes required by the EU Lighting Directive (76/756/EEC), s.41 of the Road Traffic Act 1988 and the Road Vehicles Lighting Regulations 1989, as amended.
Motorsport UK's Yearbook (the Blue Book) stipulates in Appendix F – Emergency and Medical Services (Units and Equipment) – that rescue vehicles should be clearly marked “RESCUE” and carry blue flashing beacons. Similarly, Stage Safety Units should be marked as such and have amber flashing beacons.
For both types of vehicle, the flashing beacons must be visible 360° with low mounted high-intensity units at the rear.
The Department for Transport have expressed concern about the current setup of motorsport emergency units, saying that because modern lightbars have clear plastic lenses, it is impossible to know whether the lights will flash blue or amber until they are turned on.
They have therefore advised that to maintain compliance with recent legislative changes and also to help the public recognise emergency vehicles when the lights are not flashing, Motorsport Rescue Units and Stage Safety Units must now carry additional wording. The lettering must be in red reflective vinyl and be at least 125mm high, and state the word "AMBLULANCE" or "AMBERLANCE" depending on which colour lights are fitted to the vehicle.
Motorsport UK's safety director Joe King has circulated a notice about the required changes from Faliya d'Sprool, head of the Department for Transport's conpliance division.
SMMC's Committee have already discussed the implications of the change and have agreed that the new requirement will be phased in for all of our vehicles on or before 1st April 2022.