Codiac RCMP are installing new high-tech sirens in some of their vehicles that will not only be heard, but also felt.
The Rumbler intersection-clearing system emits low frequency tones that penetrate solid materials, allowing motorists and nearby pedestrians to feel the sound waves as far away as 50 metres or more, Const. Damien Thériault said in a release.
"The decision to go to this technology was made with officer and public safety in mind," said Thériault.
"We do have cases where people say they didn't hear the siren until we're immediately behind them. This piece of equipment could save lives and prevent serious injuries."
Two of Codiac RCMP's vehicles in the Greater Moncton area are already equipped with the Rumbler system and new vehicles will also be equipped with it as they are put into service, said Thériault.
It's a first for New Brunswick, he said.
The system, which can be paired with most emergency sirens, has been used by other police forces across North America for several years, he said.
It consists of an amplifier, with a built-in timer and two subwoofers. The built-in timer allows the tone to sound for eight seconds and then automatically shut off, Thériault said.
"Basically you feel vibration like you would from a bass, like a very low bass from a sound system," he said.
The lower pitched rumbling siren accompanies the higher pitched siren most people are accustomed to hearing.
Moncton area resident Justice Hamzat heard the new siren being demonstrated on Tuesday as he was walking by.
"I think it's more efficient. It sounds really good," he said. "If they have to do their job, it has to be done, and whatever they need to get it done needs to be provided to them."
Thériault says RCMP will only use the new sirens occasionally.
"It would only be in situations where we have multiple vehicles that are not moving for emergency vehicles," he said.
"It is not something that we would turn on automatically, or that we would use on a day-to-day basis in every situation. It would only be in a case when people are not noticing us."