3 Reasons Not to Stare When Driving Past a Car Accident

Image of Mundie's tow truck recovering a vehicle from an accident

Accidents happen. Millions of people drive every day and that opens the door for collisions to occur. From reckless driving to a flat tire, unfortunate roadside incidents happen all the time. But say you’re not involved in the collision directly, is there a responsible way to handle the situation as a passing driver? Picture this: you’re cruising down the road, following the speed limit and keeping your driving distractions to a minimum, when you pass a car accident on the side of the road. Of course, your instinct is to slow down and sneak a peek. However, this can be dangerous and inconvenient for a few reasons. Here’s why:

1.    Distracted Driving

While you may be trying to channel your inner Elvis, “rubbernecking” should be reserved for the dance floor, not the road. The term is most often used to describe drivers who slow down to observe an accident as they pass. This dangerous form of distracted driving takes drivers’ attention away from the road both mentally and visually. In fact, in some parts of Canada, distracted driving fatalities have surpassed those caused by impaired driving. Get to know more about impaired driving laws in BC. When you stare at an accident, you take your eyes and focus off the road and other drivers. This can cause you to veer into another lane, miss the flashing of brake lights ahead of you, and could result in another collision all together. So, it’s crucial that you keep your eyes ahead of you and resist the urge to stare at the accident on the road.

2.    Interferes With Emergency Vehicles

When there’s an accident on the road, emergency vehicles such as police cars, firetrucks, ambulances, and tow trucks need to be on the scene. However, if traffic slows down due to people rubbernecking on the road, these emergency responders can’t access the accident. Not only does this hold up traffic further, but this also prevents victims of the accident from getting the help they need. In these situations, every second counts. So, the next time you’re tempted to slow down and glance into the commotion, remember that someone’s life may be on the line.

3.    Loss of Control

When you’re in the driver’s seat, the vehicle moves with your eyes. This is one of the reasons why distracted driving is so dangerous. Have you ever been driving down the highway when a passenger yells and points at something on the side of the road? Could be a wild animal, cool landmark, or maybe just a scenic view. Whatever it is, diverting your attention to a spot off the road may cause you to unconsciously steer towards it. Not only does this endanger you and your passengers, but it also risks the safety of the people sharing the road with you. Now, imagine it’s an accident that takes your attention. The last thing the scene needs is a nosy driver veering into the accident. To ensure you stay in control of your vehicle, keep your eyes on the road, not the accident.

Final Thoughts from a Towing Company in Vancouver

We understand how easy it is to get distracted by an accident while driving. However, as a tow truck company that is often called to assist these types of situations, we know how important it is to avoid the rubbernecking temptation. Serving cities such as New Westminster, Burnaby, Surrey, Delta, and Coquitlam, our towing company in Vancouver can be at your side quickly to assist. For 24-hour towing and recovery services, contact our dispatch today!