#8216;Rubbernecking#039; can lead to serious accidents as well

Published 12:00 am Saturday, April 15, 2006

Last Friday, a suspect led Greenville law enforcement on a car through downtown Greenville striking several vehicles in his attempt to flee justice.

The suspect, Kenneth Ray Hill of Brundidge, ultimately wrecked his car, blocking Highway 10-West to traffic.

While workers were moving in to remove Hill's vehicle, which set squarely in the center of the highway, police signaled to oncoming cars and trucks that they would have to turn around because officers were still conducting their investigation.

Many drivers, acknowledging the police's presence, turned their cars around as they were directed and headed the opposite way. Others stayed put, feeling the need to know why they were being misdirected.

On Saturday, an accident claimed the life of a Pennsylvania college student on I-65 southbound. While traffic on the southbound lane was entirely blocked because of the severity of the accident, the northbound lane was clear for travelers to continue. But because of the need to &#8220rubberneck” or see what was going on or had happened, there was a significant congestion.

While it is basic human nature to be curious, in certain situations, such as accidents or police chases, it is important to remember the old maxim, &#8220curiosity killed the cat.” Straining your neck to see what is happening, takes your mind away from what you truly should be concentrating on: namely, driving defensively to insure you, or someone else, doesn't suffer the same fate.

So the next time you approach an accident on the highway, obey orders from public safety officials and remove yourself from the scene as quickly and safely as possible. Police, state troopers and sheriff's deputies are already working one accident. They don't desire having to work another.