Why Didn’t Anyone Stop?

Last night I was driving back home from the office and witnessed a car accident. A lady in a cavalier two cars ahead of me wanted to turn left and didn’t yield to the oncoming traffic. She ploughed into an old camaro and although everyone walked away, both cars could be totaled by the insurance companies.

I was the second car behind the cavalier and saw the collision, the person between us obviously saw what happened and the driver behind the camaro must also have seen the accident, but I was the only one who stopped.

I’m still stunned that the guy at the gas station who only heard the collision, a passing nurse (and her husband) and myself were the only people who stopped to bear witness and help. I can only figure that people did not want to stop because their dinner was getting cold, they were late for an appointment, or they had fears of being caught up in a law suit for trying to help.

Once the cops arrived on the scene and took over directing traffic, I gave my statement and contact details. The cops thanked me and seemed grateful that I had bothered to stop.

If you witness an accident, please stop and help. Even if it’s to move something out of the road, help open a car door, or just be there for someone to talk to. If someone you were close to were involved in a car accident, you’d want someone to stop and help them right?

4 thoughts on “Why Didn’t Anyone Stop?

  1. Reuben,

    No one stopped for a very simple reason, which in psychology circles is called the “bystander effect”.

    The bystander effect states that the more people are in an area, the less likely any one is to respond to an emergency situation. Think of it in terms of each person has a percentage of the total responsibility to act. The more people present, the lower individual percentage responsibility each person feels.

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