LAFAYETTE: Johnston Street Cash Video
After viewing the video of the crash on Johnston Street, I am reminded of how important it is to stop and help if you witness an accident.
I some other countries, it is illegal to NOT stop if you are one of the first few vehicles at a crash scene. I think that, in Germany, the first 3 vehicles at the scene must stop and render aid.
A lot of people just don't want to get involved, which, in reality, is not very neighborly.
Take, for instance, a crash I was involved in years ago. I was on Pinhook, turning from the turn lane into a business near Southpark Road. There was an elderly lady waiting to turn out of that parking lot, and she turned directly into my vehicle. She was clearly in the wrong.
One person stopped to see if we were okay, and we both were. I should have asked him to stay and give a statement to the police, but I didn't think that the lady would lie. Little did I know that her husband was an insurance salesman.
She used the phone in the grocery store to call her husband, and he arrived within minutes, before the police.
When it was time to give statements, our statements didn't match up: hers said that she was stationary and that I turned into her, and it also said that her husband was her passenger and witness to the accident.
The officer decided to believe two mature adults instead of the young guy. I wish that I would have told him to run the plates on the "extra" car in the parking lot, but I was too shaken up to think clearly.
Needless to say, I had to pay for the damage to his vehicle and mine (deductible; the insurance paid the rest, but still), it was a few thousand dollars out of my pocket.
My point is this: even if there are no injured people for you to assist, your statement could make the difference between a just outcome and someone getting false blame.
In the situation with the crash on Johnston Street, the video shows that the Sprinter van was clearly in the wrong, but it also shows that there is a likelihood that a medical incident caused the crash.
In any event, if you witness a crash, please take the few minutes to fill out a police report as, again, it's the neighborly thing to do.
Kudos again to Brandon Comeaux, the driver of the vehicle with the dash camera that recorded the incident. Not only did he have his eyewitness account to give police, he had video evidence. Great job, Brandon; we need more citizens like you!