ArDOT Explains What To Do When Stuck On The Interstate

NORTHWEST ARKANSAS (KFSM)-- The Arkansas Department of Transportation advised drivers Monday (Aug. 7) on what to do when they find themselves stuck on the side of the interstate.

This comes after the death of Heather Byars, who was hit and killed on I-49 near Lowell.

Danny Straessle, the spokesman for ArDOT said whether you are involved in an accident or simply have car troubles, do not leave your car.

“You want to stay in your vehicle," Straessle said. "You don’t want to get out, raise the hood and look to see what’s going on. The safest place for you to be is in your vehicle with your seat belt on.”

He said to wait for police and even after they arrive on scene, stay in your car if you can.

Some drivers said their instincts tell them to do something different.

“Hopefully try to flag down some help and get somebody to stop and help," Springdale resident Sarah Luper said.

"Pull over to the side, get out and assess the damage," Bella Vista resident Laura Carlsen said.

Carlsen explained she has been in a situation where she had to pull over and she did exactly what she said.

Straessle also said drivers need to be aware of secondary collisions.

He explained they are all too common on the interstate.

“You will have your primary accident and then as traffic slows down behind that accident and is maybe trying to get around that first accident one will happen further back in the queue of cars," Straessle said. "Somebody comes up on it too fast and doesn’t slow down, doesn’t recognize in time and impacts a vehicle at the end of the line.”

He said drivers need to know what is going on around them at all angles.

Even just a quick glance at your phone could lead to catastrophe for you and others around you.

Straessle said the best thing to do is stay focused when out on the road.