Social Question

stevenelliottjr's avatar

How come people love to stop to watch car accidents?

Asked by stevenelliottjr (295points) April 26th, 2010

I was driving to work today and passed by a horrible accident. The car was overturned and it didn’t look good for the driver. However, the guy in front of me actually stopped his car and got out with his iPhone and was taking video or pictures of the scene… I couldn’t believe it! Why do some people just get off on seeing other people’s catastrophes?

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15 Answers

chamelopotamus's avatar

Its terrible I know, and I pride myself in being the guy who keeps driving, hopefully at 10 MPH instead of 5 MPH, since the people driving by the accident after the traffic jam are the only ones who can get the show on the road

thriftymaid's avatar

I don’t care if they stop; I care that they slow down to 5mph to look.

njnyjobs's avatar

He probably was going to send the video to some news desk for a reward or renumeration.

ParaParaYukiko's avatar

I know it’s terrible to think that people like to look at other people’s misfortunes… But when it comes to car accidents, often they cause huge traffic jams. After waiting for some inconveniently long time in traffic, it’s natural to want to look and see what caused the hold-up in the first place.

But stopping and getting out of the car to take a picture? That’s a bit over the top in my opinion…

Coloma's avatar

If I witnessed something that obscene, little old pacifist me might have to break my own code of conduct and smack that camera across the road along with it’s disgusting owner.


Haha's avatar

Because some people love to not mind their own business. Bleh.

LuckyGuy's avatar

It’s primal curiosity. Haven’t you watched any nature shows? Even antelope will watch lions eat the poor sap they just caught.

Haha's avatar

worriedguy has some reason there.

ParaParaYukiko's avatar

Good point, @worriedguy! Seeing other people’s hardships is a way of reaffirming that your own status in life needs to be treasured. It’s better to have to wait an hour in traffic than to be the poor people who just totaled their car and possibly been seriously injured. It’s also better to have to constantly run away from lions than to be eaten by one.

partyparty's avatar

My father was killed in a car accident, and I was actually offered photos of the accident!!!
I still remember this nauseating person even to this day.

Trillian's avatar

Some people are just lacking something in the character department. Since summary execution is denied us, shunning seems the only logical option to me.

nebule's avatar

….but @worriedguy we are human moral beings…not antelopes… and just because it might be primal doesn’t make it right and @ParaParaYukiko there are other ways in which we can enlighten ourselves about hardships (like going to help out at a homeless centre or volunteering for a couple of hours in the the local A & E)... but we don’t…. it’s sensationalism and it sucks

Supacase's avatar

I think part of it is the shock. Yes, we can volunteer to help those less fortunate, but we have prepared ourselves for that. A terrible car accident reminds us that it could easily be any one of us at any minute.

mollypop51797's avatar

RUBBER NECKING!!! Hate it! Do people find pleasure in others’ misfortunes? Well, I don’t. And when I have to get somewhere, I don’t want to be held up by those who just need do see, and are dying to see this horrible accident! I think 2 or 3 people are enough. It doesn’t take a brain surgeon to dial 911 for that person! I especially hate it when the police have to move us over in 1 lane.. so not only are we merging, but we’re slowing down to look at the accident too! However, I do want to just see if the person’s okay, unless there are people already there.

chamelopotamus's avatar

@lynneblundell that is the truest answer! I love that answer

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