Thankfully for many of us, high-speed police chases are events viewed on television from the comfort of our couches. For others, a chase is something seen up close and personal. The bad news is that being caught up in the middle of a car chase can induce a feeling of panic. The good news is that you won’t be caught up for long.
If you see a chase approaching you, there are ways you can react to keep you safe. Here are a few tips to follow should you find yourself in this harrowing situation.
1. Drive Predictably
One of the most dangerous things you can do is to drive erratically. The natural reaction of most people is to veer to the shoulder and get out of the way. Imagine if you are on the highway and every driver in your lane tried to get to the shoulder at the same time. Not only is it hazardous, but it’s close to impossible.
Instead of applying your brakes and moving over, maintain your lane and speed. The police chasing the suspect are aware of the speed limits, and they are looking to not only get their suspect, but to keep others on the road safe. Staying in your lane and maintaining a consistent speed is a predictable behavior that can be anticipated by the police and allow them to react appropriately.
That said, if you find yourself in a direct path of pursuit and have enough time and room to move, do so.
2. Don’t Help
You’ve seen it on television and in movies. An ordinary citizen sacrifices their own vehicle and safety to help the police stop a suspect. You aren’t in a movie and the police would prefer that you stay out of the way and safe. If someone is running from the police, chances are high that they won’t give a second thought to ramming your vehicle. The best thing you can do to help is to stay out of the way.
3. Don’t Stop
One urge that you should quash is to stop in the middle of the road. You may think that you are making it easier for police to get around you, but you are making yourself an obstacle in the road. If you can pull over safely to get out of the way, go ahead. If the only place you can come to a stop is in the middle of your lane, don’t do it.
4. Keep Focused
You may find your attention being diverted to the chase instead of the road ahead. Pull your focus back and remember that you are still driving.
Chances are high that you will never be caught up in a high-speed pursuit, but you may find yourself in that small percentage of people who find themselves smack in the middle of one. If you do, follow the tips above to keep yourself and your passengers as safe as possible.
If you are involved in a car accident in Charlotte, reach out to our team of car accident attorneys for a free consultation. We will go over the details of your accident with you and advise you of your legal options.