Four die as woman stops on highway after flat tyre
Four people were killed when their car rammed into a 4×4 parked in the middle of the road on Sheikh Zayed Highway after it got a flat tyre. Normally we don’t report on accidents caused by the ignorance of people, but we figured we’ll take a look at what you should really do when you get a tyre puncture on the highway.
This accident could’ve been easily avoided. After a woman stopped her 4×4 on the third lane of a 120 kph road, she simply stepped out of it. According to Emirates 24/7, a driver who was passing through that area earlier apparently had also warned the woman to instantly take her car off the road but she did not listen.
Minutes later, a compact car with five passengers of the same family crashed into that vehicle after its driver was caught off-guard by the presence of the 4×4 on the road. The hit was so powerful that it pushed the 4×4 nearly 40 metres down the road. The 4×4’s owner was not hurt as she was standing outside the car. Four in the other car died, and one seriously injured. Among the dead, there was a 9-month-old baby.
Now we’ve actually come across this type of daftness several times, and had to swerve out of the way to avoid an accident, after quickly checking our mirrors in a split-second to make sure we ourselves didn’t run into another car. Keeping a safe distance from the car in front is very important here, as the driver in front will be suddenly swerving away too.
But what about when you yourself get a tyre puncture? When you hear the boom, don’t panic and don’t hit the brakes. Just ease off the accelerator pedal gradually and start moving towards the right side of the road while indicating your intentions. This is not the time to be worrying about damaging your alloy wheel.
About five years ago, back when we had limited means, my brother was driving his 1987 Toyota Supra Twin Turbo on the fast lane of Sheikh Zayed Road at 120 kph, he realised he had a flat tyre when the tailgating moron behind him started to back off. There wasn’t even a noise of any sort, but the car started feeling odd, so he simply pulled off to the hard shoulder, gradually easing off the pedal, stopped in a safe manner, called his buddies, got a lift with the perfectly-fine wheel to a place selling cheap Chinese tyres, came back, installed it, and off he went. Never had a flat tyre since then. At the time, I never instructed him to do any of this beforehand. He just used his common sense.