NORTHWEST ARKANSAS (KNWA/KFTA) — Since the start of November, there have been 24 vehicle accidents on Interstate 49 between mile markers 50 and 91, according to the Arkansas Department of Transportation’s Construction and Travel Information.
These crashes have occurred in Washington and Benton counties. Of those accidents, 20 have happened while drivers are traveling southbound. Nine of those wrecks have happened prior to 9:30 a.m. and 11 have happened after 5 p.m.
Keith Lindley, a detective with Tontitown Police Department, said there are two key factors that can limit the number of accidents on the interstates.
“No. 1 is slow down,” Lindley said. “No. 2, get off your phone. It’s really easy to get distracted when you’re in bumper-to-bumper traffic and it sneaks up on you in a moment’s notice to where you’re going to be coming up on a wreck. You don’t know when that traffic’s just going to suddenly stop.”
Lindley said if you witness an accident, the first thing you should do is check on each driver’s health.
“That’s the No. 1 thing is to make sure that those drivers and passengers and anybody that was involved in the collision is OK,” Lindley said. “If they need medical attention then we want that to happen sooner rather than later.”
If you are involved in an accident, Lindley said you should try to move your car off the roadway if possible. He said determining who is at fault in the accident isn’t the top priority in an accident, but can still be decided if cars are moved to the interstate shoulder.