ASP Reports Fridays Most Dangerous Day to Drive

June 15, 2006 - Posted at 6:28 p.m. CST

JONESBORO, AR -- Summer time drivers are creating more highway traffic in Region 8 and understandably more serious accidents on the roadways. But what are the danger spots in Region 8 and what can drivers do to avoid them?

"I was in a big wreck, that one last October, down here where the trailer came off on Stadium and went through the cab on city truck," said Scott Lane, "I was driving that."

Lane is lucky to be alive. He was airlifted to the Med in Memphis after a trailer hit the sanitation truck he was driving. But he says most accidents can be prevented.

"It's people not paying attention, talking on their phones and mostly, just all of them acting like they've got their minds on something else," said Lane.

We caught up with Lane at one of the most dangerous intersections in Jonesboro...the corner of Caraway Road and Nettleton Avenue. Last year, there were 41 wrecks reported here.

"A lot of people think that it has to be icy or rainy to have accidents. A lot of our accidents happen in clear sunshine and dry highways," said Cpl. Doug Thomas of the Arkansas State Police.

The Arkansas State Police reports that Fridays, between 2:00 and 4:00 p.m., are when the most wrecks happen.

"That's when a lot of people come to Jonesboro to eat on the weekends or shop. The new mall is going to bring more people in," said Cpl. Thomas, "More people that are not familiar with our highways and our road systems here."

But driver distraction is often the cause of most accidents.

"Some of the things we see as distractions are people that eat in their cars while they are driving down the road," said Sgt. Stephen McDaniel of the Jonesboro Police Officer, "We actually have people who are reading the newspaper or trying to read books or maps or publications."

ASP covered 84 wrecks in six counties last month, many that could have been avoided.

"Even though it says 55 mph, if you see people working out there or a lot of traffic, slow down a little more if you have to," said Cpl. Thomas.

"If people would get their minds on driving and safety more it would be better," said Lane.

The Arkansas State Police reports that last year in Jonesboro, more than 2500 motorists were involved in accidents, with a total damage loss of more then $9 million dollars.