I am not sure what I was thinking about writing this morning. I lost all thoughts when I arrived at the scene of what I would learn was a traffic fatality. I commute approximately one hour each morning and back each evening on Alabama Hwy 69, it is a hilly and curvy road. The posted speed limit is 55mph with some curves as low as 35mph. Every day there are other commuters traveling at unsafe speeds, passing where there is not room and even in zones marked by solid lines indicating a no-passing.
This morning a couple of cars coming toward me flashed their headlights letting me know to be cautious as I rounded the next few corners. Between miles markers 172 and 171 I realized why. Traffic stopped. There were a line of three or four eighteen wheelers (food transport, flatbeds, and coal trucks) stopped along with several private vehicles. Some of the cars were making three point turns and headed back my direction, trying to find an alternate route. I parked my truck and walked to about 300 yards from the accident. I saw a tangled mass of metal in the ditch off the south bound lane and an overturned semi mostly in the north bound lane. The driver’s side of the semi was the site of the impact an impact that flipped the semi on its side knocking the axle from the frame. According to witnesses, a pick-up truck was travelling at high speeds and crossed into the path of the oncoming semi. I watched from that distance as emergency workers laid a sheet near the tangled mass of what was once the pick-up truck.
I walked back to my truck. I prayed for the driver of the semi and their family as they deal with recovering from this accident. I prayed for the family of the apparent fatality of the pick-up truck’s driver. As you read this, stop to pray for all involved. I know hearts are breaking and lives are shattered.
I also have a few thoughts for you. Specifically from my morning drive today:
- Slow down. There is no need to be in that much of a hurry. If you have to be at work or school at a certain time, give yourself plenty of time to get there.
- Be aware of the other drivers and the road around you. Avoid the distractions of texting, of switching radio stations, putting on make-up, or eating while driving.
- Know that we are not promised a tomorrow. According to the Hebrew writer, we will die and face judgment (Heb 9:27). Live in expectation of death and of Christ’s return in judgment.
- Share. Share the message of good news (the Gospel) with others so that they can be ready for judgment (Rom 1:16, 2Th 1:7-9, Gal 3:26-27).
Here is a link to Fox 6 and their report on the accident.
EDIT: The family of the victim in the accident informed me that he was on his way to work and fell asleep. He was not a careless driver or a thrill seeker. Our prayers continue to be with the family.