(LibertySociety.com) – Although no one wants to run over a turtle, stopping for one in the middle of a busy highway can be dangerous. However, that’s exactly what happened in Walton County, Florida on a U.S. highway full of traffic — and it led to a massive accident involving multiple vehicles.
The driver, who was in the left lane of the highway, stopped without turning on their emergency flashers to allow a turtle to cross the road, resulting in a multi-car accident, including a semi-truck that hit several vehicles. Fortunately, everyone involved survived the accident, including the turtle, but the decision to stop in the middle of the roadway caused unnecessary hardship for drivers who could not avoid being hit by another vehicle. The Walton County Sheriff’s Office released a statement after the accident, expressing the need for citizens to respect and protect Florida wildlife. However, the office added, “We don’t advise causing a road obstruction because of a reptilian obstruction.” It also shared a video on Facebook of the incident.
Turtles begin moving in the springtime, and motorists can encounter many turtles during their daily commute. Oftentimes, news organizations will send reminders to drivers to be aware of the increased movement of these reptiles to increase the chances of turtles making it across the road. However, the warnings usually come with a reminder to avoid hitting turtles in a safe way that does not endanger lives. CBS Minnesota put out a statement from the Wildlife Rehabilitation Center in Roseville, Minnesota, saying that during this time of year, they can see up to 200 animals brought in daily. The article notes that if it is possible to safely stop and move a turtle across the road, always take it in the direction it was heading, as they know where their destination is. However, this is never advised on busy highways such as the one in Florida that caused the multi-car accident, and you should always turn on your flashers any time you stop on the road for any reason.
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