Dozens fined for filming fatal accident on Dutch highway

Paramedics and a police officer at the scene of an incident (Stock photo: Politie). (Paramedics and a police officer at the scene of an incident (Stock photo: Politie))

The police fined around 25 people for photographing or filming the aftermath of a fatal accident on the A58 highway near Bavel on Saturday. The fines were issued based on license plate numbers. Drivers who had their phones in their hands near the accident can expect a fine, De Gelderlander reports.

Three cars collided on the A58 on Saturday. The cause of the accident is not yet clear. A 48-year-old man from Limburg died at the scene. Another man and a woman were seriously injured. The highway was closed for hours so that emergency services could do their work, which was hampered by other road users stopping to film the tragedy.

"After the collision people felt it necessary to take their phones and make recordings of the vehicles and the victims and to walk though trace evidence at the scene of the accident. Even during the resuscitation of one of the victims", the Leijdal police team wrote on Facebook. "This not only shows that you do not have any form of respect, but you also get in the way and cause anger among bystanders and the emergency services."

Police officer Koen Simmers had to ask one woman multiple times to stop filming while first responders fought for the life of one fo the victims. "Madam, would you please not film while we are resuscitating someone", he asked her politely. But she ignored him. When he asked again, she stalked away. "To then hold yourself back as a police officer is very difficult, I can tell you", Simmers said on Twitter. "Fortunately there was more than enough help quickly. Afterwards I heard from bystanders that people were taking pictures from one of the vehicles, while the victim was trapped and visibly injured."

Many motorists ignored a red cross placed at the scene of the accident, to keep them driving over evidence. Some filmed the scene as they drove past. One even stopped on the other lane, almost causing another accident. "They can count on hefty fines", the police said.