Driving during winter is dangerous. Tires don’t grip on wet, icy roads, and all too often drivers get unwanted lessons in Newtonian physics. These Comcast repair trucks don’t seem to really care about physics, and may have caused at least a half-dozen wrecks on one stretch of road. Even worse, these Indianapolis-area Comcast workers just don’t seem to give a shit.
This video was sent to us by Jalopnik reader Paulo, and it’s also getting a lot of attention on Reddit. Here it is, so you can make some about-to-wreck cringe faces, too:
Wreck after wreck happens on this icy, snowy road, and the guys in the Comcast truck up front—which could have prevented it all by putting more cones out—are oblivious. Or they don’t give a shit.
It’s maddening to watch. Sure, maybe some of the drivers were going a bit too fast for the conditions, but the Comcast truck driver knows he’s blocking the road just past a blind hill. The people coming over the hill don’t see the cones he put out until way, way too late, and that’s when the carnage ensues.
Even if the driver did put out the standard number of cones, one per every 10 mph of speed on the road, those are for dry conditions. Even if there wasn’t a specific rule, you’d think after three cars put themselves in a ditch trying to avoid slamming into the truck maybe, just maybe, he’d take a tiny bit of initiative and perform the Herculean task of dropping another couple fucking cones down closer to the crest of the hill.
Also, the distance between those cones is far too small, and if they’re not visible before the crest of the hill, they’re all but useless. Someone on the Reddit forum dug up the OSHA guidelines for this sort of lane closure, and it’s clear the Comcast workers weren’t providing nearly enough warning. Here, look at this diagram:
That’s a pretty similar situation, even if we ignore the elevation change of the blind hill. There should have been big signs warning workers blocking a lane 100 feet away, along with a line of cones guiding traffic around the lane closure. And this isn’t even accounting for slushy roads.
The interactions with the Comcast employees is by far the worst part of this frustrating video. The trucks have more cones right on them, and yet the drivers refuse to place more cones out, or at least space the cones out to a reasonable distance to accommodate a plausible stopping distance on a slushy road.
Yes, a number of these people were going way too fast (hi, C10 driver!) and likely had inadequate tires. There’s blame to go around there. But the Comcast workers should really have gotten some sort of hint after, oh, the first three cars went off the road that maybe there’s more they could be doing on their end. Sticking to some written protocol only makes sense if that protocol is working. It clearly wasn’t here.
The understandably exasperated narrator of the video ends up putting out cones of his own, effectively doing the job that the Comcast employees should have done themselves, and is treated with scorn and contempt by those same employees.
“Do you have a job?” The second Comcast repair person asks the one man trying to keep more people from wrecking right in front of the trucks.
Fuck you, Comcast guys. And everyone else, slow down, already.
UPDATE: Comcast has provided us with a statement. It’s from Ed Marchetti, SVP of Technical Operations, Comcast Cable:
When I watched this video I was very concerned by what I saw. Our employees should always protect people and treat them with respect no matter what the situation. Safety matters most - especially in dangerous weather conditions like this.
We are actively investigating what happened when our technicians were on site to restore services during an outage and we will reach out to those who were impacted by this incident.
Within the next 24-48 hours, my team leaders will meet with our technicians across our company to use this as an example of how important it is to make everyone’s safety a priority in everything we do.
And just as important, there’s no place for disrespect - treating people the right way is the only way to work.