'Dangerous irresponsible behaviour'' by motorists stopping to take photos for social media almost led to crashes on the busy M7 Dublin Cork Limerick motorway as emergency crews responded to a big truck fire on the road.
The Laois County Fire and Rescue Service and Kildare Fire Service responded to the truck blaze with Gardaí around 7pm on Saturday. The service said the extensive scale of the blaze forced the closure of the busy road.
However, the Laois service said the behaviour of some drivers who came upon the scene between junctions 14 and 15 could have made the situation a lot worse.
At least one motorist stopped directly parallel to take a photograph at the height of the blaze. The picture soon ended up on facebook and other media.
Laois fire service spokesperson confirmed what happened to the Leinster Express.
"Several near misses occurred during the fire with cars slowing and stopping in the far carriageway of the motorway to take pictures. (It was) very dangerous irresponsible behaviour.
"If one of the cars stopping to take pictures had ended up in a pile-up in the other carriageway it would have been a very serious situation.
"Six or seven cars stopped in the opposite carriageway when we were there. Numerous cars behind them had to take evasive action," said a spokesperson.
The Laois service called on motorists to be more aware of road safety in such situations.
Just to be aware, several near misses occurred during the fire with cars slowing and stopping in the far carriageway of the motorway to take pictures. Very dangerous irresponsible behaviour.— Laois Fire & Rescue (@LaoisFireRescue) April 13, 2019