Having a road accident in Spain can be a very different experience in Spain to in the UK. Fortunately (touch wood), I havenít been involved in an accident as such to date but I have had a few near misses. One of these near misses took place last week as I was driving into Estepona town centre via the port. With complete right of way I was driving straight over a roundabout when a car pulled out from a hotel car park on the right. It pulled out across my path much to the horror of a pedestrian taking a midmorning stroll. I managed to hit the brake in time but I was no match for the elderly pedestrianís reflexes. His arm flapping and gestures provided a welcome distraction from the shock that I had just encountered and his active presence was a comfort. From his supportive reaction, I know that had I collided with the car, he would have been a keen witness in the incident.
As a British person, his willingness to react to something that he could evidently see was wrong and in a sense attempt to defend me, was refreshing. In the UK, the knee jerk reaction is more likely to turn a blind eye to a road accident or similar rather than get involved. On the contrary, the Spanish and I refer to those of the Andalucia region where I live; actually quite enjoy making their contribution to an incident. I donít know about the younger generations but certainly those middle aged and plus donít usually hold back when it comes to playing the witness or even attending minor casualties if they think that they can help in anyway.
Many a time I have seen one of my children fall off their bikes or simply trip over a crack in the pavement and within seconds two or three concerned Spaniards are kneeling by their side whilst I swiftly pick them up and usher them on without wanting to draw too much attention. Perhaps, it is fear of drawing attention to themselves that makes British would be witnesses reluctant to step in at the scene of an incident. It is most definitely something pertaining to cultural behaviour which makes the naturally more gregarious Spaniard always on guard to step in whenever they feel necessary.
So, if you are going to have incidents, save them for when you are in Spain as you wonít be alone as there is always some passer by keen to voice their opinion.