Yesterday on my way home from work I saw two identical incidents with two very different outcomes:
1. Car travelling northbound had a flat tyre and was parked on the hard shoulder (probably waiting for the AA to come and change it.... (that's a whole other blog post in the waiting))
2. Another car travelling northbound one junction back had a flat tyre and was parked on the hard shoulder (probab.... you get the picture)
One of these incidents had the effect of causing a mile long tail-back and the other one didn't.
The only difference between the two was the addition of a HATO! I'm not arrogant enough to think that I have all the answers and know exactly what happened in each incident but what it looked like was that it was just a case of a car getting a flat tyre and waiting for assistance.
Granted, people are stupid and seem to want to slow down to look.. but only, it seems, if there is a HATO with its flashing lights on!
I'm a believer that if there is a serious incident that HATOs can be of use but let's face it; if an incident is serious enough - then you'd need real police there!