As It Happens

Couple unknowingly drove 20 km with a man asleep on their trunk

Driving home from a barbecue in Memphis, Carl Webb and his wife didn't realize someone was asleep on the back of their car until a police officer pulled them over.
The trunk where the man fell asleep was only about 35 centimetres across. (Facebook/Carl Webb)

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Carl and Hazel Webb left the Memphis In May barbecue festival with more than full stomachs. Although they didn't know it at the time, they drove off with a man asleep on the trunk of their car.

It was dark when the couple left the food festival, and the car's rear sun shade was up. They didn't notice the man curled up on the 35-centimetre wide space at the back of the vehicle.

They headed down the highway and were going more than 100 kilometres per hour, oblivious to the sleeping man, when a Memphis Police officer pulled them over.

Memphis police say that the Webbs were driving more than 100 km/hour when they spotted the man lying on their trunk. (Facebook/Carl Webb)

Carl Webb told As It Happens host Carol Off he thought the officer was joking when the told them why he'd stopped them.

"I know he was speaking English, at least with a proper Southern dialect, but I could not grasp the meaning of the words," Webb said.

Lives could have been permanently changed. We were very lucky and so was he.- Carl Webb

The man on the trunk was unhurt, according to the Memphis Police Department. He had no idea that he'd hitched a ride with the Webbs, even though he'd travelled more than 20 kilometres. He told the officer the last thing he recalled was being at the barbecue festival.

Webb said he's not sure how the man managed to stay on top of the car for so long.

"We're very thankful, believe me, that everything turned out well because, when you think about what could have happened, it is quite unnerving," he said. "Lives could have been permanently changed. We were very lucky and so was he."

Webb said he can't understand why nobody besides the police officer signalled to him that there was a man on his vehicle who might be in danger — even though someone on the highway took a video.

"What is just most mind-boggling is that whoever it was didn't bother to honk their horn, flash their lights, to make us aware of it," he said.


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