When something disastrous happens, you can usually count on at least a few people turning up just to stop and stare at it. Although rubbernecking is generally considered distasteful behavior, most of us have to admit that on some level, we can understand the fascination.
But even if we understand it, we often have a hard time explaining it. It shouldn't make sense that something can horrify us in a way that transfixes us, but some things legitimately do make us stare in wonder.
After all, there are a lot of fascinating parts of this world that are waiting to be discovered and there's no rule stating that these discoveries have to be pleasant.