First off, I cannot stand those kind of people from the south.
Rednecks indeed. Some of them and I repeat SOME - not all, I'm not stereotyping - of them still think they are seperate from the rest of the country (confederates) and behave like that.
But honestly, the producers from Top Gear had to at least have some idea that something could or eventually was going to happen. I know there was the "contest" to draw attention to their cars but that joke actually played out in a scary situation.