Road Safety Tips During a Vehicle Breakdown

Having your vehicle breakdown is never convenient. As much as you try to prepare and maintain your vehicle to prevent this from occurring, issues can still arise.  To make sure you are prepared if you find yourself in this situation, here are some basic steps to make a vehicle breakdown a little easier.

  1. Be prepared before a breakdown
    • Have your vehicle inspected regularly and perform the required maintenance and inspections on it.
    • Have some essential items in your vehicle:
      • A cell phone charger
      • Flashlight
      • Jumper Cables
      • Warning reflectors or Flares
      • A First Aid Kit
      • An umbrella
      • Bottled water.
  1. Understand how to get off the main road safely
    • Vehicles do not just stop when they have a mechanical issue, so you will have some time to get to the side of road as your vehicle slows down
    • Avoid sudden braking and take your foot off the accelerator pedal and gently steer the vehicle off the road
  2. Call for assistance
    • First note your exact location
    • Roadside assistance is your friend. Keep the phone number handy in the vehicle and stowed in your cell phone.
    • If you are in serious trouble dial 911
  3. Protect yourself and other drivers
    • Turn on your hazard lights
    • If it is safe to get out of your vehicle, put out warning reflectors or flares. These should be at least 40-60 feet from the back of your vehicle
  4. Your best judgment should be used
    • Stay in your vehicle if it is safe
    • Strangers may stop to offer help while you are waiting for roadside assistance. Let your “gut” guide you, if it does not feel right, roll your window down part way, and let them know that help is on the way.

Mechanical breakdowns are of course never fun. Hopefully following the steps above will get you back on the road and to your destination quickly!