Safety When Your Car Breaks Down
It's inevitable, your car breaks down once in a while. You’re on your way to work and preparing for a huge presentation, traveling for your first vacation of the year, or driving somewhere after dark, and that’s when it happens: a tire goes flat, you run out of gas or you have engine trouble.
Blowouts and breakdowns happen when you least expect them, meaning you’ll need to know the steps to take in the event of a vehicle-related crisis ahead of time. The worst thing you can do is panic. The best thing you can do is have a plan in place to ensure you’re prepared in case your vehicle breaks down.
7 Steps to Take When Your Vehicle Breaks Down
It’s easy to get overwhelmed when something goes wrong on a drive, whether you’re in the middle of busy traffic or on a dark and deserted side road. The great news is that the steps to ensure your safety are largely the same no matter where you are. Here are seven things to keep in mind to ensure you’re safe and can easily get help when your car breaks down.
Get Out of the Way
If you’ve got a blown tire, an empty gas tank, or an engine problem, your car will keep rolling for a bit after the problem hits. Do what you can to pull to the shoulder on the right side of the road, slow down gradually, and put your emergency flashers on after you park. This will alert other drivers that you’re stopped and potentially experiencing a problem, prompting them to safely move away from your vehicle as they pass by.
Bonus: If you’re in the middle of traffic, put your flashers on immediately and get as far to the right as you can. This will alert other motorists that there is a problem and encourage them to go around your vehicle. Call 9-1-1 to alert an officer to come and help direct traffic behind you, then call a towing service to remove your car as soon as possible.
Assess the Situation
Much like a medical situation, you’ll first want to take stock of what’s going on with your car and determine if you’re in danger. The standard rule of thumb is that you’re safer waiting in your vehicle when you’ve got an emergency. If you’ve got a tire blow out or an empty gas tank, for example, you’ll be safer in your car while you call for assistance than standing on the side of the road with traffic blowing past. If your engine is smoking you’ll want to get out of the car and move away from it while you wait.
Take Stock of Where You Are
It’s easier to get quick help if you know where you are, noting mile markers, intersections and landmarks. Always pay attention to the names of roads and the compass direction in which you are heading so you can quickly give details like, “I’m headed southbound on Smith Street, just past the Walmart at Smith and 9th,” rather than “I don’t know which street or direction, but I think I’m near a convenience store.”
Decide What Help You Need
If you’re calling for roadside assistance because you ran out of gas, you’ll need to provide information about the type of gas your car uses. If you’re calling about a blown tire, it’s best to know if you have a spare in your trunk or if you’ll need a technician to bring you one. If your engine died unexpectedly, and an empty gas tank isn’t the culprit, you’ll need to request that someone tow your car. If you’re unsure what the problem is, carefully get out of your car to check. Wait for traffic to clear before opening your door, then stay close to your vehicle when assessing the problem.
Alert A Family Member or Friend
It’s always best to let someone know where you are the moment you’re able to ascertain where and the situation involved. It’s easy to get wrapped up in immediately calling for a provider to offer a solution, but letting a loved one know what’s going on before you do will go a long way toward ensuring you are calm and safe when help arrives. Your emergency contact might be nearby and could come and wait with you and provide you with a warm, dry, safe place to wait during this crisis.
Call For Roadside Assistance
Some agencies will not be available after normal business hours, but other towing companies will be ready to take your call 24/7. It’s best to keep the number of a trusted roadside services provider in your phone’s contacts in case of emergencies, because you’ll never know when one will strike. Do your research ahead of time and select a full-service company that offers quality you can trust. Then make the call.
Lock Car Doors Until Help Arrives
This cannot be stressed enough: If possible, remain inside your car as you wait for your emergency roadside assistance team to come and assess your situation. Standing outside on busy roads, or any road (particularly at night) could be hazardous. Passing cars could become a hazard and weather may not be pleasant. As long as the engine is not smoking or on fire, the safest place to be is in your car.
Vehicle Break Down? Call Us for Help.
If you’re in driving-related crisis, you’re likely feeling a lot of emotions. The last thing you want to do is have to worry about who to call when your car breaks down or you experience a driving-related emergency.
Roadside Services Towing of NWA has been serving the greater Northwest Arkansas region with 24/7 roadside assistance, fuel deliveries, flat tire repairs, jump starts, lockouts, and accident-related services since 2012. Our team of expert technicians provides quality roadside assistance you can trust, no matter what your emergency or time of day or night.
Call Roadside Services Towing of NWA at (479) 888-4654 for roadside assistance today.