Car Breakdown Safety

Smart Roadside Safety

Safety should be your first concern if your car breaks down. One of the worst things you can do is get out of your vehicle at a busy intersection or on the highway to check damage from a fender bender or change a tire.

Roadside Emergency

The following are recommendations and precautions drivers should take in the event of a breakdown:

  1. Busy highways are incredibly dangerous and getting out of your vehicle to examine damage is not recommended. Move your vehicle to a safe place first prior to getting out.
  2. If you’ve been in an accident, motion the other driver to pull up to a safe spot as well.If your vehicle is immobile, it may be safer to stay in the vehicle and wait for help or use a cell phone to summons help. In  most situations, standing outside of your vehicle in traffic is not safe.
  3. Stock up on safety devices for your vehicle. Have flares or triangles accessible to mark your location once you get to the side of the road. Marking your vehicle’s location is crucial to warning other drivers in advance of your vehicles location. Don’t forget to also turn on your hazard lights!
  4. If you experience what appears to be a flat tire or a blowout, move your vehicle to a safe place before attempting any inspection or repair – even if it will destroy the wheel getting there. The cost of a tire, rim or wheel is minor compared to endangering yours and other drivers safety.

Be  Prepared

You never know if you are going to be involved in a crash, breakdown or other disasters on the road. Keep you and your passengers as safe as possible by being prepared for such events.

Roadside Emergency Kit
A winter driving safety kit is spread out to show the essential items at Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D., Oct. 31, 2012. In the event of an emergency situation, a winter driving safety kit can mean the difference of life or death. Items of a survival kit can vary, but all should include water, blankets, jumper cables, ice scraper, basic tools, cat litter for tire traction, a shovel, a first aid kit, and non-perishable food items. For more information on how to build a safety kit, call the 28th Bomb Wing ground safety office at (605) 385-4771. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Alystria Maurer/Released)

Items you should keep in your vehicle at all times:

  • Jumper cables
  • Flags or flares
  • Reflective triangles
  • Canned instant tire inflator
  • Heavy-duty rope
  • Gloves and warm blankets for winter breakdowns
  • First aid kit
  • Water and snacks
  • Keep phones charged and backup chargers or batteries in your vehicle
  • Insurance and emergency contact information

Remember if you feel you are in danger or your vehicle can’t be moved to a safe place after an accident or breakdown, call the police for help immediately.

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