Posted on: 3 December 2020Share
Cars are an indispensable tool for many Americans. If you live outside of a dense urban area, then you likely rely on your vehicle for everything from work to buying necessities. Unfortunately, vehicle maintenance often falls by the wayside when times are tough. Despite their central role, cars also require significant upkeep, and the cost of items such as brakes and tires can rapidly add up.
Deferred maintenance is sometimes unavoidable, but it's important to remember that every ignored maintenance item increases the likelihood of a roadside breakdown. If you find yourself stuck on the side of the road, then you'll want to take a few steps to stay safe. Below you'll find three tips to get through a roadside emergency that occurs at the worst possible time: the dead of night.
1. Pack For Visibility
Being stuck in a disabled vehicle at night can lead to dangerous situations, especially on poorly lit roads. Although you should always move your car well away from traffic when it breaks down, emergencies sometimes make this impossible. Even worse, not all streets offer convenient breakdown lanes or other areas to move your car.
For these reasons, it's essential to pack items for visibility. Warning triangles or flares will help other motorists see you and make it easier for your tow truck to find you. The extra visibility will also help to protect your tow driver when they arrive and begin to load your vehicle onto their truck. When purchasing warning triangles, be sure to select a reflective set for nighttime visibility.
2. Provide Good Directions
Getting stuck on the side of the road is stressful, so it's easy to miss a few details. Providing accurate directions to your roadside assistance dispatch is crucial to allow help to find you quickly. While it's relatively easy to find a vehicle broken down in a fast-food parking lot or near a major intersection, it can sometimes be harder on remote or rural roads.
If you use a smartphone, familiarize yourself with its map features. In many cases, you can use your device to provide exact GPS coordinates to a dispatcher. Even if you cannot be this precise, it's helpful to name nearby streets or landmarks that you recently passed. All of these details can help a tow driver find you much more quickly.
3. Wait for Help
Once you've called for assistance, it's crucial to remain with your vehicle and wait for help. Never accept help from other motorists while you're on the side of the road and never stand near your car. Both of these choices may feel right, but the safest option is always to remain inside your vehicle with the doors locked.
By making yourself visible, providing accurate directions, and remaining calmly in your car, you can get through any roadside emergency that you may face. For more information about roadside assistance, contact a local service provider.