When your vehicle suddenly breaks down in the middle of the road, not only can it put a damper on your day, it can also become a dangerous situation.
Many motor vehicle accidents occur after a vehicle is suddenly stalled on a busy road or while a driver and/or passenger is attempting to get the vehicle out of the way of oncoming traffic. If you are by yourself when your vehicle breaks down, it easy to suddenly become anxious about what to do next.
At Gordon & Doner, we believe that following some general guidelines on what to do if your car breaks down can help you take care of the situation as swiftly and safely as possible.
- Make sure you pull over or get your vehicle over
As soon as you detect a mechanical issue, move to the right lane so that you can get your vehicle off the road as soon as possible. If your vehicle breaks down in the middle lane of a road, you will need to get it out of the way of moving traffic.
- Put your hazard lights on
Hazard lights will make other drivers aware of a possible issue and could make it much easier to get your vehicle out of the road.
- Call for help
If you have emergency roadside assistance or AAA available, call them for assistance. Make sure you are aware of your location including the intersection, exit or mile-marker.
- Try to figure out what the problem is
If you're familiar with your vehicle, you could figure out what the problem is without the need for roadside assistance. Flat tires, dead batteries and running out of gas are potential issues that you could take care of in order to get yourself back on the road. Having a vehicle emergency kit can also help you be prepared for these types of situations.
- Stay with your car
Although you may want to get out of your vehicle, it is important to stay inside your car (with your seatbelt on). If you must exit your car or move it out of the way of oncoming traffic, only do so when it is safe. If you can see help within walking distance, assess whether you can safely leave your vehicle and passengers for a short period of time. If you leave your vehicle, leave a note on the dashboard with your destination and the time you left.
- Know your rights
It is your responsibility to know exactly what is covered in your roadside assistance policy. Make sure you're familiar with your policy and the services you should be receiving. Additionally, if you are still paying for your vehicle, make sure you know what is covered in any extended warranty you may have purchased.
If you or someone you love has been injured in an accident that occurred while dealing with a broken down vehicle, a personal injury attorney at Gordon & Doner can help you get the justice you deserve.