Tire blow-out – Engine stalls – Transmission failure – Breakdowns
Eventually all of us will encounter an emergency situation while traveling on the road, which can be potentially dangerous. Maintaining your composure and following a few basic procedures will get your through the situation safely. Whether it’s a tire blow-out, engine stall or other major malfunction, you will need to follow a basic guideline.
Below is a check list of tips to follow:
- At the first sign of tire trouble, grip the steering wheel firmly.
- Don’t apply the brakes, unless you need to in order to control the car to safety.
- It’s better to let the car slow down gradually by taking your foot off the gas pedal.
- Work your vehicle toward the breakdown lane or, if possible, toward an exit.
- If it is necessary to change lanes, signal your intentions to drivers behind and do so smoothly and carefully, watching your mirrors and the traffic around you very closely.
- Steer as your vehicle slows down. It is better to roll the car off the roadway (when you have slowed to 30 miles per hour) and into a safe place than it is to stop in traffic and risk a rear-end or side collision from other vehicles.
- When all four wheels are off the pavement—brake cautiously until you stop.
- It’s important to have the car well off the pavement and away from traffic before stopping, even if proceeding to a place of safety means rolling along slowly with a flat tire.
- Once off the road, turn on your emergency flashers.
- Remember that being safe must take precedence over your schedule or whatever other concerns you may have. Therefore, it may be best to get professional help if you have a breakdown on a multi-lane highway.
- Don’t stand behind or next to your vehicle. If possible, stand away from the vehicle and wait for help to arrive.
- All interstate highways and major roads are patrolled regularly. Also, some highways have special “call-for-help” phones. If you have a cell phone you can call right from the roadside. It is inadvisable to walk on a multi-lane highway. However, if you can see a source of help and are able to reach it on foot, try the direct approach by walking but keeping as far from traffic as possible.