What to Do During an Emergency Roadside Stop
March 5th, 2020 by Fix Auto USA
In the event of an emergency, you may need to pull your car over and stop on the side of the road. If you know how to perform an emergency roadside stop, you can reduce the risk of a collision or accident.
How to Do an Emergency Roadside Stop
If you need to make an emergency roadside stop, you should first turn on your car’s directional signal and pull over. Try to get as far off the road as you can without putting yourself or others in danger.
Once you reach the side of the road, shift your car’s transmission into the parking gear. Then, set the parking brake and activate your car’s emergency flashers. Turn off your car’s engine and remove the keys from your vehicle. Finally, check traffic to ensure you can safely leave your car, then exit your vehicle.
Roadside Emergency Safety Tips
There is no telling when you’ll need to make an emergency roadside stop. However, if you plan ahead for roadside emergencies, you’ll be well-equipped to handle any problems that arise if you suddenly need to pull your car off the road.
Some of the things you can do to stay safe in a roadside emergency include:
1. Act Quickly at the First Sign of Danger
If your car is malfunctioning or you feel unsafe driving, don’t wait to pull off the road. Instead, activate your car’s directional and complete an emergency roadside stop. If you cannot drive your vehicle, reach out to family members, friends, and others for help. Or, if you eventually feel safe to return to the road, proceed with caution when you start driving once again.
2. Pull Your Car Off the Road As Far As You Can
In an emergency, you need to pull your car off the road as far as you can. That way, you’ll be in a safe spot until help arrives on scene.
Whenever possible, you should exit a freeway or roadway or pull into a rest area or parking lot for an emergency roadside stop. You can also try to stop under a streetlight or at a shoulder if that is the best you can do.
When you pull your car off the road, you should never stop on curves or corners, at the bottom of a hill, or on a narrow road. The left shoulder of a highway should also be avoided unless there is no other place to stop.
3. Warn Other Drivers About Your Emergency
Pop the hood of your car and activate your car’s hazard lights to notify other drivers about your emergency. If you perform a nighttime emergency roadside stop, keep your car’s lights on. You can set up safety cones, flares, and other hazard warnings if they’re available, too.
4. Get Roadside Assistance
If you have roadside assistance through your insurance company, reach out to your insurer if you experience a roadside emergency. This enables you to get immediate roadside help, so you can get your car towed or repaired and reach your destination safely.
If you do not have roadside assistance through your insurance policy, you can always look up local tow companies in your area. Or, you can call the police, who can put you in touch with a nearby tow provider.
5. Beware of Road Traffic
If you are forced to pull over to the shoulder, your car is left unprotected, as there is only a thin, white line that separates your vehicle from others on the road. Thus, you should stay in your car with your seat belt on and your doors locked until it is safe to perform roadside repairs or until roadside assistance arrives.
6. Pack a Roadside Emergency Kit
A roadside emergency kit includes various essentials to help you get through a roadside emergency. Your kit should include a spare tire, duct tape, gloves, jumper cables, and other tools and supplies you can use to fix your car. It is also beneficial to pack water, food, and a first aid kit in your roadside emergency set. You can even incorporate flags, flares, and reflective triangles into your roadside emergency kit, so you can notify other drivers when you need to pull off the road.
7. Only Accept Roadside Assistance from People You Trust
A roadside emergency can be stressful, and unfortunately, it can put you in a vulnerable position. If a driver pulls off the road and offers to help you during the emergency, you may be willing to accept his or her assistance. But, doing so can be dangerous, and it should be avoided at all costs.
Remember, safety is paramount, particularly in a roadside emergency. If you are forced to pull off the road, wait for a friend or family member to arrive. You can always call the police for emergency assistance as well.
Use these tips, and you’ll be well-equipped to stay safe any time you need to make an emergency roadside stop.
This blog post was contributed by Fix Auto Fairfield-Suisun City, a leading industry expert and collision repair shop servicing the Solano County and Sacramento area.
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