Roadside Breakdown Advice

Breaking down on the road can leave you in a difficult and potentially dangerous situation. Here are our tips on what you should do if you are put in this position.

Get Off the Road

It is crucial that you get yourself and your vehicle off the road if you have broken down. On a motorway with a hard shoulder you should attempt to move to this area as soon as possible. The hard shoulder is for serious problems only, so if possible you should attempt to drive to a safer place off the motorway, such as a service station.

Stopping on the Hard Shoulder

If you are forced to stop on the hard shoulder, follow these steps:

  • Stop as far to the left as possible with all your wheels turned to the left
  • Turn your hazard warning lights on
  • Exit your vehicle using the left hand doors and stand as far away from the road as you can by retreating up a bank or behind a barrier
  • Ensure your passengers keep away from the carriageway and make sure you keep children under control

If You Can't Get Over to the Hard Shoulder

If you cannot move over to the hard shoulder or you are on a fast moving road which does not have one, you will need to stop your car. This is extremely dangerous and you should be very careful. Leave on your sidelights, turn on your hazard warning lights and switch on your interior lights to make yourself more visible to other drivers. You should not make any attempt to leave your car, unless the vehicle presents an immediate threat, instead use a mobile phone to call for help.

Make Other Drivers Aware of You

Make sure that your car is lit up with sidelights and you have switched on your hazard warning lights. If you have a reflective jacket you should put this on. If it is dark outside, you can make yourself more visible by turning your interior car lights on. On roads, except for motorways, you should place a warning triangle on the road at least 45 metres behind your vehicle. You must make sure that it is safe to do so beforehand.

Call for Help

For safety reasons, you should not attempt to make any repairs yourself. Instead you should call for help from your mobile phone once you are a suitable distance from your vehicle. Try to find location signs so you can explain where you are whilst calling your breakdown service.

If you do not have a mobile phone, walk to an emergency telephone on your side of the carriageway. This phone is free and will connect automatically to the police/Highways Agency.

Do not forget to also inform the police of your situation, as your breakdown could put other motorists at risk.

Breakdowns can be scary, but staying calm and waiting patiently for help is the best thing that you can do.

Looking after your car and tyres is probably the best way to avoid a breakdown before it even happens. If you would like to have your car checked for warning signs or simply require any further information regarding car safety, find your nearest Setyres branch and our expert staff will help with any queries you may have.

Posted on: 17/08/2015

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