For a car to function, there are hundreds, maybe thousands, of parts in place that are working in conjunction. However, it is very common for any of these parts to fail, at some point in time, causing the vehicle to break down. This vehicle breakdown might be cause for some inconvenience; however, it should not become a cause for anxiety and panic to its driver.
Vehicle breakdowns have become extremely common, and getting out of this situation has become easier with time. There are a number of reasons for a vehicle breakdown to occur, which range from a flat tire or low fuel to a faulty battery. More complicated issues can also cause a vehicle to break down, which pertain to the engine, gearbox, or even the electrical circuitry of the car.
Whatever the cause of the car failure, we have to bear in mind that this is a common occurrence, and hence, be prepared for it at all times when travelling.
Preparing for a Car Breakdown
We have already established that a vehicle breakdown is not a rarity in any part of the world, and hence, one should be prepared for it whenever embarking on a new journey. The following is the list of tools, equipment as well as other essentials that would prove extremely beneficial in the event of a car breakdown:
- Fire extinguisher
- A spare tire that is properly inflated and in good condition
- A lug-nut wrench
- Car jack
- Car charger
- Torch with spare batteries
- A warning triangle
- A high-visibility jacket
- First aid kit
What to Do When Your Car Breaks Down?
Although the steps to be followed in the event of a vehicle breakdown are mostly similar, there are a few distinguishing factors where the response to a breakdown on the motorway is somewhat different from a breakdown on other roads or in a tunnel. Now, we discuss these steps.
Vehicle Breakdown on Any Other Road
If your car has broken down on a road other than a motorway, and if you do not have a fuel station or workshop anywhere in sight, you should undertake the following steps to get yourself out of this uncomfortable situation as soon as possible.
- Try to pull your car to the left side of the road if safely possible.
- Turn on the hazard lights on your car (in low visibility such as night-time). Also, turn on your sidelights.
- The tyres of the car should be turned towards the left side of the road.
- If the car is well off the road, exit your vehicle from the left door, away from any oncoming traffic.
- It is preferred to wear a high visibility jacket at night-time or other times of low visibility, such as rain or fog.
- Place a warning triangle behind your car at the approximate distance of 45 meters or 60 paces.
- Call for roadside assistance.
Vehicle Breakdown on the Motorway
When driving on the motorway, if you realise that your car tyre has gotten flat, or you are quickly running out of fuel, or you start hearing strange noises from your car, you should:
- Exit the motorway from the nearest interchange or get to the emergency refuge point.
- If both options seem out of the question, get to the hard shoulder on the left side of the motorway.
- If the car is unable to reach the hard shoulder, get to as left side of the road as your car can, and stay inside the vehicle with your seatbelt on.
- If you have safely exited the motorway, you should get to the nearest fuel station or workshop, depending on your car’s ailment.
- If you have not exited the motorway, you should call your preferred roadside assistance.
- If your car is on the hard shoulder, then you should turn your car tyres towards the left, switch on the hazard lights and also the sidelights (in the case of low visibility), and exit the vehicle from the left door, preferably wearing high visibility jackets.
- Do not attempt to repair your car yourself in this situation.
Vehicle Breakdown in a Tunnel
England does have an extensive network of road tunnels so as to benefit from higher road safety and lower traffic congestion, among other factors. When driving in such a tunnel, it is highly probable that your vehicle might break down well within the infrastructure. On the rare occasion that it does, follow the steps listed below to make it out safely and securely.
- Bring your car to the leftmost side of the tunnel that you possibly can.
- Turn on the hazard lights.
- Exit the car from the left door, preferably wearing a high-visibility jacket.
- Call your breakdown recovery partners.
Wrapping It Up!
If there are going to be cars, then there are sure to be car breakdowns. In British land, the number of breakdown incidents amounts to millions. Therefore, there is a high chance that you may have to go through the ordeal at some point in time. Although this is a preventable phenomenon through proper preparation and vehicle maintenance, the probability of you having to go through this is still very high. Therefore, knowing what to do at the right time will help you go through this in a smoother fashion. Read our guide to acquaint yourself with the steps to follow in such a situation.
Ace Recovery is a professional roadside assistance service catering to the people in Bolton, Greater Manchester, and the surrounding areas. Our car breakdown services are available 24/7, 365 days a year. Get in touch with us if you have a faulty vehicle.