How to Handle a Vehicle Breakdown

August brings with it the feeling that summer should be over soon, except that we still have to deal with the heat. This can be hard on your vehicle and even though we all try to do the best in vehicle maintenance, the heat plus internal issues can catch you in a rough spot before you know it. This month, we decided to discuss the steps you should take in case you end up with a vehicle broken down on the side of the road.

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  • First thing: get your car off of the road. Even when you’re in the midst of that moment when you realize you can’t continue down the road, you usually have enough time to get your car out of the way of traffic and onto a shoulder. If not, turn on your hazard lights immediately. When your car is on the side of the road, put it in Park and engage your emergency brake. Also turn your steering wheel so that your tires face away from the road. That way your car won’t accidentally roll into oncoming traffic. Again, turn your hazard lights on.
  • Call for help. Fortunately, almost all of us have a cell phone in this day and age. Call a family member, and the police if there’s been an accident or if one is needed for safety issues. Then call Crumpler’s Automotive and set up to get your vehicle moved to our shop. Call (910) 483-2958, or (910) 818-4646, or (910) 818-2958.
  • Let other drivers know you’re in trouble. In addition to your hazards, if it’s safe, consider putting out some road flares if you have them. Place them about 50 feet behind your car. Only get out of the vehicle if you’re safe to do so. You can also hang a white towel or shirt out of the window or tie this to a mirror while you safely stay in the vehicle.
  • Stay with your vehicle. It’s easiest to coordinate with roadside assistance if you’re present, and it’s also not safe to leave the scene on foot. 4,000 pedestrians are killed per year in the United States.
  • Know your limitations. Now probably isn’t your best moment to start trying to repair your vehicle. If you’ve never changed a flat tire before, don’t try on the side of the road. Learn in a safe scenario first, because your adrenaline will be up and this generally doesn’t help with trying any new skill for the first time. If you can change a tire, at the very least wait for the police so they can monitor traffic while you change it in less-than-ideal conditions.
  • Use common sense. Every situation when you’re broken down is different. Try to remain calm and don’t let anxiety take over. Be wary of strangers as well. As much as there are good people out there, there’s also a handful that wish to take advantage of you. The true Good Samaritan will be understanding of your wariness.  Trust your gut–it’s there for a reason! If a stranger approaches to help, it’s best to be in your car with the doors locked. Roll down the window a bit to tell them that help is on the way.

We’re here for you and will always be available to advise you on the correct course of action, so don’t hesitate to call us when you’re in a tough spot!

It’s still the season for Husqvarna! We have so much available at our shop. If you don’t see it out front, ask us. Chances are we have what you’re looking for in the back. If not, we can definitely order it!

 

And if you’re in the market for a used vehicle, motorcycle, ATV or golf cart, come check out all that we have at our place. You may be surprised at what you find!

Have comments or suggestions? Let us know! Also make sure to follow our Crumpler’s Automotive Facebook page and our Crumpler’s Custom Cycle Facebook page to keep up with all that’s going on daily at the shop. And check out our website to order tires or learn more about all that we offer!

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