Avoid an accident if your car breaks down on a highway with these simple steps.

What You Should Do If Your Car Breaks DownWhether your car is brand new or more than a few years old, break downs can happen.  They can be incredibly frustrating, and a bit scary if they happen on a highway or other busy road.  With vehicles zooming by at high rates of speed, it can be hard to figure out how to safely get out of harm’s way and to avoid being in an accident — either with your car or as a pedestrian as you wait for help.  These simple steps can help you avoid collisions after a break down on a busy road after an accident.

First, if you start to see or hear signs of car trouble, take a look around to get a sense of where you are so that you can pass this information along when you call for help.  This includes cross streets, mile marker signs, exits, shopping plazas, and restaurants. When possible, try to stay in a well-lit area if you break down at night to make it easier for other vehicles to see you.

Some of the warning signs of an imminent break down may include your car smoking, making strange noises, a warning light coming on, or difficulty steering.  If any of these things occur, you may be headed towards a break down — which is a good time to start looking towards coasting as far off the road as possible, ideally towards a brightly lit location. Be sure to signal as you are turning off the road (if possible) and/or turn on your emergency flashers to let other cars know that you are experiencing car trouble. 

If your car has been hit by another vehicle, exit when it is safe to do so.  Be careful, and watch for oncoming traffic.  Always be aware that bad weather and dark conditions can make it hard for others to see you and your vehicle.  Do not stand directly in front of or behind your car, which can make it hard for other people to see you. Ideally, you should stay inside your car if it is safe to do so (i.e., if your car is not on fire and is not in danger of being hit by other vehicles).  You can alert other cars to your presence by placing flares and orange triangles near your car and raising your car’s hood.  Then use your cellphone to call for help.

If you do have to walk to get help, make sure to watch out for traffic to avoid being struck.  If you are waiting in your car, keep your doors locked and do not open up your doors for strangers or people who do not have identification as mechanics, first responders, or others.

Breaking down is an unfortunate situation, but you can minimize the chances of it leading to a car or pedestrian accident by taking these steps.  If you have been involved in any type of accident, the Law Offices of Larry H. Parker can help.  We have more than 40 years of experience representing victims of accidents, and have helped more than 100,000 people get the money they deserve for their injuries.  Contact us today at 800-333-0000 or to schedule a free initial consultation and learn how we can help you.