Whether you’re having engine trouble, you’ve got a flat tire or you’ve been in a fender-bender with another vehicle, you’re eventually going to need to pull your car over to the side of the road and wait for assistance.
Unfortunately, being stuck at the side of the road can put you in harm’s way from other vehicles — whether you’re in or out of your car.
Tips for safety at the side of the road
Even in an emergency, you can usually steer your car a little before you park it. Here’s what you need to keep in mind.
- The right side of the road is best. Usually, that’s the side that will give you the most room to be out of traffic’s way.
- Put your hazard lights on right away. Hit that button as soon as you know you’re having trouble or before you move the car following a sudden stop.
- Move as far off the road as possible. You may have a lot of room or barely any, so do your best. Every inch or two can make a difference.
- Put out any emergency devices. If you happen to be carrying an orange flag, traffic cones or something similar in your car, put them by the rear of your vehicle to give other drivers extra warning.
- Call for help, and keep your phone handy. Just in case there’s an additional problem, you want to keep your phone in your hand until roadside assistance arrives.
- Stay in your car or get behind the guardrail. It’s generally wisest to stay inside your vehicle while you wait for help — just in case another car strikes you. If you feel exposed and unsafe because your car is sticking out into the road, consider moving behind the guardrail instead.
Despite your best efforts, you may still end up being hit by a passing car. That usually happens when a driver is distracted by their phone or moving too fast to change course by the time they realize your vehicle is stopped.
If that happens, don’t hesitate to seek fair compensation for your injuries and losses. An experienced attorney can show you how.