Getting stuck on the side of the road is a rarity these days. Modern cars are very reliable, and they’re unlikely to have a problem when they’re well-maintained.
But breakdowns do happen, so it’s important to know who to call when you need a tow truck Ipswich. Having a plan takes the stress and mess out of breakdowns and accidents, and it ensures you and your passengers will get home safely.
In this article, we’re going to discuss what you need to do if your car breaks down on the road, on the motorway, or on private property.
What to Do if You Break Down on a Public Road
Most breakdowns occur on the roads we travel along every day. These roads are usually low-speed and relatively safe places to break down.
- If your car stops working on a public road, you should:
- Indicate and pull as far to the left as possible – turn down a side street if you can
- Turn on your hazard lights to show that the vehicle is broken down
- Avoid trying to restart the car as this may cause further damage
- Assess the situation and determine whether it’s safe to leave the vehicle
- If safe, leave the vehicle through the passenger side
- Stand a safe distance away from the car (preferably somewhere behind the vehicle)
- Contact a tow truck for help
Always be mindful that broken down vehicles are a hazard for other road users. That puts you at significant risk if you are stuck on the side of the road. If the road is busy, or if there’s nowhere safe to wait for a tow truck, remain inside the car with your seatbelt fastened.
It’s inconvenient to be broken down, but it’s an easy situation to deal with. Remain calm and deal with the issue methodically. You can find a tow truck by:
- Contacting your insurer. Insurance companies rarely cover breakdown towing. But they do work closely with towing operators in your area, so they’ll be able to help you find a reputable company.
- Contacting your mechanic. Similarly, mechanics often maintain relationships with towing companies they trust. You can contact your mechanic (or the dealership service center) if you need the number of a good towing company.
- Contacting your roadside assistance. Roadside assistance programs typically provide breakdown towing at discounted rates. Keep in mind that these services are usually limited to a certain radius, and you may pay more for long-distance towing.
- Contacting towing companies directly. You can contact private towing companies on your own. It’s a good idea to keep the number of a reputable towing company in your phone at all times. That way, you always know who to call when you need help!
What to Do if You Break Down on a Motorway
In Australia, most motorways are owned and maintained by private companies. These companies are responsible for keeping motorists safe. As such, they typically provide free breakdown towing to move your car off the motorway.
If you break down on a motorway, then stay where you are. Assess the situation and decide whether it’s safe to leave the car. If it’s safe, exit the vehicle via the passenger side and take shelter behind a barrier.
If the road is busy or if you’re concerned about safety, stay in the vehicle with your seatbelt fastened. Modern cars are designed to withstand accidents, so they’re usually the safest place to be when you’re stuck on the side of the road.
Keep your phone handy. Private motorway companies monitor the roadway and cross-reference your registration details. They will attempt to phone you to arrange a tow truck. If they can’t reach you, they’ll still send a tow truck to your location as soon as possible.
What to Do if You Break Down in a Parking Lot
Getting stuck in a car park is very common. Many vehicle breakdowns are caused by dead batteries and flat tyres. So you may be able to get to your destination, but getting home could be a separate issue.
Parking lots are private property, so they’re governed by slightly different rules to motorways and public roads.
The first thing you should do is contact the owner of the property or speak to the site manager. They’ll be able to help you figure out what to do next. Once they’ve been looped in, you can call for a tow truck.
Make sure you tell your towing operator that you have broken down in a parking lot, especially if it’s a multi-story structure. Standard flatbed tow trucks typically won’t fit into a multi-story car park, so your towing operator will need to send an appropriate vehicle.
You’ll need to coordinate with the property manager on this. It may be possible to move the car to a more convenient location or open special access points that allow a tow truck to reach your car.