Road safety charity the IAM is offering weekly motoring tips from Britain’s top advanced driver, Peter Rodger.
This week, he is advising on what to do if your car breaks down:
· Plan ahead: keep a reflective jacket, warm waterproof clothes and a torch in your car. Put the number of your breakdown company and your membership number in your phone. Some breakdown services offer free mobile phone apps, often even if you are not a member. Use the phone’s GPS system to find your precise location.
· Get out of the vehicle by the left-hand door and make sure all your passengers do the same. If you have a high-viz jacket, put it on and make sure everyone is standing well away from moving traffic. If there is a safety barrier, wait behind it.
· Where possible, coast to an emergency telephone. If you use your mobile phone, you may be asked to give the number on the nearest marker post, located every 100 meters or on a square blue sign every 500 metres.
· Don’t attempt a repair on the hard shoulder of a motorway, call your breakdown company.
· If you feel threatened by someone, get in the passenger seat, lock the door and dial 999.
· Be safe and be patient while you wait for help to arrive.
IAM chief examiner Peter Rodger said: “Breaking down is stressful, but be prepared by knowing what to do and when. Thinking about these things in advance will place you in a better position in case it happens and relieve some of the strain.”