We’re pleased to be taking part in this year’s 30 Days 30 Ways, and as our volunteers often need to take to the road in poor weather conditions we know a thing or two about staying safe.
Sometimes, no matter what we drive, something will go wrong and you find yourself and your family stuck at the side of the road with a broken vehicle. It’s a dangerous place to be, particularly on Motorways where the hard shoulder is where you are most at risk of being involved in an accident. Knowing what to do to stay safe could make at the difference.
If the worst happens:
- Stop in as safe a place as possible, ideally off the carriageway
- Get everyone out of the vehicle, through doors on the nearside furthest from the traffic if possible – even if it’s cold or raining!
- Stand in a safe place, behind the barrier if there is one. Do not stand in front of your vehicle in case someone collides with it, pushing it forwards.
- Call for assistance using a roadside emergency phone instead of a mobile: the control room can identify exactly where you are and send help more easily
- If you need to use a mobile phone, use the reference numbers on the roadside markers that are on all Motorways and some A roads to help them locate you.
- Do not attempt to make repairs yourself, especially on the offside nearest to the traffic
- Carry warm, waterproof clothing in case of bad weather, some bottled water and something to eat in case of an extended wait. In summer, a hat and suncream might be needed too, or an umbrella to use as a sun shade for young children.
Taking a few minutes to check your vehicle once a week will reduce the chances of a breakdown, and knowing where your car’s wheel nut key and towing eye are kept will help the mechanic get you back underway more quickly.
We know to plan ahead and carry extra things with us when traveling in cold winter weather, but you are just as likely to get stuck in a traffic jam or accident in hot summer weather where there’s a risk dehydration or heatstroke – particularly with younger children.
Take a photo of your car’s emergency equipment, for example the towing eye, wheel-nut key, toolkit, first aid kit or anything else you carry in case of an emergency. Share the photo on social media using #30days30waysUK and #DrivePrepared – and don’t forget to mention us @N44RT
This short video takes you on a tour of the things to check on your vehicle to reduce the chances of a breakdown when you’re on the road.
30 Days 30 Ways continues throughout September: sign-up to receive your daily challenge and catch-up with any you’ve missed.