While we generally think of modern cars as being almost bulletproof, there's still no escaping from the fact that they are very complex machines.
Tens of thousands of components all need to play nice with one another to create the mechanical orchestra that allows you to have your morning commute. Sometimes, even minor malfunctions can lead to your vehicle literally grinding to a halt.
And you've probably witnessed this happen to fellow motorists - bonnet up, at the side of the road and waiting for a tow. If you are unfortunate enough to have experienced a technical malfunction, just what should you do to ensure you remain safe? Here are a few tips!
Where Possible, Move The Car To The Side Of The Road
If you immediately feel something amiss with the car while driving, switch on the hazard lights to warn other road users that you will be travelling at a reduced pace. Move your car as far to the left as possible on the road while watching out for traffic. Stopping your car on the slower lanes would be significantly safer than doing so in the middle, or even the overtaking, lanes.
Warning Other Road Users
Switch on your hazard lights, and proceed to set up a breakdown triangle around 20 metres from the rear of the car. It also isn't unwise to open the bonnet or boot to make your situation more visible to other road users.
Don't assume that waiting in your car is the safest option as other cars might still collide with yours. All passengers should get out of the car and wait behind the guardrails on the expressway. The pavement would suffice if you've broken down on a normal road.
Calling A Tow Truck
Calling a tow truck or any roadside assistance should be your next move. After all, the longer you stay on the road, the more dangerous it can be for other road users. if you already have a preferred workshop and tow truck vendor, then proceed to use them.
If you are an Automobile Association of Singapore (AA) member, they will be able to provide towing services to either an AA listed workshop or your preferred one.
If you're on the expressway, the Expressway Monitory and Advisory System (EMAS) can help. Do note that they tow only to the nearest car park.
- AA Hotline: 6748 991
- EMAS Hotline: 1800-2255-582
If you do not have a workshop to fix your car, our Motor Directory would help you find a plethora of reputable workshops. They might be able to send out a tow truck to retrieve your stranded vehicle, and then proceed to diagnose and fix it!
Gathering Your Belongings And Arranging For Alternative Transport
Before the tow truck arrives, you may want to spend some time emptying the car of your valuables. This includes personal belongings, as well as items such as cash cards, or loose cash in the car itself.
You can also take this time to arrange for alternative transport once your vehicle has been dropped off at the workshop. Top tip - it perhaps isn't a bad idea to update the people that you were on your way to meet about having to either cancel the appointment or reschedule it! It's a breakdown, no one wants it, so we're sure they'd understand!
Maintenance Is Key!
(Photo Credit: Mach1 Services)
Whilst chances of breakdowns can be significantly reduced with routine car maintenance, there's nothing stopping a freak part failure, or a wear-and-tear item finally giving up the ghost, from literally causing your vehicle to grind to a halt.
We cannot stress enough the importance of preventative maintenance, which can be performed by one of our trusted mechanics in our Motor Directory. In fact, regular servicing is the cheapest way to insure against catastrophic mechanical failures in the long term!
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