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What To Do In The Event Of A Breakdown, Being Pulled Over Or Being In An Accident

There are some perfect, or be it lucky drivers out there. There are people who seem to never have car trouble, never get in an accident, or never even get a ticket. For most of us however, one of the three has happened at least once. There are things that should be done if any or all three events occur.

You are driving along a pretty busy highway when all of a sudden your tire blows. The first thing to do is to try and maintain control of the vehicle. When control is achieved immediately signal to leave your lane, and enter the breakdown lane or appropriate shoulder, as carefully as possible. Once in the breakdown lane, immediately turn on your hazard signals, and come to a controlled stop. Trying to change a tire on a busy highway is a dangerous situation, and should only be performed in a breakdown lane or shoulder that is several feet away from passing traffic. If you decide not to change the tire yourself, call a road service company or the highway patrol, and remain in your vehicle until help arrives, this goes for any type of break-down that may occur. Several people are killed each year as pedestrians on the highway as they attempt to repair their car, or are just outside the vehicle waiting for assistance.

Being pulled over by the police can be unnerving for anyone. If you believe it is a legitimate law officer attempting to stop you, pull over as soon as possible as long as it is safe to do so. If the vehicle seems suspicious to you, since it may be unmarked, pull over but call the police to verify the identity of the officer. When it is determine it is a legitimate traffic stop, do not make any sudden movements, and obey the officer’s instructions.  If you feel that you have done no wrong do not get into an argument with the officer, arguing could only make matters worse, responding calm, cool and collected may make the officer let you off with a warning. If after all this you still receive a citation, again, save the argument for a court date to appeal the ticket.

The scariest situation of all three is the traffic accident. It is helpful to keep a pen and paper handy if an accident happens. If you are in an accident with minor damage, pull over safely and exchange information with the other driver. Do not try and discuss who is at fault, and don’t admit fault even if you believe the accident was due to your driving. Write down the other driver’s license plate, and ask to see their license and registration. Even if there appears to be no damage and no injuries, still obtain all the information, do not let the other party try to brush off the incident. There could be unseen damage to the vehicle, or injuries that can’t be immediately felt. Also, note all individuals at the accident, some parties try to add occupants to vehicles after an accident in order to fake injuries and obtain more claim money. Finally, if the accident does seem serious enough, or the other party is not cooperating, call the police immediately for assistance. Most accidents reported to an insurance carrier will require a police report regardless.

If you are one of the lucky ones maybe none of these unfortunate incidents may happen to you. If you are not so lucky, being prepared and aware is a great tool to have against any problem that may arise when on the road.