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What Should You Do When Your Car Breaks Down at Night?

Steve Wagner

It’s a fear for many, but a reality for even more. If you’re driving for long, you’ll see a car broken down on the side of the road, and unless you’re just downright lucky, it will probably happen to you sooner or later.

Chances are you’ll break down during the day, and finding help will be fairly simple, but what do you do if you break down at night?

The truth is, night time breakdowns can be terrifying, and often deadly. Cars on the side of the road are difficult to see at night, and people outside of their cars can be in even more danger during dusk to sunrise hours because of decreased visibility. For example, you may remember the story from last year of the man who sustained serious injuries while attempting to jump start his car. A drunk driver swerved into him, and severely damaged his leg.

If you break down at night, here are a few reminders we want you to review to keep you and your loved ones safe:

  1. Pull over as far off the roadway as you can. If there is a narrow or no shoulder, get everyone out of the car and clear of the roadway as quickly as you can.
  2. Turn on your flashers. If you carry orange cones or flares with you, set them up quickly, giving cars enough warning to get around your vehicle.
  3. Call for help, dialing 911 or a local emergency number if you have one. Make sure to tell them the make and model of your car, as well as your location (note mile markers, exits, surrounding landmarks, etc).
  4. Be wary of accepting help from strangers. We hate to be skeptical, and we’re sure most people who offer to help have nothing but the best of intentions, but the safety of you and your family are more important – wait for the authorities. If someone offers help, you can thank them and tell them you have already contacted help and they will be there soon.
  5. If you are in inclement weather, try to stay in your vehicle (as long as it is safely off the road). If you must get out, do not stand in front of or behind your vehicle, as this will make you harder to see. Stand off the side of the road. If you plan to walk to seek help, leave your contact information on the car somehow, so authorities know how to reach you when they arrive.
  6. If you are involved in an accident, and your car didn’t just break down, remember to document the incident with pictures, call your insurance agent, and don’t sign anything until you’ve talked to your vehicular accident attorney at Wagner Reese!

Call the Accident Attorneys at Wagner Reese for Assistance

Wagner Reese may be able to help you recover damages from a car accident, and help you get back on your feet if the medical bills are piling up around you. Call us today at (888) 204-8440 to schedule a free consultation.


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