What to do if your car breaks down


Most of the time, you would not anticipate that your car could break down, but an estimated 7,000 breakdowns occur in the UK every single day! If you found yourself at the mercy of an unforeseen breakdown, would you know what to do? Here are our top tips for what you should do in the event of your vehicle coming to an unexpected halt:


  1. Use the hard shoulder and use your lights.

If you can access the hard shoulder, pull over as soon as you can and turn on your hazard lights and side lights. It is also wise to turn your wheels to point away from the road.

  1. Wear a reflective high visibility vest.

Reflective high visibility vests are generally inexpensive to buy and do not take up much room in your vehicle, but they will help to alert other drivers to your presence, especially when it is dark.

  1. Exit from the furthest door from the road and go to a safe distance.

Do not exit the car from the roadside door unless it is unavoidable. Once you are out, move to a safe distance away from your vehicle as soon as possible. If there is an embankment, take yourself up it and if there is a barrier, get behind it if possible. Only place a red warning triangle if it is safe to do so, on a fast busy road, it is not worth risking your life to place it.

  1. Do not try to repair the car yourself.

Do not put yourself in danger trying to fix the car yourself, instead call a breakdown service provider to come to your assistance.

  1. Inform the local authorities of the hazard.

Use a roadside SOS phone, or your mobile if there is not one close by, to inform the local authorities about your broken-down vehicle, as it could be hazardous to other road users.


  1. Pull over to a safe place and turn on your hazard lights.

If you can, find a safe place to pull over your vehicle keeping it as far away from the road traffic as possible. Once you have stopped, turn on your hazard lights, and your side lights too if visibility could be impaired.

  1. Exit your car and move to safe distance to assess the situation.

Exit your car so long as it is safe to do so and get to a safe distance away from the vehicle to assess the situation. If you cannot safely exit your vehicle, remain seated and alert with your seat belt securely fastened.

  1. Put on your high visibility vest and place your red warning triangle.

Make use of your reflective high visibility vest and, if it is safe to do so, place a reflective warning triangle around 50 meters behind your vehicle to alert other drivers of the hazard ahead.

  1. Get back into your vehicle and secure your seatbelt.

Unlike the advice for motorways and dual carriageways, on a single carriageway road the RSA advise that the safest place for you to wait for assistance is inside your vehicle, just makes sure you have your seatbelt securely fastened and remain alert.

  1. Call the local authorities and your breakdown service provider.

Once you are safely strapped into your vehicle, call the local authorities to inform them of the hazard and then call your breakdown service provider so that they can assist you.

Premier Components UK Ltd.
Unit 701
Meon Vale Business Park
Campden Road
CV37 8QR

Tel: +44(0) 1789 720 061
Company Number: 03577119
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