5 Things to Do When You Need Roadside Assistance

Aug 15, 2018

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5 Things to Do When You Need Roadside Assistance

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It’s always a hassle when your vehicle breaks down, but we rarely think about it until it happens. These tips from OnStar will help minimize your stress, so if it happens, you’re prepared.

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It’s always a hassle when your vehicle breaks down, but we rarely think about it until it happens. These tips from OnStar will help minimize your stress, so if it happens, you’re prepared.

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Getting stranded is a hassle. Here’s how to take away the stress

A breakdown on the road. It’s something that inevitably happens to every driver, whether it’s a flat tire, dead battery or some other issue. But don’t worry: If you have OnStar, all you need to do is push a button to request Roadside Assistance*17 from an OnStar Advisor, who will contact a local service provider to send help. Here are five things to know before a breakdown to help everything go as smoothly as possible.

Prepare an Emergency Kit

We’ve talked before about essential items you should have in your car for situations just like this, and it’s worth looking those over again before you hit the road. While the contents may differ depending on the climate where you live, your emergency supplies should always include a first aid kit, jumper cables, flares or reflective triangles, a flashlight, snacks and bottled water.

Get to Safety

If something happens to your vehicle when you’re on the road, pull over as soon as it’s safe to do so. If you’re on the highway, exit as quickly as possible and find a nearby parking lot. If that’s not possible, pull onto the shoulder as far away from the road on the right-hand side as you are able to. If there’s no shoulder or you’re in a tunnel, pull as far to the right as possible.

Increase Your Visibility

Highway driving can be monotonous, which means other drivers may not be paying as much attention as they should be. If you have a breakdown, keep your emergency flashers and headlights on, even if you’re on the shoulder. Try to avoid spots where the vision of oncoming drivers may be impeded, such as after a sharp turn. Put down reflective triangles or road flares to notify oncoming drivers, but only if it is safe to do so.

Exit the Vehicle Only When It’s Safe to Do So

Do not exit the vehicle until you are clear of the road, and then only on the right side of the vehicle away from traffic. If you’re in an area where there’s no safe space for you to wait, such as a road with no shoulder, do not exit the vehicle. Keep all of your lights on, including your emergency flashers and interior lights, stay buckled in and wait for help to arrive.

Practice Patience

Once you’ve contacted OnStar and an Advisor has told you that help is on the way, it’s best to wait for the professionals rather than trying to deal with it yourself or flag someone else down — especially if you’ve broken down on the highway. Fixing a flat a few feet away from vehicles traveling at highway speeds is incredibly dangerous.