Dealing with Emergencies

Vehicle Breakdown

It is always said that one should always keep the vehicle maintained so that it doesn’t experiences any failure while you are on the move but any sort of mechanical failure in inevitable. A major mechanical failure can lead you to halt in the middle of the road. In case of two-wheeler, it is easier to tackle the situation as one can park the vehicle at roadside at a safe place and then call for help. For large vehicle such as passenger car of a heavy vehicle the case is different.

As per the Motor Vehicle Driving Regulations, 2017 the term Vehicle Breakdown is defined as: a vehicle with more than two wheels has broken down at a place where it can be recognised in time as a stationary obstacle. Whenever such breakdown is experienced, the vehicle user should take the following safety measures with the immediate effect:

  1. The hazard warning lights of the vehicle should be switched on immediately.
  2. On highways and major roads with fast speed, reflective traffic warning triangles should be placed at a distance of fifty meters behind the broken-down vehicle.
  3. If there is a bend on the road where the vehicle is parked, reflective traffic warning triangles should be placed before the bend.

Handling Various Vehicle Breakdown Situations

There are multiple types of vehicle breakdown that may occur. The measures to be taken in different situations is described hereunder.

Brake Failure

Pump the brake pedal; this might temporarily restore hydraulic brake pressure. If this does not work, gently apply the parking brake. Hold the release button while applying the parking brakes. Once you stop call for help. Do not drive the vehicle.

Accelerator Pedal Sticks

Lift the pedal by slipping your foot under it. Do not try to fiddle with the pedal with your hands. Do not brake hard. Turn on your emergency hazard lights, shift to neutral and stop the vehicle on the left shoulder of the road. Turn off the ignition and do not drive. Call for help.

Headlights Goes Out

Check the switch immediately. If the headlights don't work, turn on the emergency hazard lights immediately and bring your vehicle to a safe stop, off the road. Call for help. It is dangerous to drive at night without headlights.

Flat Tire

Blowout causes a lot of steering and wheel vibration. Immediately take your foot off the accelerator to slow down and steer the vehicle firmly in the direction you want to go. Bring the vehicle to a stop off the road. Put on the emergency hazard lights immediately. It is recommended to keep a spare tire in your vehicle. If you know how to change the tire, you may change it but before changing the tire please ensure that your vehicle is parked at safe place and is away from the approaching traffic. If you are unable to change the tire, please call for help.