Teen Driver Safety: Top Five Things to Remember if Your VehicleBreaks Down AutoMD.com offers teen drivers roadside safety tips during NationalYouth Traffic Safety Month CARSON, CA -- May 17, 2012 : May is National Youth Traffic Safety Month, and with an averageof 45 youths lost every summer weekend in motor vehicle crashes(1)AutoMD.com is providing teen drivers with important tips to staysafe both on and off the road if they encounter a breakdown. "According to parents, a majority of teen drivers(2) are relatively'clueless' about general auto repair and vehicle maintenance,including the simple task of filling the gas tank. We suspect thatbecause teen drivers have limited experience on the road, they mayalso be 'clueless' on what to do and how to stay safe on theroadside if their car breaks down," said Brian Hafer , VP of Marketing for AutoMD.com. "Our Teen Auto Repair andMaintenance Guide not only includes important tips on vehiclerepair and maintenance, but also offers advice on what to do in theevent of a break down while driving, and how to stay safe whilethey are on the side of the road." Top Five Things to Remember if Your Vehicle Breaks Down* Get your car off the road -- If your car stops running properly, and if you can, move yourvehicle to the right-hand side of the roadway as soon as possible.Avoid stopping your car in an active traffic lane. Once you havemoved your car safely to the side of the road, apply your parkingbrake and turn your steering wheel in the opposite direction of theroad so your vehicle doesn't accidentally roll into traffic. |
Call for help -- Make sure to have a working cell phone in your possession atall times, in case of an emergency. Have emergency assistance /roadside assistance numbers handy if your insurance provides it, orif you belong to AAA. AutoMD Mobile also offers auto repair infoon-the-go, giving stranded drivers clues to diagnose their problem,and helps them find a local repair shop. And, like every good boyor girl scout, always be prepared -- carry items such asflashlights, flares or hazard triangles, a first aid kit andblankets in your car -- in case of a roadside breakdown. Alert others with lights and signals -- Remember to immediately turn on your emergency flashers tosignal a problem.
Once stopped, if it is safe to exit the vehicle,use flares or hazard triangles to alert other motorists of aproblem and place the flare or triangle approximately 50 feetbehind your car to give other motorists adequate notice. Also,raise your car hood or tie a white cloth to your door handle as asignal for police help or assistance from passersby. Stay in your car unless it is absolutely unsafe to do so -- It is best to stay in your car while waiting for help to arriveif your car is safely out of traffic. Stay inside the vehicle withyour doors locked and your seatbelt fastened. Getting out of yourcar, even when parked along the roadside makes you a pedestrian andthe roadway is no place for a pedestrian.
According to a governmentreport(3), 4,000 pedestrians are struck and killed each year, andabout 700 of those pedestrians are people working in the roadway.Exercise caution when accepting help from strangers. If you aresuspicious, don't open your door. Instead, lower your window enoughto talk and let them know help is on the way, or to ask them tomake a phone call for you. If you absolutely must exit the car, usethe door on the opposite side of the roadway, remember to NEVERstep into the road, and always look out for traffic and moving carsaround you. Tire trouble -- If you have a flat tire or a tire blowout, pull onto a flatarea if possible so that a car jack can be used safely andproperly.
If you have never changed a flat tire, do not attempt totry it for the first time when you are pulled over on the side ofthe road. AutoMD.com's Teen Driver Car Maintenance and Repair Guideoffers step-by-step instruction on how to change a flat tire, aswell as other basic vehicle maintenance and repair instructions.Practice these repairs in advance with a parent or otherresponsible adult. Also, it is a good idea to carry tools in theevent of an emergency, such as a jack, wrenches, screwdrivers, andbe sure you have a properly inflated spare tire in your car -- youmight be surprised to learn that many automakers are not providinga spare tire in new vehicles(3). AutoMD.com says that understanding the fundamentals of car repairknowledge is just as (if not more!) important for the safety ofteen drivers as for the general population, which is why thecompany developed a car repair educational resource specificallyfor teens.
Features of the guide include: 1) A vehicle diagram and glossary to help teens identify keycomponents of a car 2) A Do-It-Yourself (DIY) vehicle maintenance checklist 3) DIY vehicle repair instructions for basic maintenance/repairjobs 4) A list of car maintenance and repair "Tips and Tricks" 5) Car repair safety information 6) Roadside safety tips 7) A car maintenance quiz 8) A Certificate of Commitment To access the AutoMD.com Teen Driver Car Maintenance and RepairGuide, visit: AutoMD Teens .
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