7- Safety Advice

Breaking down anywhere can be a real nightmare but when it happens on a motorway or busy dual carriageway it can make things seem much worse. Below are some guidelines which can help you to stay safe until professional help arrives.

  • Motorway hard shoulders are for emergency use only and you should only stop there if it is a real emergency and you have no other choice. Try to drive to a safer place off the motorway if you can, rather than stopping on the hard shoulder.
  • If an emergency forces you to stop, then Use the hard shoulder as a deceleration lane before coming to a halt.
  • Pull over to the left as far as you can and turn your front wheels towards the nearside verge.
  • Turn on your hazard lights. Also turn on your sidelights when visibility is poor.
  • You are the best person to decide what is safest for you, but it is recommended that You and any occupants leave the vehicle via the passenger doors and move as far away from the traffic as you can..
  • You don't attempt to repair your vehicle on a hard shoulder. It is highly dangerous, particularly on the side nearest the traffic.
  • If you can't use a mobile phone then use a motorway telephone to get professional help be particularly careful to stay away from the traffic. Motorway telephones are linked to motorway police control centres, allowing them to pinpoint your position and get help to you quickly. Motorway telephones are never more than one mile apart. A blue and white marker post is placed at every 100 metres, with an arrow to point you in the direction of the nearest phone.
  • When you return to your vehicle the safest place for you and any passengers to wait for help to arrive is behind the crash barrier if there is one, or near your vehicle on the embankment or adjacent land.
  • There is a perception that a 'lone female' is at risk of being attacked on a motorway hard shoulder. Research shows that the risk of being hit by another vehicle is much greater.
  • Once your vehicle is repaired, return to the motorway by using the hard shoulder as an acceleration lane, merging with the traffic in lane one when you have reached a similar speed and there is an appropriate gap.
  • You should be properly prepared for your journey, Take food and drinks, especially at the height of summer or at winter time, if cold weather is expected you should also carry a blanket, shovel and a warm drink when on long journeys.