How to deal with driving emergencies?

If a tire blows out:

  1. Keep a firm hold on the steering wheel.
  2. Steer straight ahead.
  3. Remove your foot from the accelerator slowly. Do not brake yet.
  4. When the car has almost stopped, apply the brakes.

If your power steering fails:

  1. You may need to use more force than usual to turn the wheel. If the engine stalls, you will not have power steering, but you can still turn the steering wheel.
  2. Drive to the side of the road safely.
  3. Stop the vehicle. If the car has power brakes, you may need to push the brake pedal harder than usual.

If your steering wheel suddenly stops controlling your vehicle:

  1. Slowly remove your foot from the accelerator.
  2. Activate your hazard lights.
  3. Avoid braking – the car will naturally continue going straight, and braking could cause it to swerve.
  4. As your car slows, brake gradually until the car stops.

If your headlights fail:

  1. Turn on your parking lights, turn signals, and flashers.  They may provide enough light for you to drive away from the road safely.
  2. Leave the roadway as soon as you can.  Keep your hazard lights on to warn other drivers.

If your accelerator becomes stuck:

  1. Shift gears to neutral (N).
  2. Apply your brakes.
  3. Focus on the road.
  4. Search for ways out of your current path.
  5. Turn on your hazard lights to warn other drivers.
  6. Drive safely off the road if you can.
  7. When you no longer need to change direction, turn off your engine.

If your windshield wipers fail:

  1. Decrease your speed.
  2. Try to turn the wipers on and off several times.
  3. If this does not work, pull to the side of the road.
  4. If necessary, open your window and stick your head out to see enough to pull over.

If your engine overheats:

Driving in stop-and-go traffic in hot weather, driving on steep inclines, and towing a trailer behind your vehicle can increase the engine's temperature. Keep an eye on the temperature gauge and watch for overheating.

To avoid engine overheating:

  1. Do not drive at fast speeds for long periods of time.
  2. In stop-and-go traffic, drive in low gear.
  3. If the engine overheats, turn off the air conditioning.
  4. If you are stopped in traffic, put the car in Park (P) and lightly press the accelerator; this will circulate coolant throughout the engine.
  5. If your temperature warning light comes on, or if the temperature gauge points to the red zone, pull off the road immediately. Turn off the engine.
  6. If your engine catches fire, stop the car as soon as you can safely. Leave the roadway. Turn off the engine and get as far away from the car as you can.