avoid injury during car emergency situations

Survival Guide To Driving Emergencies

Emergency Situations

Car mechanics are experts when it comes to vehicles. However, not all drivers are car mechanics but that doesn’t mean that they should stay ignorant about various things about cars. There are basic car care things you should still know.

How about you? Would you consider yourself as an expert or someone who’s well-knowledgeable about cars? 

Nevertheless, whether you know a lot about cars or not, you should always come prepared and know what to do in case of driving emergencies. We’ve listed some of the driving emergencies plus tips on what to do in case those happen. With this guide, we hope your injuries would lessen and the damages to your car won’t be severe. 

Car Stalls Or Breaks Down In The Middle Of The Road

You should never stop your vehicle in the middle of the road unless you are following road laws or if your safety is in the line. Other cars on the road are moving and when you stop abruptly, there’s a chance for a crash to happen. 

In case your car breaks down, it won’t immediately stop. Use that momentum to try to go to the side of the road, away from traffic. Make sure that you are clearly visible from either direction. Your emergency lights or hazard lights will make you more visible so use them. 

Although there can be different car emergencies, the common thing that you should do for all of them is to refrain from panicking so you can think of what to do. 

Blown Tire

A blown tire can be startling because it can be accompanied by a loud sound. When this happens the first thing you do is to grip the steering wheel firmly and make sure you are steering straight. 

Next is to release the gas pedal and gently use your brakes only when your car is already under control. If you use the breaks too early, it would be more difficult to control your vehicle. Then, pull off on the side of the road. 

Failure to Steer

It can be alarming to notice that your car isn’t under your control when you steer it but it could happen. When it does, stop stepping on the gas, turn your emergency lights on. 

If you can’t steer your vehicle, you are going straight and it is clear ahead, you can just let the car decelerate on its own. 

On the other hand, if the road ahead isn’t clear, you could use your brakes. Be sure to carefully do this so that you don’t completely lose control of the vehicle.

Headlights Stop Working

When your headlights suddenly become dim or go off in the middle of the night, you should use your other lights. The high beams, as well as the hazard lights, can help you see the road until you can pull off somewhere safe where you can call for help. 

Gas Pedal Is Stuck

When the gas pedal is stuck, you can try to make it unstuck by using your foot to hook the pedal underneath and pull it upwards. Sometimes that works well but if not, then you should shift to neutral or step on the clutch. 

Then, use firm pressure on your brakes. Also, don’t forget to use your emergency lights or honk your horn to warn other people that you are experiencing a car emergency. 


There are many reasons why your car may skid. It could be due to your brakes, steering harshly while accelerating or when you are going too fast in difficult road conditions. 

To stop skidding, you have to figure out what causes you to skid. If it is due to the brakes, then release the brakes. On the other hand, if it is due to your acceleration, then release the gas pedal. 

If you are experiencing a rear-wheel skid,  use the steering wheel and turn in the direction of the skid. If your skid goes the opposite direction, follow that direction with your steering. You may have to repeat this several times for you to get back control over your vehicle. 

If it is a front-wheel skid, you should release the gas and select neutral for automatic vehicles or press the clutch for manual vehicles. Don’t steer until the traction returns. Once it returns, you can now steer in the direction you want to go. After which, you can drive your car as usual again. 

Another Car Is Coming At You

When another car is coming at you, do your best to get the attention of that car by flashing your high beams and using your horn. If the car doesn’t respond, steer towards the side of the road. It is best to go to the side of your lane because you could crash with other oncoming vehicles if you pull off to the left side of the road. 

Car Is On Fire

If your car is on fire, pull over immediately. Turn off the ignition, get out of the vehicle and run far away from the vehicle. It is best not to try to fight the fire on your own. Dousing it with water may seem a great idea to fight the fire but that could actually worsen the situation. 

Animal Crossing

Sometimes, animals can suddenly cross the road. When you see them, slow down as quickly as possible. However, don’t swerve because you can swerve right into another car as you avoid the animal. Also, even if you try swerving to avoid the animal, you could still hit it because it can suddenly change directions. 

Terry Wade

Terry Wade is a traveling Car Mechanic in Southfield Michigan. He's been repairing cars for nearly 20 years.
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TerrysArticles is brought to you by ME!, traveling Mechanic Terry Wade, I’m do my darndest to update the site with the best quality articles and news available on the internet and elsewhere to help you diagnose and fix your vehicle yourself.

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T Wade - At the Shop
T Wade - At the Shop

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