What to Do If Your Car Breaks Down and You've Got Kids in the Car

2 July 2020
 Categories: , Blog

Even if it has never happened to you, you will probably know what to do if your car breaks down while you're out and about. As the engine takes its last breath, you need to use your remaining momentum to safely maneuver your vehicle to the side of the road. Then it's just a case of calling for emergency towing. This type of motoring mishap is generally easier to deal with when you're alone. However, it can become more complicated when you have young children in the car with you.

1. Consider the Weather

Ideally, the climate will be accommodating when you break down. When it's not too hot, you and your children can wait in your vehicle without its internal temperature becoming uncomfortable or potentially hazardous. If possible, keep your children buckled in their seatbelts. This is just in case another vehicle should run into you while you're stationary. It's highly unlikely but still put safety first. If there is a safe space close to where you broke down, you and your children can leave the vehicle and wait there. You don't get to pick the weather or the time of year when you might break down, so you can't rely on a comfortable temperature on the day in question.

2. Get Your Kids Home

When the day is hot, it might be impractical to expect young children to wait in or around your vehicle. Consider contacting a family member or friend to collect the children, take them home, and then supervise them while you wait with the vehicle. Alternatively, if someone can supervise your children but is unable to collect them, you could bring your children home using a taxi or ride-hailing service. In this case, be sure to schedule a time with the towing company. You generally need to wait with your vehicle, but if you need to attend to your children prior to your car being towed, an immediate, emergency towing service might arrive while you're away. Request a specific time (if possible) so you can take your children to safety before returning to your vehicle. If you were out shopping, don't forget about the groceries in the boot. 

3. Prepare for the Tow

Clearing out the contents of the car is always wise before it's towed, and it becomes even more important when you were travelling with young children. In addition to your own belongings, make a thorough check of the back seats. A favourite toy or discarded snack might easily have been dropped under one of the front seats. Make sure you remove anything your kids might have left behind, then remove all food scraps as they could easily turn rancid while your car is being repaired.

If you should break down while you have your kids in the car, you might have to attend to their needs before you can worry about your vehicle. If you're unsure what to do, explain your situation to an emergency towing company and they'll talk you through your options.