When your vehicle stalls while driving it is not only a pain but it can also be very dangerous.
Many freeways only have small shoulders to pull your vehicle on to so be careful, especially if you have a flat tire or broken axle. If possible use your turn signals to alert other drivers and when possible turn on your flashers.
If you are next to fast moving traffic it is always best to stay in your vehicle. If you have to exit your vehicle and if possible do so from the side of the vehicle that is away from traffic. While outside of your vehicle never let your eyes off of the traffic.
If you have to leave your vehicle, make sure that you leave your emergency flashers on which will let authorities know that the vehicle is not abandoned. In some cases the vehicle will be towed immediately if found unattended if left in a “Tow Away Zone”. The fee for an impound tow is $177.00 for the tow, about $50-$60 per day for storage and $88 for an after hours gate fee, so take this into consideration before leaving your vehicle. A note left on the windshield may help in some cases as well as calling the Washington State Patrol. There is a link the WSP’s website on our “Links” page.
Even if you only have a flat tire that you can change by yourself it may be wise to call a tow truck if you, your tools or your vehicle are not all of the way off the road. It only takes one driver not paying attention to the road ahead to cause serious injury or worse, a fatality. A good reminder is the guy towing a trailer with a pickup on it who stopped on Highway 14 a number of years back to check his load. As he jumped down off of his trailer he was struck by a passing vehicle and died from his injuries.
The Washington State Department of Transportation says to “Move Over & Slow Down for Emergency Vehicles” but in reality this should be done for any vehicle that is on the side of the road. Please share and drive safely out there on the road.