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Risky Behaviour During Motorway Breakdowns

According to a recent study, nearly eight out of 10 (78%) private and motor trade drivers in the United Kingdom unknowingly put themselves in peril by stopping on the hard shoulder when experiencing a breakdown on the motorway.

The study, involving 1,900 drivers, highlights that only a fifth (22%) of respondents would follow proper safety measures after breaking down on a cold and wet winter’s night.

Motorway Breakdown

In the event of an accident on the motorway, the right course of action is to stand to the rear of their vehicle and position themselves as far as possible from traffic, preferably behind a barrier if available.

Alarmingly, one in 10 (11%) would opt to stay inside their vehicle, exposing themselves to significant risk if another vehicle collided with them.

Furthermore, two-thirds (65%) would inadvertently endanger themselves by standing in front of or next to their broken-down vehicle, making them susceptible to collisions.

Shockingly, this aligns with motor trade surveys that have been carried out, which reveal that 78% of drivers attended to after breaking down on motorways remained inside their vehicles upon arrival.

It comes as recently, UK motorway signage could soon be changing for the better after the National Highways revealed the winner of its gantry competition, which aimed at revolutionising motorway and A road signs.

The winning entry featured a simple, pared-back design focused on elegance and sustainability. National Highways plans to implement the streamlined design over the coming years, aiming for a more efficient, standardised structure with reduced environmental impact and lower operational costs.

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Everyone will be delighted to learn that the winning gantry is projected to use less steel, thereby reducing embodied carbon and utilising pre-weathered steel for durability. This eco-friendly approach aligns with National Highways’ goal to create a visually pleasing and sustainable infrastructure for all motorists.

The new gantry design is anticipated to become the standard for new roads and significant upgrades, contributing to safer, more environmentally conscious roadways.

Our Safety Tips for Motorway Breakdowns:

  1. Pull over on the hard shoulder if available.
  2. Always keep an eye on the traffic.
  3. Turn on hazard lights and sidelights.
  4. Stay calm and wait for a motor trade professional, like roadside breakdown recovery.
  5. Activate rear fog lights in poor visibility conditions.
  6. Exit the vehicle safely, using doors furthest from traffic.
  7. Wear bright or high-visibility clothing.
  8. Stand behind safety barriers if present; if not, stand to the vehicle’s rear, far from traffic.

If you don’t have any roadside recovery insurance in place, speak to your insurance provider, who will be able to offer some advice on this matter.