When you experience car trouble while you are driving, it can be scary. People worry about getting to their destinations on time or the potential costs involved with car repairs. In order to help them to make things right, people rely on the services offered by roadside assistance companies. The brave employees of these companies can come to your rescue in a matter of minutes, helping you to arrive safely to wherever you needed to go in the first place. Unfortunately, roadside assistance work is dangerous, and these employees don't usually get the respect that they deserve. Here are two real dangers that roadside assistance workers face every day, so that you don't have to.
1: Being Hit By Other Cars
If you have a tire pop or have to deal with sudden engine trouble in the middle of a busy road, your only option might be to pull over and wait for roadside assistance. After you call for help, roadside assistance will rush to your aid. Unfortunately, dealing with repairs and paperwork in areas where heavy traffic abounds can be dangerous for workers.
Because roadside specialists have to park near the problematic car, walk to the area, and help the stranded motorist, they are at an increased risk of being struck by another vehicle. Oftentimes, other drivers get curious about people that experience car trouble or accidents, and tend to drive a little too close to the stuck vehicle.
Recently, many states have recognized the dangers that tow truck drivers and other emergency responders face while doing their jobs. In order to keep people from driving too close to accidents or stranded motorists, some states have passed laws that require other drivers to move into a lane away from stuck vehicles. In Maryland, for example, they passed a bill that allows officers to issue tickets of up to $500 to people who travel too closely to roadside assistance situations.
In order to help to protect other motorists and to avoid getting a ticket, always steer clear of stranded vehicles. Travel slowly through areas of trouble, and always try to move over into other vacant lanes.
2: Driving In Dangerous Conditions
If you decide to drive during inclement weather, you might be more susceptible to accidents. Unfortunately, roadside assistance workers are also exposed to these dangers.
Mark Kovitch, a tow truck driver in Pennsylvania, was killed in 2004 as he tried to attend to a stranded motorist that had slid off of the freeway into a ditch. The other driver lost control of his car on the icy roads, and slammed into Mr. Kovitch. These kinds of accidents are not uncommon, but they aren't the only types of accidents that can be caused by bad weather.
Because emergency responders travel to areas where people have had problems with road conditions, they are more likely to experience the same types of situations. For example, a tow truck that travels to an icy patch of interstate isn't immune from sliding off of the road or dealing with sharp wreckage. Oftentimes, responders are faced with traversing down steep embankments, travelling through thick mud, or dealing with deep water.
If you are ever stranded because of dangerous road conditions, remember to be patient with emergency responders. They have to confront all of the same dangers that you face, while they are trying to attend to your needs. Keep in mind that icy roads, hailstorms, flood conditions, or deep snow can slow down response times, because responders and roadside service have to be careful too.
When you work to understand and appreciate the efforts of roadside assistance workers, you might be able to remain calmer during emergency settings, and be more polite to hardworking helpers.Share