Feel vulnerable driving alone?
Many people feel vulnerable when driving alone. The risks can be exaggerated but it still pays to use some common sense if you are travelling by yourself.
At Aviva, we have the right advice that will help get you to your destination safely and with a little more peace of mind.
- DO make sure you have car breakdown cover - don't ever leave it to chance.
DO plan your route and always carry an up-to-date map.
- Think about buying a satellite navigation system if you don't have one.
- They've never been cheaper to buy.
- DO fill up with fuel before you leave.
- DO keep your valuables out of sight and always lock your doors when you go to pay after filling up.
- DO tell family or friends when to expect you.
- DO keep a fully-charged mobile phone with you.
- DO lock your car doors while on the move.
- DO put your handbag under the seat so it's out of sight.
If you think you are being followed
- DON'T stop and DON'T drive home.
- DO slow down and let the other vehicle pass you.
- DO lock your doors and close any windows.
- DO stay calm.
- DO take the vehicle's registration number if you can.
DO drive to a public place like a petrol station.
- Dial 999, sound your horn and flash your lights to attract attention.
- Don't worry if you haven't got a mobile signal - 999 calls are carried on an emergency cellular channel and will get through.
DO keep well back from the car in front if you come to a junction.
- Keep your wheels turned outward while stationary
- You will have room to make a quick escape.
Breaking down: non-motorway roads
- DO keep a fully charged mobile phone with you.
- DO know your location.
- DO call your rescue service immediately.
DO lock your doors, put on your hazard lights and sit in the passenger seat if not on the motorway.
- It'll look to others like you have someone with you.
Breaking down: on the motorway
- DO pull onto the hard shoulder - or a service station if your car will make it.
DO get out of the car via the passenger door and up the bank to a safe place if you break down on the hard shoulder - unless you feel at risk from another person.
- ONLY stay in the car if you do feel at risk from another person: lock your doors, call your rescue service on your mobile and/or wait for a police patrol to stop.
- Do sit in the passenger seat to make it look like you have company.
- Leave the car using the passenger door when you feel the risk has passed and choose a safe place to wait on the embankment.
If you haven't got a mobile and someone comes up to you while using an emergency roadside phone, tell the operator and give a description of the individual.
When help arrives, ask to see their ID - they won't be offended as they will understand your anxiety.