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We’ve all been there, the low fuel light comes on the dashboard and instant panic sets in. Palms are sweaty, heart starts racing and all you can think about is that long queue of unhappy drivers sitting behind you when you’ve broken down. Even worse, if you get into an accident whilst stationary due to becoming a hazard on the road. Hopefully, that never happens but if it does, here are a few things you can do to make it a little less stressful to deal with.

Step away from the car

This is important. Don’t hang around – put your hazard lights on (even during the day), check your car is in neutral then jump out when it’s safe to do so and make sure you’re well away from it. This lets other drivers know that you’re immobilised and increases the chances of oncoming vehicles seeing you. If they don’t see you and someone ends up crashing into your vehicle, read further for next steps…

Time to make a call

Now’s the time to pluck up the courage and admit you’ve got yourself into a pickle. Here’s your ‘I-ran-out-of-fuel… and then got into an accident’ phone list:

• If it’s not your fault and you need a replacement car, call a member of our friendly team on 1800 699 034.
• Friends and family that can come and help – preferably the ones who give good hugs.
• Your insurance company for roadside assistance and, of course, to liaise with the other driver’s insurance company for the damages.
• Roadside response can also help by coming to you – call them on 1300 468931.
• As a last resort, call triple zero (000) if you don’t have signal.

Hit the road Jack! And don’t you come back no more…

If you can get hold of a tow company, do so immediately. This way, you’re no longer a hazard for other drivers on the road. And whatever you do, be cautious accepting help from strangers if they don’t seem trustworthy – all you need to say is thanks but help is on the way.

Don’t make the same mistake

Grandads around the globe always say ‘we all learn from our mistakes’, and in this instance, we hope you don’t have to. So, plan ahead and download Fuel Map Australia, which lists petrol stations all around Aus. As an added bonus, it also features real-time fuel prices in WA, NSW and QLD so you can budget ahead too.

Most importantly, if you ran out of fuel and another driver didn’t take note of your precautions, then make sure you claim your not at fault accident replacement vehicle today.