Breakdown Insurance and roadside assistance are two forms of insurance that can help with your vehicular emergency preparedness, along with your standard liability and collision coverage, of course. Regardless of the season, it is a good idea to think ahead toward possible incidents, accidents and disasters. A man once told his wife, “Worry is like a rocking chair. You fret and fret, and it doesn’t get you anywhere.” She glared at him and replied, “It does when you worry constructively.”
Driving an automobile is likely to be something to which you don’t give a lot of thought, especially if you commute regularly. Liability insurance coverage is mandated in many states, and if you have a car loan, you are probably required to carry collision insurance. But what about all those other things that can go wrong? A little constructive worry in the short term, otherwise known as contingency planning, can save a lot of trouble in the long run.
If you purchased your vehicle new or nearly new you probably acquired a warranty along with the rest of the purchase papers. You might have even purchased an extended warranty. But a warranty rarely exceeds the first year or two of the life of your vehicle. If you purchase breakdown insurance before the vehicle is 15 months old and while it has fewer than 15,000 miles on it, you are likely to be able to have insurance coverage for major repairs up through seven years of use or 100,000 miles – whichever comes first.
Unlike breakdown insurance, there is no time limit on roadside assistance. Whereas breakdown insurance will take care of those big bills, roadside assistance might have some additional fees attached to it if it involves more than basic assistance. It will certainly cover towing and is likely to help out with things like changing tires, recharging your battery, or bringing a can of gasoline. Where policies vary is whether you might have to pay for a tire, or a new battery, even though the service person will install it for you.
Simple things can make a difference in an emergency. One of the easiest is to make sure you have an up-to-date copy of your proof of insurance in your vehicle. Keep a DC plugin in good working order so you can keep your phone charged. Carry water and a simple snack food, such as those prepackaged cracker and cheese sandwiches in a vermin proof container. One of those foil blankets is handy, as well. It can help keep you warm in winter or be rigged as a shade in summer. Emergencies aren’t always on the order of a zombie apocalypse. Sometimes they are just having to wait a long time for a construction crew to let you go on through or for a wrecker to clean a stalled vehicle from the road. When those things happen, having a few comfort items for yourself or your family can help ease the waiting time.
Just fretting won’t get you very far but constructive worry or planning can keep small troubles from becoming large ones. By having a good insurance policy, keeping a few moderate emergency supplies in your vehicle, you are prepared to make it through the small delays and niggling setbacks as well as having some resources for the big problems if they should happen to arise. Worry might be like a rocking chair, but a good rocking chair can be a very comforting piece of furniture – just ask any parent who has tried to put a fussy baby back to bed after the three am feeding.