Missouri Highway Patrol anticipates increase in calls for roadside assistance
JOPLIN, MISSOURI -
With the upcoming holiday weekend, Missouri Highway Patrol officials say they anticipate an increase in the number of calls for roadside assistance.
It's something that can happen to anyone at anytime.
"I got to the side of the road, and I just stayed in my car," said Angie Kilmer, Joplin resident.
"Especially in the summertime, it's miserable, absolutely miserable," said Frankie Drury, Joplin resident.
With warmer temperatures, comes an increased chance of having problems with your vehicle, potentially leaving you stranded on the side of the road.
"When the weather gets to the point where it's really extremely hot, you lift that hood up and everything underneath is hot," said Bill Cottrill, owner of Cottrill's Towing in Joplin. "It's 200 plus degrees, so anything underneath there, it takes a chance of breaking."
Cottrill says he anticipates 20 to 30 percent more calls this weekend due to more people traveling for the holiday.
"If we get real busy, it could increase your time of arrival a little bit," he said.
Missouri Highway Patrol officials recommend that drivers keep their cell phones fully charged, and say by calling (star)*55, you can contact the nearest state highway patrol office directly.
"I have GPS on my phone, so if I break down and I don't know exactly where I'm at, I can use the GPS to help someone find me," Kilmer said.
Highway patrol officials also recommend opening your hood as a universal sign to other drivers you are having problems, as well as turn on hazard lights, and pull over as far to the right as possible.
They say to avoid lingering outside your vehicle, and have water with you if you can.
Officials encourage drivers to be prepared, and Cottrill is prepared also.
"We're ready," he said. "We're ready to roll."
Officials with the Missouri Highway Patrol also recommend you stay inside your car with seat belt fastened when broken down, so that the structure of the vehicle will provide some extra protection should another vehicle crash into you.
(star) *47 will get you the highway patrol in Kansas.