No one enjoys getting stuck on the side of the road due to an issue with their vehicle, but when you’re a disabled driver, breaking down can be more than just an inconvenience. That’s why, if you’re a driver with a disabled parking badge, it’s important to have roadside assistance lined up for unexpected situations you may encounter on the road. Here’s what you need to know to help you find the best disabled parking roadside assistance program.
Where To Get Disabled Parking Roadside Assistance
No doubt if you’ve Googled “roadside assistance with a disabled parking permit” or something to this effect, you’ve seen an overwhelming amount of choices. However, you may already have the opportunity to get roadside assistance with your vehicle and not be aware of it.
If you’ve purchased a vehicle modified for your disabilities through a dealer that is associated with the National Mobility Equipment Dealers Association (NMEDA), and if your vehicle is still under warranty, you can add 24-hour emergency roadside assistance coverage through this association.
If you don’t fall under that category, then there are many other places you can find disabled parking roadside assistance, including through AAA or the ADA Auto Club. But it’s important to understand what you need in order to find the roadside assistance membership that fits your unique needs.
What Kind of Coverage Should I Get?
It’s important to choose coverage that you can use in different vehicles so that even if you’re driving a rental vehicle or a car that belongs to friends or family, you can still get roadside assistance. This is important, because specialized roadside assistance coverage will often include:
- Towing assistance
- Wheelchair lift and ramp service
- Scooter or wheelchair assistance
- Wheelchair passenger transport
These options are often offered in conjunction with more traditional coverage options, such as:
- Assistance if you run out of gas
- Lost key assistance
- Lockout assistance
- Vehicle extraction or winching
- Battery service
When it comes to towing assistance, make sure to know all the details before you sign up. The company should provide you with a vehicle that is accessible to you for transportation when your car is towed, and they should also tow your car to the repair shop or dealership of your choosing. Also, make sure to check if there are mileage limits.
Some companies offer other types of coverage that can be bundled in with their roadside assistance plans, such as help finding accessible hotels and directions. Ask if there are any extra perks like these when you’re looking to sign up.
Tips for Successful Road Trips
Of course, making sure you have roadside assistance that will work with your disability is only one aspect of making sure all your bases are covered when you have a disability. You must also employ a few of these tips to make sure you’re safe and can care for yourself in the event that your vehicle breaks down.
You should be sure to pack any additional equipment you need, such as medical devices, and make sure to have with you any medications you may need if you get stranded. It’s a good idea to carry water and snacks with you as well, since you never know how long it could take for roadside assistance to show up – though hopefully, it won’t be too much of a wait!
Tips for Avoiding Breakdown
A breakdown with a handicap parking permit is just as much trouble, if not more so, than a “standard” breakdown! No matter whether you have a disability or not, there are some very important things everyone should do to make sure their vehicle stays in proper working order.
The first is to stay on top of routine maintenance such as oil changes and tire rotations. Mark your diary or set a reminder on your computer or phone to help you remember to have these simple things done on a regular schedule. Mechanics will check other things as well, such as your coolant, transmission, and air filters, to help keep your vehicle running smoothly.
You also need to make sure to pay attention to your car’s battery. Pay attention to any warning lights on your dashboard that may pop up in relation to the battery. You can also get in your car and turn the headlights on before you start the engine. If the headlights get brighter when you start the car, then that may mean your battery is running low.
Another crucial thing is to simply pay attention to how your car is working. Don’t ignore strange noises or a feeling that your car simply isn’t working as it should. If it’s not behaving like it normally would, then get it checked out by a mechanic as soon as you can.
A car represents freedom for people with disabilities, but that freedom comes with responsibilities. You must ensure your car is kept in proper working order, and you must have a backup plan if your car breaks down. Pair the proper roadside assistance with a disabled parking permit to make sure all your travels are smooth ones!