We recently spent some time compiling a section of content on the Arrive Alive website with the heading “Changing a tyre next to the side of the road”. One of the aspects briefly referred to is the importance of not changing the tyres with adults inside the vehicle. This however also begs the question of what to do when you have children inside the vehicle. We found some helpful tips on another blog post titled “What to Do if You Get a Flat Tyre with the Kids in the Car”
Some of these suggestions include:
Help the Kids Stay Calm
Some flat tyres are more dramatic than others. If you have a slow leak that eventually becomes a flat tyre, it’s a relatively minor inconvenience that may make the kids uncomfortable, but is not likely to trigger any meltdowns. If your tyre blows dramatically, however, you’re going to have not only a flat tyre to deal with, but also a car full of frightened, crying children. Make sure that you’re not behaving in a way that will increase the kids’ stress levels, and take the time to reassure them that everything will be okay. Kids don’t necessarily know what to expect from a new situation, but they will react with terror when they see the adult who’s in charge starting to lose composure. Stay calm, and try to help kids do the same.
Move to a Safe Place
Cars flying down the highway are inherently dangerous, so it’s important to move to a safe place as soon as possible. Changing a flat tyre on the shoulder of the highway is scary enough, but kids can easily become absolutely terrified if they see cars whipping past you, close enough to vibrate the car they’re sitting in. Move away from traffic if you can, and look for a safe place to pull over before dealing with the issue at hand.
Get Membership in a Roadside Assistance Program
Just like it’s better to have tools that you never need than to find yourself lacking them when the need presents itself, it’s better to have an ongoing relationship with a roadside assistance program that you rarely use than to find yourself with no help in the event of an emergency. With roadside assistance in place, all you have to do is call for help and then settle in and keep the kids occupied while you wait for them to arrive on the scene.
Turn the Experience into a Learning Opportunity
While you certainly don’t want to drag little ones out to the side of a busy highway, older kids will need to have a practical knowledge of how to change a tyre before they start driving cars of their own. If the flat tyre is one you can change in a parking lot or at home and you have the necessary tools to change a tyre and know what you’re doing, turn a bad situation into a learning opportunity by getting older kids involved in the process.
How you react to a flat tyre when you have kids in tow will be largely dependent on the ages of the kids in question, the severity of the situation and any danger that may be present. Use your own best judgement when determining your course of action, and be sure that you keep any safety concerns in mind as your primary priority.
Always consider the safety of yourself and that of other road users. You do not wish to have children running around the vehicle causing a danger to themselves and other traffic!
For the procedure to effectively and safely change a tyre also view: