AAA to Aid More Than 6,000 Arizonans this Fourth of July
Auto club reveals top calls for roadside assistance over the holiday
Phoenix, Ariz., June 27, 2012. While most Arizonans are getting ready for barbeques, pool parties and fireworks, AAA is gearing up for one of its busiest weekends of the year. The club anticipates that it will come to the rescue of more than 6,000 motorists across the state next week, an increase of two percent over last year.
“While more than 650,000 Arizonans are expected to be on the road next week, our drivers will be alongside it, rescuing those who have the misfortune of experiencing a vehicle mishap,” said Don Nunnari, vice president of automotive services for AAA Arizona. “The key to avoiding this scenario is to inspect your vehicle before leaving home. Of course, it’s equally important to have a breakdown plan to follow in the event of a vehicle failure.”
To help motorists prevent a road trip slipup this holiday, AAA is revealing the top three calls received over the Independence Day holiday period last year and letting drivers know how to avoid these issues this year:
1.Batteries. Arizona’s sweltering summer temperatures reduce the lifespan of an auto battery to about 24 to 30 months. Last Fourth of July, AAA responded to 1,600 battery-related calls statewide. To avoid a battery failure and extend lifespan, AAA battery experts encourage motorists to:
- Check routinely. When taking your vehicle in for routine service, ask your technician to clean corrosion from the battery terminals, case, brackets and tray.
- Adhere to maintenance. Replace loose cables and brackets, as well as a worn or damaged alternator drive, which can diminish the vehicle’s ability to recharge the battery.
- Buy smart. Batteries are best installed within the first six months of their manufacture. Before buying, look for the battery’s “birthday” code stamped into the top or side of its case.
AAA offers members mobile battery testing and replacement. In addition, AAA batteries come with a six year warranty with three years free replacement.
2.Tires. Most tires fail as a result of under inflation, causing the tire to wear faster. This, paired with pavement that easily exceeds 200 degrees, is a recipe for disaster. Last year during the Fourth of July holiday, AAA responded to more than 900 tire-related calls across the state. To avoid a tire faux pas this Fourth, AAA recommends that motorists:
- Check pressure for all four tires, as well as your spare, monthly when tires are cool. Tires should be inflated to manufacturer’s recommendation, which can be found in the owner’s manual or inside the driver side door jamb.
- Check tread. Worn tires are more likely to suffer punctures and other issues. Further, a tire’s tread is imperative to the tire providing the vehicle with adequate traction.
Don’t rely on monitoring systems. These systems are typically designed to warn motorists once tires are 25 percent underinflated, which is often too late to prevent damage.
3.Lockouts. The hectic nature of a holiday seems to increase the number of opportunities to forget car keys inside a vehicle, or in trunks where luggage is stored. When a child or pet is locked inside a vehicle, these incidents can turn deadly. Last Fourth of July, AAA Arizona’s Roadside Assistance team answered 720 calls for help from members locked out of their cars. To avoid being locked out of their vehicle this summer, AAA advises motorists to:
- Stay focused. Don’t become distracted when getting into or out of your vehicle.
- Create the habit of putting keys in your pocket or purse when loading or unloading your trunk. Carry an extra key in your wallet or purse, but never leave a spare key hidden in or attached to the vehicle.
- Never leave children or pets behind. When unloading your vehicle, always get your children and pets out of the car first and then luggage. If your child or pet is locked inside a vehicle, or if you see a child or pet locked in a vehicle – do not call AAA – call 911.
AAA advises having your vehicle inspected by a trusted technician. That’s why the auto club offers free pre-trip checks and free battery testing to members at any of its four Club Owned Auto Repair facilities. In addition, members with smart phones can summon help via AAA mobile.
“Our scorching summer temperatures can quickly turn an inconvenient breakdown into a dangerous situation,” added Nunnari. “Therefore, it’s crucial to carry water in your car at all times, and, let the AAA dispatcher know if you find yourself in a precarious situation on the roadside without it.”
Motorists are urged to carry an emergency car care kit at all with them in their vehicles. Kits can be purchased at a AAA office or compiled at home and should include: a flashlight, flares, jumper cables, a basic repair kit, cell phone and charger, water and non-perishable snacks.
AAA Arizona, the Arizona affiliate of AAA, provides automotive, insurance and auto travel services to more than 825,000 Arizona members. Annually, AAA’s Roadside Assistance responds to more than 450,000 calls for help on Arizona roadways. The auto club also provides insurance, travel, auto repair, discounts and financial services to AAA members. Since its founding in 1927, AAA Arizona has been a leading advocate for the safety and security of all travelers.