AAA: Ready for Roadside Rescues this Thanksgiving

Auto club highlights top calls, offers prevention tips

Phoenix, Nov. 25, 2013. As more than 865,000 Arizonans get ready to head out of town this week, the leader in roadside assistance, AAA, is gearing up for an increase in calls.

Last year over the Thanksgiving holiday, the club responded to nearly than 6,000 emergency roadside assistance calls statewide. The club is anticipating a high call volume next week as the holiday travel blitz begins.

“Think of a road trip like cooking Thanksgiving dinner. You wouldn’t start to cook a turkey without preheating the oven, and you shouldn’t set out for a road trip without prepping your vehicle,” said John Walter, director of Auto Repair for AAA Arizona. “As an automotive resource, this advice is especially important as the majority of Arizonans plan to drive to their destinations.”

To help keep drivers safe and on time for dinner, AAA is highlighting its top four roadside assistance calls in Arizona from last Thanksgiving and how to prevent similar breakdown:

Battery. AAA responded to more than 1,700 calls for battery failure over the Thanksgiving travel period last year. Prevent this by ensuring battery cable connections are tight and the terminals are free from corrosion. If a battery is more than two years old, have it tested. AAA members can request AAA’s Mobile Battery Service test and replace the battery on-site if needed.
 

Lockouts. The club responded to more than 900 calls from people locked out of their cars over Thanksgiving last year. It’s easy to become preoccupied this time of year. Avert a lockout by keeping a spare key with you or with someone else. Also, never leave your car running – even just for a minute. Also, if child or pet is inside a locked vehicle, call 911 immediately and follow the dispatcher’s instructions.

Tires. AAA responded to more than 800 calls for tire help over Thanksgiving last year. Avoid this by inspecting all tires – including the spare – when they are cold. Make sure pressure levels match those found in either the owner’s manual or on the driver’s door jamb, and note that pressure levels may be different for front and rear tires. Visually inspect tires for cracks or bulges, and ensure tread depth is adequate. 

 

Tows. The club responded to more than 2,100 calls for Arizona drivers needing a tow for various reasons. While the club is able to get drivers back on the go in many cases, a car may need to be towed to a shop for repair for a more serious problem. Thwart vehicle failure by inspecting your car or having it checked by a professional, such as AAA Owned or Approved Auto Repair.

AAA urges drivers to be prepared for a breakdown with an emergency car care kit. Kits should be updated to include cold weather essentials such as blankets, hand warmers, non-perishable food and water. If heading to snow or ice, include an ice scraper for the windshield, snow chains and kitty litter to help with traction.

AAA also encourages travelers to become familiar with AAA’s mobile solutions before taking to the roads over the holiday weekend. The free AAA Mobile app, for example, enables members to find AAA discounts, summon roadside assistance, find fuel price information, directions and more near user locations.

AAA is the leader in roadside assistance. Visit AAA.com/auto for more information.

AAA Arizona, the Arizona affiliate of AAA, provides automotive, insurance and 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 discounts and financial services to AAA membersSince its founding in 1927, AAA Arizona has been a leading advocate for the safety and security of all travelers.