INDIANAPOLIS — It's not uncommon to see someone with a broken-down car or flat tire on the side of the highway as traffic zooms past.
And just before 5 a.m. Wednesday, it turned tragic after a man was struck and killed while he checked on a flat tire on I-465. Police call the crash a tragic reminder of just how dangerous those situations can be.
"Any time you find yourself stranded in the car, safety should be your No. 1 priority," Indiana State Police Sgt. John Perrine said.
Police and other experts shared tips on how to stay safe. First, try to get off the highway if you can.
"Especially in an urban area where there are plenty of exits, drive to the next exit and get somewhere safe," Perrine said. "Even if you ruin the rim on your car, it is the safer thing to do."
Perrine said drivers should stay on the shoulder and call police if that is not possible.
"It is OK to call police to have us sit behind you with the lights to assist with the tire change to make it a lot faster and expedite that process and get you out of there safety," Perrine said.
Experts with AAA also recommend keeping an emergency kit in your car that has lights, flares and reflective vests.
"That little bit extra can keep someone aware of where you're at, move them over so you have plenty of room. It could be the difference," AAA's vice president of auto motor services Andy Hughes said.
Hughes said other drivers need to do their part as well and stay alert.
"All of us play a role in being vigilant to provide as much safety for the folks on the roadside," Hughes said.