In some parts of the country, getting stuck in mud is a more likely scenario than getting stuck in snow. Ultimately, it's the same root cause: lack of traction under your tires.
Luckily, similar tips can be used to try to get out of both. And remember in these situations that pushing hard on the gas and spinning your tires will make the situation worse.
- If it's safe, get out of your car to assess the situation. To lighten the load, ask any passengers to get out as well.
- If possible, dig out the mud from in front of and behind your power wheels (front or rear, depending on what kind of drive you have).
- When you dig away the mud, fill the space with twigs, some wood, small rocks, cat litter or even your floor mats (nap side down). You're trying to provide traction for your car's tires.
- Get back in your car. Shift into the lowest gear possible and gently accelerate forward, then in reverse. Avoid spinning your tires; try to gain some traction. If you happen to have passengers or bystanders who can help push, make sure they are pushing on the end of the car away from where you have placed the materials under your tires - the material could get pushed out by the acceleration and become a hazard.
- As you repeat the gentle forward/reverse acceleration, you should build up some momentum and be able to drive forward and out of the mud.
As in all emergency situations involving vehicles, safety is the most important concern. If you are stuck too deeply or it is not safe for you or others to get out of your vehicle to assess the situation, the best course of action is to call for road side assistance.
Any other tips for getting out of a sticky situation? Share them in the comments!
- Rose R.