9 July 2016, the fateful day that bf’s car broke down in the middle of Lat Phrao Road, a road named as the most congested road in Bangkok. Yeah … not only that we won lottery, we even managed to strike the grand prize!
In hindsight, when the car aircond started acting up (blowing hot air) the weekend before, we should have acted on it. But bf is busy at work, and was not able to take day off.
On that eventful day, the aircond was blowing hot air, and we were stuck on Lat Phrao Road for a long time. Thankfully, bf noticed the temperature gauge rising, so he quickly stop the car by the roadside. Unfortunately, there were no ways that we could have stop the car away from the road. Reminder to self to be more considerate of drivers in such sticky situations.
He quickly switch off the engine for it to cool down. He also open the hood, and let the engine cool off.
The engine was overheating as the radiator fan has broken; the water pump cannot turn on and coolant was not able to circulate throughout the engine.
At that point, bf was already calling Nissan, his automaker , arranging for a tow truck to get his car tow to the nearest Nissan Service Centre.
As our car was stopped by the roadside, we have inevitably blocked one of the lanes, while waiting for rescue. Not long after, a traffic police came along. Overall, it was a pleasant exchange. I have not had any encounters with traffic police in Thailand so far, and that was a memorable first experience. After hearing about our car engine overheating, he suggested that we move the car a bit further down the road …
And the officer led us to the ‘suggested’ place, the Traffic Control & Command Center, probably around 100 meters away, or so. I felt like a VIP, with a traffic police officer leading us .. and I kept on oohing and aahing …
He even helped directing our car up the ramp, a bit right, a bit left … I did NOT expect that! I was so blardy impressed, that I kept on oohing and aahing. Wow, Thai’s traffic police is super onz!
The Traffic Control & Command Center at Lat Phrao Road, is just next to Lumpine Ville (LPN) condo, close to the Chok Chai 4 intersection. This turned into our new waiting point for our tow truck.
The officer did not just left us there. Blessed his kind soul for checking up on us every now and then, until he left for duty. He invited us in to the station, as there is aircond, he said. He even offered us water and coffee.
As it started to drizzle, the officer’s colleague came and invited us to go in for a shelter. Yipee! Get a chance to step in to their office .. not for long though, as the tow truck finally arrived. And we left, forgetting to say good bye and thank you to the kind people here.
After this experience, I will never look at Thai traffic police the same way, again.
All-in-all, we waited slightly more than one hour the tow truck to reach us on this insanely-famous-traffic-jam road. After the incident, I looked up for info on tow truck, for the sake of writing this blog post. A flatbed tow truck is the best-est way to tow a vehicle, as the risk of damaging is very low. Since the towed vehicle is riding on the flatbed, it will eliminate wear and tear issue on the car tires, since the vehicle’s wheels are not turning / left hanging in the air.
During one of the earlier phone conversation exchanges bf had with Nissan, they asked whether there is enough space for the tow truck. After seeing the way the tow truck operator manoeuvre his vehicle, I can understand the importance of it. Note to self to be more considerate when I am not in the receiving end.
He was able to use Lumpini Ville’s condo entrance to do the necessary, reversing in and out as needs to back up to tow our car.
This man, the tow truck operator has been nothing but of great help. His experience shows, from the way he does his works.
After what seems like a jiffy (it took him less than 5 minutes), he has secured the car and ready to go .. but traffic was a biatch, and we had to endure it.
After what seems like forever (it took us 45 minutes), we arrived at Nissan Vibhavadi.
The operator told us that he works with a company, but all (or most) auto brands engage their services. The bill will be charged to customers, via their respective auto maker. Around THB 1,500 for towing fees, it’s rather a reasonable fee. He receives 4-6 jobs in a day .. and sometimes, due to traffic, he has difficulties delivering all jobs in one day. Along the way, he was consistently on his phone with his office, customers … He was as busy as when I was a full-time media professional back in KL!
At Nissan, bf was attended by one of the highly-mentioned staff at Nissan Vibhavadi. As his car 3-year warranty period is almost up, he was advised to get some items checked in the next few months. This time round, he got the radiator fan replaced FOC, since it’s still under warranty period. Phew! Car was collected within 3 days.
Thank you police officers, thank you tow truck operator, thank you Nissan … And I am just glad that bf didn’t have to go through this alone, even though I didn’t contribute much to the whole process. All I did was just getting him drinks to keep him hydrated.