Monday 10 February 2020: A 30 per cent increase in calls for roadside assistance coupled with difficulties for NRMA patrol crews to reach stranded drivers due to poor driving conditions has resulted in delays of up to three hours across NSW and the ACT.
Since last Friday the NRMA has received over 7,000 requests for emergency roadside assistance across Sydney, Newcastle, Canberra, Wollongong and the Central Coast – a 30 per cent increase on a typical workload over the same period.
There are also wait times on the NRMA call Centre of up to 35 minutes so the NRMA is encouraging people to request assistance for roadside assistance through the NRMA App.
The overwhelming majority of calls have been for flat batteries, flooded engines and flat tyres.
The NRMA is urging drivers to stay at home and avoid any non-essential travel with driving conditions across the state both difficult and dangerous due to flooding, blackouts, fallen trees and debris and fallen electricity lines.
The NRMA has cancelled leave and training, non-essential work activities and called in all available patrols and call centre to help reduce the wait times for roadside assistance.
NRMA spokesperson Peter Khoury said road closures and flooding had made it even harder for NRMA patrols to reach stranded drivers.
“The NRMA wants to reassure our Members and the community that we are taking every possible measure to get to stranded drivers as quickly as possible – however our task has been made harder due to the difficult conditions on our roads,” Mr Khoury said.
“With more rain expected throughout the week the NRMA is encouraging the public to keep the car at home if possible as conditions on the roads are terrible for driving.
“We also want to urge drivers to avoid driving through puddles or over potholes – this is causing a significant increase in calls for flat tyres and flooded engines.
“We apologise for the delays and urge people to be patient and stay safe.”