Parking brake cables, sometimes referred to as emergency brake cables, connect the parking brake lever or handle to the parking brake mechanism, commonly located on the rear wheels of the vehicle.
On vehicles with rear drum brakes, the brake cable usually activates the brake shoes mechanically. On vehicles with rear disc brakes, the cable either engages the brake calipers, or parking brake shoes which are located in a small drum housed within the hub assembly.
Parking brake cables are usually located underneath the vehicle, where over time they may rust and break due to water damage or an impact. If a cable is broken, the parking brake mechanism will be unable to engage, leaving the vehicle in danger of rolling away while parked. For this reason it is important to replace a broken parking brake cable right away.