Before you head out on the icy roads, do you make sure that your car is ready for the challenge? Most owners get a tune-up, make sure the oil is changed and ensure that their tires are properly inflated. What many owners neglect to do is to make sure that they have an emergency kit in their trunk. Before the harsh weather hits, here are five things that every winter weather emergency kit should contain:
1.Food and Water
You never know how long you’ll be stranded should you go off the side of the road and become stranded, especially in rural areas. Make sure that your kit includes at least three bottles of water for every person that regularly rides in your car and a few boxes of energy bars, granola bars or other easy-to-open, high-protein food items. Having these things will ensure that you don’t get dehydrated or go hungry if you aren’t rescue immediately.
You’ll need to get out of your car from time to time to keep the snow cleared. You don’t want to have to sit in your wet clothes for hours. Make sure that you pack at least one extra change of clothing in your emergency kit for the driver of the vehicle. Include a top, pants, socks and even an extra pair of underwear. You may also want to add another pair of shoes to your kit in case your boots get wet.
You should always have a blanket or two in the trunk of your car, especially when winter rolls around. You may want to consider purchasing specially made blankets from your local sporting goods store. These blankets are silver on one side, thin and easily folded. They’ll help you retain body heat when the temperatures drop. Sleeping bags are another good option and take up only a small amount of space in your vehicle.
4.Flares and Markers
Make sure that you have a set of flares and other emergency markers in your kit. Flares will alert oncoming traffic to your status and caution them to slow down as they approach. Flares can also make it easier for rescuers to spot you from a distance should the snowfall turn heavy. Make sure that in the event you need to use your flares, you set them up at least 50 feet away from your vehicle to give other cars a change to stop before they are right on top of you.
Stick a small camping shovel in your kit or put an empty tin can in your trunk. You’ll need to use these items to keep the snow cleared from around your vehicle. Without at least a small shovel, you may have to use your hands to dig through the snow. Using your hands in the snow for an extended period can lead to frost bite which, in turn, can lead to very serious medical conditions.
Every car should be equipped with a winter weather emergency kit before the snow starts to fly. If you stock your kit with at least the five items above, you’ll be ready for any emergency that the icy roads can throw at you.