Not Too Early To Make A Car Emergency Kit For Winter
Ok, so it's not quite winter yet, but snow is coming and it's getting cold. Sooner or later we will get the big one. Maybe it's time to start preparing. These are items you might not think to put in your car but can save you or your family's life.
According to readywisconsin.com here are a few things to have:
- a shovel
- windshield scraper and small broom
- flashlight with extra batteries
- battery powered radio
- snack food including energy bars
- raisins and mini candy bars
- matches and small candles
- extra hats, socks and mittens
- First aid kit with pocket knife
- Necessary medications
- blankets or sleeping bag
- tow chain or rope
- road salt, sand, or cat litter for traction
- booster cables
- emergency flares and reflectors
- fluorescent distress flag and whistle to attract attention
- Cell phone adapter to plug into lighter
Looking through my own car last year, I realized how unprepared I would be if I were to ever have car trouble in the winter. So I went out and purchased some blankets, electric blanket, flashlights, extra batteries, a small shovel, and other things on that list. When talking to people I noticed they were just as unprepared.
Here's some other things that Ready Wisconsin says you should be prepared for if you are in a real big snow storm. (Not too early to think about it!!)
- Prepare your vehicle: Make sure you keep your gas tank at least half full.
- Be easy to find: Tell someone where you are going and the route you will take.
- If stuck: Tie a florescent flag (from your kit) on your antenna or hang it out the window. At night, keep your dome light on. Rescue crews can see a small glow at a distance. To reduce battery drain, use emergency flashers only if you hear approaching vehicles. If you're with someone else, make sure at least one person is awake and keeping watch for help at all times.
- Stay in your vehicle: Walking in a storm can be very dangerous. You might become lost or exhausted. Your vehicle is a good shelter.
- Avoid Overexertion: Shoveling snow or pushing your car takes a lot of effort in storm conditions. Don't risk a heart attack or injury. That work can also make you hot and sweaty. Wet clothing loses insulation value, making you susceptible to hypothermia.
- Fresh Air: It's better to be cold and awake than comfortably warm and sleepy. Snow can plug your vehicle's exhaust system and cause deadly carbon monoxide gas to enter your car. Only run the engine for 10 minutes an hour and make sure the exhaust pipe is free of snow. Keeping a window open a crack while running the engine is also a good idea.
- Don't expect to be comfortable: You want to survive until you're found.