Winter Safety Car Essentials Everyone Should Have

Check out this article for expert tips and survival items everyone should have on hand to be prepared for car emergencies, especially during freezing temps through the winter!

No one wants to think about the possibility of being stranded in the cold with a car emergency; however, it can happen to anyone. It’s smart to be prepared just in case it may happen to you.

Follow these guidelines to stay safe during a potential car emergency this winter:

  1. Research your insurance policies or other programs you may belong to and know what kind of towing/roadside assistance services are available to you.
  2. Create an emergency kit that stays in your car and includes: a windshield scraper, blankets, hats and gloves, a small shovel, jumper cables, a can of fix-a-flat, a spare tire with air in it and the essentials to change a spare tire, a first-aid kit, a multipurpose utility tool, handwarmers, extra non-perishable snacks, water bottles, a flashlight, and possibly a candle and book of matches.
  3. Store extra windshield wiper fluid in your car.
  4. Keep your cellphone fully charged before leaving in your car.
  5. Have a list of important phone numbers written down or memorized in case you have no phone battery power and need to reach someone.
  6. Consider hiding cash somewhere in your vehicle in case of an emergency.

If you get stuck in the snow or your car stops running:

  1. Stay with your car.
  2. Be visible when waiting for assistance. At night, keep a dome light (the interior cabin light with a dome-shaped cover that is attached to your car’s ceiling) on, if possible.
  3. Conserve your fuel by only running your engine and heater long enough to take the chill out of the air.
  4. Keep warm with anything you have available, such as floor mats, newspapers or other clothing items.

“Be Prepared With a Winter Car Emergency Kit,” Consumer Reports, Dec. 14, 2017.