Winter weather has truly been making its mark across the United States. Even states that never get snow are seeing a flurry or two this year. During inclement weather it is never a good idea to drive far distances. Stand still traffic and accidents caused by snow or black ice can easily lead to being abandoned in your car for an extended period of time. We created a 15 item winter car survival kit for you and your passengers to use to survive these scenarios created by poor weather conditions.
Car Maintenance Survival Items
If you are in your car for a long period of time it is crucial that you have the following items just in case your vehicle gets stuck in snow or ice. Your car is also more likely to have engine issues when the temperature is below zero. The items listed below can help your car get up and running again in the bitter cold.
- Ice Scraper/Brush
- Jumper Cables
- Cat Litter/Road Salt/Sand
Having one of the items from the last bullet point may seem a bit bizarre. Yet, all three can help create traction for your tires if they are stuck in snow or ice. If you slide off the road, put either cat litter, road salt, or sand under your spinning tires and there’s a good chance you’ll be back on the road in no time.
- Emergency Flares or Reflectors
- Folding Shovel
Car Maintenance Tip: During the winter months, it’s always a good idea to keep your gas tank at least half full. This way you can rest assured your car doesn’t run out of gas due to unpredicted traffic or accidents. Having your tank half full is also beneficial for avoiding no start conditions caused from frozen fuel lines due to condensation in your fuel tank.
Food & Health Survival Items
It is very important to ensure that you are maintaining your health and your passengers health if your car becomes abandoned because of the winter weather. Keeping things as simple as a first aid kit in your winter car survival kit can become very helpful with injuries that may occur from an accident. When you’re in your car for a long period of time, hunger is inevitable. Having the food items listed below can quickly eliminate hunger until help arrives or you are back on the road. Health and food items are always good to have in your car no matter what season it is. You truly never know when you’re going to need one of them.
- Granola Bars and Energy Bars
- Canned Food
- First Aid Kit
- Bottled Water
Health Tip: Hypothermia is a very serious health hazard that can occur during the winter season. When abandoned in a car with no heat, this is something that can occur very quickly with low temperatures. Check out this guide on how to tell if you or your passengers have hypothermia and how to treat it. Having this winter car survival kit can help prevent hypothermia.
Warmth/Light Survival Items
Keeping warm is an absolute necessity during the winter months. By adding these items to your winter car survival kit, you will be more comfortable staying in your car for an extended period time if needed, especially if your car won’t start do to the weather or maintenance problems. Having a source of light is very important as well. A source of light is incredibly beneficial at night time, and will also aid you in flagging down help when needed.
- Sleeping Bag
- Warm gloves, hats, and socks.
- Flashlight with extra batteries
Warmth Tip: Thick hats and socks are essential for keeping warm in the winter time. Your body lets out the most heat from your head and your feet, so keeping these areas covered with warm clothing is very important.
Once you have all of these supplies, you will be ready for any bad weather the winter brings while on the road. It’s always better to be safe rather than sorry. Preparing a winter car survival kit is an easy way to stay safe this season. Even though some of these supplies are geared towards winter-specific weather, many of these supplies should be kept in your car all year. Inclement weather and natural disasters can occur year round while you’re on the road. These items are essential for keeping you and your passengers comfortable and safe.
For more tips and pointers on winter emergency kits check out this link here.
Don’t forget to make an at home emergency kit too! The items in this kit are necessary for surviving any natural disaster. Check out our blog post here to learn how to make your own.
(Photo Courtesy of: Michael Goodin)