Find Out Tips for Setting Up a Car Preparedness Kit
Emergencies often happen unexpectedly when commuting due to inclement weather, an accident, a vehicle breakdown, or other scenarios where having a preparedness or emergency kit can mean all the difference.
There are a lot of pre-made preparedness kits on the market for vehicles. However, these kits often lack specific items that may be best for families with small children, pets, or other important considerations. By creating your own kit, you can make sure that your family’s needs are met in the event of an emergency.
Here are some tips to follow when setting up a preparedness kit.
About Basic Emergency Kits
Basic emergency kits are crucial in the event of an emergency. These preparedness kits include absolute necessities but may lack additional tools or essential supplies for your specific family’s needs.
When setting up a basic preparedness kit for your car, be sure to include the following items:
- A usable spare tire, a jack, and a wheel wrench
- Jumper cables
- A multipurpose tool or a basic tool kit
- Local road maps if you will be traveling in areas that you are unfamiliar with
- Flashlight and batteries
- Reflective triangles, flares, or another object that is designed to alert passersby
- Car cellphone charger
- Enough blankets for you and your family
- A well-equipped first aid kit
About Inclement Weather Kits for Winter Drivers
If you are like many drivers who live in areas that routinely get snow, blizzards, or other inclement winter weather, be sure to include the following items with your preparedness kit:
- Salt, sand, or non-clumping cat litter
- Snowbrush and scraper combo or a small shovel
- Tire chains
- Tow rope
- Thermal blankets instead of regular blankets
Many of these items can help keep you warm if you’re exposed to the elements or help get your car out of snow or slush if your vehicle gets stuck.
Provisions to Consider for Your Emergency Preparedness Kit
If you’re stranded or stuck in an emergency situation for a lengthy period, you must have provisions for yourself and your family. Food that you include as part of your preparedness kit should be non-perishable and easily accessible. Some recommendations for provisions include:
- A case of bottled water
- Canned nuts
- Trail mix
- High-energy protein bars
- Dehydrated fruits
- Canned food that has an easily opened, popup lid; or canned food and a can opener
Regarding Pet Supplies
Pet owners should take extra precautions and keep their furry friends in mind when creating a preparedness kit for the car. If you travel with your pets, you must have the supplies necessary to care for them for an extended period. These should include:
- Extra water
- Food for your pet
- A leash
- A chew toy or other favored comfort item
- Food and water dishes
Regarding Baby Essentials for Parents
If your family has young children or babies, you will need to take additional steps when preparing an emergency kit for your car. These essentials can be literal lifesavers. Consider making the following items a part of your preparedness kit:
- Baby formula or food (check expiration dates)
- Diaper cream
- Personal items, such as toys, blankets, or pacifiers
About Sanitation Items
Sanitary items are not usually the first thing people think of when preparing emergency kits for their vehicles. However, these items can be beneficial if you are stranded in a car. Consider adding the following items to your kit:
- Hand sanitizer
- Feminine products
- Disinfecting wipes
- Toilet paper
- A change of clothes for each household member.
Ways to Alleviate Anxiety While You Wait
If you are stranded due to an emergency, a vehicle breaks down, or another disaster – you may be stuck there for a little while, especially if you have to wait for a professional to repair your vehicle or for a tow. Having easily accessible distractions can help alleviate boredom and anxiety while helping you pass the time. Consider keeping items like these in your car:
- Board games
- Notepad and pens
- A deck of cards
- Small, battery-powered electronic devices and extra batteries
Checking & Refreshing Your Vehicle’s Preparedness Kit
It’s recommended that you periodically refresh the supplies that you keep in your vehicle. Items and provisions do expire, and you’ll want to make sure that the supplies you keep in the event of an emergency stay fresh.
You should store smaller, loose items in a vacuum-sealed bag, storage bin, or other containers. This will help keep these items fresh and contained in one area of your vehicle or trunk. Experts recommend that you check on your supplies and refresh supplies as needed.
If you are ever in an emergency situation where you must use some of the supplies from your preparedness kit, it’s essential to always replenish those supplies as soon as possible.