Keeping an emergency kit for your vehicle is a good idea for multiple scenarios. If you find yourself in an area where you are unable to call for help, having an emergency kit may keep you from getting stranded and hoping a passerby will be able to offer help. An emergency kit could also include items that could help you in circumstances that may not necessarily be an emergency such as getting caught in the rain or forgetting your wallet at home.
There are several things you should include in your emergency kit for vehicular issues that you might encounter.
- Jumper cables. If there is someone there to help, this will prevent you from needing to call for an emergency jump start.
- Small gas container. If you run out of fuel and have to walk to a gas station, you will need to have something to put the gas in and not all gas stations sell portable fuel containers.
- Waterproof flashlight. This will help if you are having vehicle problems in the dark. Try to get one that is self powered or keep extra batteries in your kit.
- Emergency flares. These are good to have in case your emergency lights don’t work and you are in an area that has low visibility.
- Tire wedges. hese are good to have in case your car stops working on a steep hill.
- Spare tire kit. If you have room in your vehicle, keeping a spare tire and the tools you need to remove and replace the tire is a good idea.
- Tire Inflator and/or fix a flat. If you are unable to keep a spare tire, having an inflation device or fix a flat might be able to repair a flat tire long enough for you to get to a shop to get it replaced.
- Tire pressure gauge. This will help you keep your tires at the optimal pressure to prevent flats.
- Duct tape. If you are in a fender bender and your bumper starts to fall off, this will hold it together until you are able to get to a body shop.
- Fire extinguisher. You could keep a small fire extinguisher in your vehicle for rare cases. If there is ever a fire, you want to get it put out as soon as possible.
- Seat belt cutter and window breaker. This tool is inexpensive and could save your life. Be sure to keep it within arms reach so it is easily accessible in an emergency.
There are also several things you could keep in your kit that aren’t for your vehicle, but are good to have on hand in emergency situations.
- First aid kit. Have this stocked with basic first aid supplies and any medications you or your family members might need on a regular basis.
- Water bottles and snacks. Keep food that won’t spoil such as beef jerky or MREs (Meals Ready to Eat). If you have babies that are formula fed, keep a spare container of ready-to-use formula and a bottle.
- A blanket or a jacket. You never know when a cold front is going to hit.
- Umbrella or poncho. Keep these in your vehicle for rainy weather.
- A paper map. These don’t lose GPS signals.
- Emergency cash. Keep a little cash and/or a prepaid credit card in your vehicle in case you forget your wallet.
- Chargers. Keep an extra charger for whatever device you use as a backup.
- Pencil and paper. You might need to write a quick note.
Keeping these things in your vehicle could prevent you from needing to call for emergency services and help you in unplanned situations. If you are unable to resolve your vehicle issues with what you have available in your vehicle, calling a professional tow truck driver to get you to a repair shop is the next best option.