Car Accidents. They are one of those subjects that no one wants to talk about until they happen. However, if you want to keep you and your family safe, it is imperative for you to be prepared ahead of time. Think about it: Does your vehicles contain the necessary roadside emergency equipment to keep your loved ones safe?
According to DMV.org, even in automobiles with limited space, you should have at least the following items stored in them in case of emergencies:
- First-Aid kit
- Multipurpose tool
- Jumper cables
- Road flares
- Bottled water
Do you have these items in the trunk of your car and are you prepared to use them? If not, the time is now to grab them, to learn how to use them, and to stow them away. Let’s quickly review your options for each item on the list.
First, a quality first-aid kit can be purchased close to home and online. Pharmacies, groceries stores, and, of course, Walmart, carry several varieties of these. If you’d like to go the easy route and order online, this AAA 121-Piece Road Trip First Aid Kit, has supplies for small and large incidents. With over 350 reviews and a 4.5 star rating, AAA states of this product, “Whether for bumps or scrapes that occur in the car, or for dealing with injuries at sporting events, outdoor activities, etc. having the Road Trip First Aid Kit in your car will keep you prepared to address wide range of minor injuries.”
Second after obtaining a first-aid kit, you will want to invest in a flashlight (or too). You can pick up a flashlight online, in a hardware store, or in Walmart. The trick here is to store your flashlight and batteries in separate plastic bags. This will help to protect them, so they are ready to use when you need them. (Depending on the climate where you live, you may need to alter your battery storage. Batteries don’t last well in extreme hot and cold climates. Please contact your local fire department for the proper way to store these, if you have any concerns.)
Third, after making sure you can see in an emergency, you’ll want to make sure you can pry things open or fix small mechanical issues. While it’s impossible to put your whole garage in the trunk of your car (we know, we’d like to do it too!), you can easily carry a universal tool. These lightweight and compact tools will let you handle many situations you could encounter on the road. Again, these are available online and at hardware stores. This one, the Jeep Cretaceous Multi Tool Set Adjustable Screwdriver Wrench Jaw Pliers, can be found on Amazon.com.
Fourth, once you have a universal tool on hand, make sure to pack away a pair of jumper cables. These are a wonderful item to have on hand. You might even be able to help a neighbor out of a pinch with these around. You can purchase jumper cables at any auto supply store. If you have a driver in your car who is unsure about how to use them, advise them to watch a YouTube video like this one for instructions.
Fifth, after the jumper cables are safely packed away, you will want to make sure to have road flares in the trunk too. Again, these can be purchased in any auto supply store. If you have young drivers, or just like convenience, you will want to consider grabbing a couple LED Flashing Lights, for part of your emergency kit.
These lights have countless benefits, like being made of Durable Shock-Resistant Plastic, flashing for 150-200 hours continuous duty in flash mode, being environmentally safe and water resistant. Each unit comes with a 1-Year product warranty, and, perhaps the best of all, they are Made in the USA. These lights make the perfect substitute for flares; there are no flames or toxic smoke when you use them. Rest assured that these are safe for use around children and pets. You can purchase these light here.
Sixth, after you know that emergency personnel can spot you on the road, you may find yourself (and your passengers) waiting around for a while. For longer waits (or even in the pinch of an overheating car), you will want some bottled water on hand. Like batteries, water bottles don’t hold up great to extreme temperatures, so pack these up with the expectation that the bottle may crack over time.
That’s it. Once you have these items stowed away safely in your automobile, you’re ready to go. Put a reminder in your car to check that your kit is intact every 6 months. Hopefully, you will never need to use them, but if you do, you can find comfort in the fact that you (and your family members) are not helpless.