Nobody wants to be stranded on the side of the road, but a minor delay can turn into a major problem if you are unprepared for an emergency. These days, nearly everyone has a cell phone, so trouble usually isn’t more than a call away, but you should still prepare an emergency roadside kit in case you get stranded far from home or in an area with no cell reception. Below, we discuss some thing you should store in your trunk so you’ll be prepared in the event of a roadside emergency.
Flashlight – A flashlight is an essential part of a roadside kit if you’re planning on traveling during the wee hours of the night. A flashlight or lantern can help you look under the hood for any problems, or it can simplify the process of changing a flat tire. Don’t forget to pack appropriate batteries as well.
Jumper Cables – Although you’ll need the assistance of another car, jumper cables are a great tool to store in your car’s trunk. Jumper cables can get your car working if you accidentally leave the headlights or dome light on overnight. If instructions aren’t included in the cable packaging, make sure you write down the instructions for properly hooking up the cables.
Roadside Flashers – You’ll want to pack a device that alerts other motorists of your presence so they give you enough room on the side of the highway. This can be achieved with reflecting caution cones, a roadside triangle, or flares. If you are going to pack road flares, make sure they are off to the side of the road so they aren’t a danger to the other drivers, and never use a flare as a light source for checking anything on your vehicle.
Miscellaneous Tools – If you’re handy enough to fix a flat on your own, you’ll want to pack the right tools to get the job done. Keep items like a car jack, a jack handle or crank, and a lug wrench in your trunk to assist you in the process. Also, our auto mechanics recommend storing a bungee cable in your car in the event that your hood or trunk latches break.
Age-Appropriate Materials – If you routinely travel with children or elderly individuals, it’s safe to assume they might be with you during the emergency. Pack essential age-appropriate materials, like:
First Aid Kit – Sometimes a passenger may suffer an injury that requires medical attention. Always keep a first aid kit in your car in case of a medical emergency. Some items to include in the first aid kit are bandages, Band-Aids, gauze, sterilization wipes, over-the-counter pain medication, eye-wash, and a CPR mask.
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