Winter doesn’t officially start until Dec. 21, but for many of us, the season is already here. Driving in blizzard-like, icy conditions can be dangerous. If you were to become stranded in your car, do you have the necessary tools to get by until help arrives? Here are a few winter car survival tips, some courtesy of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration:
- Have your car inspected and winterized (check battery, tires, fluid levels)
- Stock your vehicle with essentials including a shovel, broom, ice scraper, jumper cables, flashlight, warning devices and blankets for protection from the cold
- Make sure your cell phone is fully charged, and always keep a car charger in your glove box
- Keep extra food (granola bars, other portable snacks) and water on hand, as well as any medications you may need while you’re waiting for assistance
- If you’re driving and experience a snowy “white-out,” it’s a good idea to pull over until it subsides
- Depending on your state, the Department of Transportation probably provides free road assistance, such as tire changes, tows, etc.; keep their number handy at all times in case of an emergency
The most important takeaway from all of this is to be prepared. Try not to panic, and if the weatherman is predicting heavy snowfall and adverse traffic conditions, it’s probably best to postpone your trip until the roads improve.
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