Be Prepared for a Car Emergency
Published on April 5, 2016
Getting stuck on the side of the road because of a car issue or malfunction is all too common, and will likely happen at the most inconvenient times (ever heard of Murphy’s Law?). Well, being prepared for this type of an event can make your life a little easier while waiting for help – but it can also keep you safe in a dangerous situation.
Even if you belong to a roadside assistance club, there will be situations where you might not be able to reach them (like if you breakdown in a location with no cellular service). Or it might be an extremely long wait before they can come to you depending on your location.
Here are some tips and resources to help you prepare for the next time you get stranded – or at least give you peace of mind that you are ready if a car emergency should occur.
Parents – please also keep this in mind for the new driver’s in your family to help keep them safe on the road!
1. Learn (or teach to the rest of your family) basic car fixes, like how to change a tire and how to jump start your car. In certain situations it may be necessary to do this yourself. Sure, it’s intimidating if you don’t know how, but you can learn and you will be better off for it! Also, as silly as it seems, make sure you know where your spare tire, jack and lug wrench are located in your vehicle as well jumper cables (typically, vehicles come with these items, but it is always good to check and familiarize yourself with them before you get into a difficult situation).
2. Make sure your cell phone is charged before you go on trips and keep a car phone charger in your car. Another idea is to keep a charged wireless phone charger in your car for situations where your vehicle is broken down and you can’t get power from your car/charger. Check out these wireless charger options. Keeping your phone handy on trips can also help after accidents for insurance purposes to snap pictures of the damage(s). If your phone doesn’t have a camera, consider keeping a disposable camera in yourcar.
3. Keep a set of roadside emergency lights with extra batteries in your car (make sure to use lithium batteries to help them last longer as the shelf life of cheap batteries will decrease when exposed to cold temperatures). Being stuck on the side of the road can be dangerous especially when it’s dark. SmartFlare LED Combo Lights and SwivelProLED have super bright LEDs for maximum visibility, giving other vehicles ample warning of your location. They also double as a LED flashlight or work light, with a magnetic base that you can attach anywhere metal on your vehicle so your hands are free to tend to your car. SmartFlare products are great car safety and automotive tools to have on hand, but also extremely versatile with many other uses.
4. Put together an emergency car kit with additional useful items in the event you are stuck for a long period of time. Some basic items to include are water bottles, nonperishable food/snacks, first aid kit, fire extinguisher, tire gauge, blanket and cold weather clothing items like gloves, etc. You can find more emergency car kit tips here.