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Emergency Kit for Your Vehicle

We know it is only the end of September, but winter weather likes to sneak up and surprise us in Ohio! That means the time to prepare for that bad winter weather is now, and you know what? You need an emergency kit any time of the year because your car can break down no matter what the weather is. You can get a pre-made kit, but if you buy supplies, you can make multiple kits and have leftovers to replenish as you need. The biggest benefit of creating your own vehicle emergency kit? You'll know exactly what's inside. You bought it and packed it, so you'll know what is and isn't included.

So let's get prepared!

First, get yourself a plastic tote. Preferably one that is smaller, a 5-gallon tote will work well and keep everything from scattering all over in your trunk. If you have a truck and you don't have a truck "tool box" to hold everything, get a heavier duty plastic tote that will keep out the rain, snow, and bugs.

Now, it's time to gather materials to stock. So, let's start with the first aid kit. You should include the following: 
  • Band-Aids
  • Hand sanitizer.
  • Antiseptic.
  • Antibiotic ointment.
  • Bug spray.
  • Aspirin (or similar).
  • Cotton balls.
  • Gauze pads.
  • Tweezers.
  • Bandana.
  • Ace bandage.
Have these in plastic storage bags to keep them dry and keep everything organized.

Next, you should have a fire extinguisher, one that is small and easy to store. Have some road flares (if not already in your tire-changing tools). These will be really handy when you break down at night. It will alert people to your presence and help someone find you who is coming to assist. Having a set of jumper cables is imperative for you or for you to help someone else. Keep a sturdy flashlight and extra batteries, some rags to clean up messes. The always handy duct tape is good to make a quick, temporary fix of something, and having a multipurpose tool will also be helpful.

Now for some weather specific items to include. Have some rain ponchos and a tarp (you can use this to lay on the ground and keep you out of the mud or snow when you are changing a tire). Scent-free baby wipes are handy for cleaning up when you don't have a sink nearby. In the winter, have an ice scraper, cat litter for slick roads, and blankets and/or warm clothing. During the hot months, swap the warm clothes for a small battery-powered fan. Drinking water and non-perishable snacks are something to keep on hand during any season. Have an extra pair of comfortable shoes too in case you aren't wearing one that are great for walking.

Some recommend keeping fluids like oil, antifreeze, and brake fluid in your vehicle as well. If you have an older car, add these to your kit—but if you regularly check your fluids, you shouldn't need these.

When you are looking for totes of all sizes and colors, check out Edge Plastics. This woman-owned, made-in-America company offers private labeling on all products and a unique color palette for customers to choose from. Their products can be found at large retailers throughout the United States and Canada.


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