How to Build a DIY Roadside Emergency Kit

09_20_Perfect Roadside Emergency Kit-01 compliance approved
Keeping a roadside emergency kit in your car is just plain smart — no matter where you’re going. Even if you typically just travel across town for work, you never know when nasty weather or an unforeseen emergency will leave you stranded on the roadway. Put these items together for each car your family owns, and do an inventory every six months.

Emergency Supplies

The first aid kit is the most essential item you can add to your car. It might come in handy for a scraped knee at the park or for a more serious injury. You can buy ready-packed kits or assemble your own based on your family’s needs.

What should you have in a first aid kit for your car? The American Red Cross offers guidelines for assembling your kit. In addition to a first aid kit, make sure you always have water and nonperishable food, in case you get stranded. Think about what your pets need too if they frequently ride with you. Put all first aid supplies in a bag you can easily carry in the event you need to leave your vehicle. Always have a cell phone charger in your car and keep your phone charged.

Vehicle Needs

Your vehicle essentially needs its own first aid kit in case something goes wrong. You can buy a small vehicle toolkit and pack it in a bag, along with jumper cables and other necessities. Before you head out on an adventure, be sure your vehicle is road-trip ready.

Winter Weather Supplies

If you live or travel where blustery weather poses a threat, you’ll want to have extra items in your emergency preparedness kit. Keep extra layers of warm clothing in your car. While commuting or traveling, you may not be dressed for spending time outdoors or without heat for prolonged periods. Warm, waterproof boots are a must. A shovel will come in handy if you get stuck in the snow. You can also carry kitty litter or a bag of sand to use as traction. A small backpacking stove and cooking container will provide you with a method for heating soup or tea for nourishment and warmth, and if you run out of water, you can melt snow. The Weather Channel offers important tips on what to do if you are stranded in your vehicle during winter weather. You can also read our tips for winterizing your car.

Having these items in your vehicle ensures you’re prepared for many emergency situations, but you’ll also want to be sure your auto insurance offers the right amount of protection to keep you safe. Contact your Farm Bureau insurance agent to schedule a SuperCheck® and to learn more about Farm Bureau’s Emergency Roadside Assistance coverage