Winter Car Kit

Since I am embarking on my first Michigan winter I wanted to make sure that should I ever be stranded in my car that I could survive a night alone in it.  Since just buying an all-in-one kit is not my style, I decided that I would put together a kit from scratch. I had some notion of what should be in it too, but figured that I would rely on the wisdom of others and searched around a bit. I was disappointed with what I found and so I thought that I would contribute my own thoughts on the subject.

All that said, please note that this kit is intended for short trips, and that most of the things listed should probably be in your car regardless of whether it is winter or not.

Here’s the list:

  • Blanket or two
  • Small tarp (having something waterproof is useful)
  • Large garbage sacks (for waste disposal  and water-proofing things)
  • Waterproof matches
  • Candle (you can use this to melt snow in your can, use it for light, and to keep warm with to some extent)
  • Flashlight (w/extra batteries)
  • Gloves
  • Hat
  • Socks
  • Window scraper
  • First aid kit
  • Jumper cables
  • 20 feet of nylon rope (for towing or other miscellaneous uses)
  • Bright cloth (for signaling)
  • Whistle (for signaling)
  • Small shovel
  • Food (granola bars, nuts, candy of various sorts)
  • Roll of paper towels
  • Bath Towel
  • Two coffee cans (one for waste, one for melting snow)
  • Two rolls of toilet paper
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Water
  • Kitty litter (to help with traction)
  • Tool kit  (hammer/hatchet, pliers, screw drivers at a minimum)
  • Deck of playing cards
  • Something to read

My guess is that this could be put together using quality items for less than $100 with the jumper cables, fire extinguisher, and tools consuming the lion’s share of the budget.

Finally here are some additional resources that have similar lists and general winter safety tips:

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  1. Week in review « Craig W. Wright

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