What do you need in an emergency kit for your vehicle? It could be as simple as a mobile phone to call for help or as complicated as a survival kit with canned water, blankets and dehydrated food.
You can buy an emergency kit, or you can take a sturdy box or case and assemble your own. Your needs will change depending on the kind of driving you do. An emergency kit for your daily commutes to work and the kids’ soccer field will be different from what you’ll want for a family vacation crossing long stretches of remote landscape.
To help you get started, we gathered the best recommendations from Consumer Reports, Edmunds.com and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for what the typical vehicle emergency kit should include:
The 11 Basics
Beyond the Basics
If you’ve got the room and the desire, expand your car emergency kit with all or a few of these items:
If you do suffer car trouble, get off the road and away from traffic. Turn on your emergency flashers and call for help, if help is available. And, remember, your emergency supplies won’t do you any good if you take them out of your vehicle. They may take up a little – or even a lot – of space, but, when you need them, you’ll be glad they’re there. They could even help save your life.
The first step in preparing for an emergency on the road is regular car maintenance, especially if you’re planning a long trip. The second step is adequate insurance. When you need a helping hand on the road, it can be a relief to remember that you signed up for Roadside Assistance coverage. Talk to your independent agent to review your auto insurance coverage and, if needed, add Roadside Assistance to your car policy.
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